There are so many countries that love coffee, as it is one of the most popular beverages worldwide. Just as with other drinks such as tea or beer, no two countries have identical approaches to coffee. Countries have their own distinct methods for everything: roasting, brewing, and even the coffee shop culture itself.
Branching out and trying different coffee styles can give your taste buds a whole new experience. Let’s take a look at some creative coffee cultures that you might not be familiar with.
What is Italian Style Coffee?
When considering Italian style coffee, you might initially think of dark espressos and bold cappuccinos.
Italian coffee culture is a distinct practice, marked more by the daily rituals than by the chosen coffee products. To fully practice Italian coffee culture, consider this schedule: cappuccino in the morning, macchiato in the afternoon, and espresso with dinner.
Every coffee culture has a coffee maker that suits its lifestyle, and Italy has two famous pieces of hardware. The lesser-known of the two is a three chambered aluminum coffee maker, designed to deliver bold flavors in any cup of coffee. The well-known and popular choice is the espresso machine. Italian espresso machines are some of the best in the world, known for crafting a robust and creamy texture that is perfect for cappuccinos. Buy quality espresso beans and a revered machine, and embrace the Italian coffee routine!
A popular coffee drink on menus all over the United States is an “Americano,” or “caffeè Americano,” which is Italian for “American coffee.” There’s a popular story that the name originates from World War II: American soldiers who were stationed in Italy supposedly thought that Italian espresso was too strong to drink. They diluted the espresso with hot water to create a beverage with a similar taste to the coffee they drank at home. The name and story have been passed down, and Americanos have evolved into a popular drink sold throughout the United States.
What is United States Style Coffee?
Environmentally-friendly movements are shifting United States coffee culture: practices such as using plastic straws are decreasing, while others such as fair trade beans and clean roasting are increasing. The U.S. is still largely split between more ethical, hipster coffee shops and mainstream chain experiences. Third wave and second wave coffee happily coexist.
In the U.S., speed and style are everything. Brands like Nespresso and Keurig accommodate the need for speed. You can purchase coffee pods and K-cups that make crafting coffee as simple as pushing a button -- no measuring, and no grounds spilled all over the counter. With quality K-cups and coffee pods, you still get a great beverage, but with far less work.
The coffee culture in the United States is also increasingly concerned with the health benefits of the beverage, seeking out lower-calorie treats and healthier, more basic options.
What is Korean Style Coffee?
Korean style coffee has changed throughout the years, mirroring changes in Korean lifestyles. The country varies between an instant-coffee consumption and a brewing powerhouse.
Korean style coffee trends currently revolve around instant coffee obsession. No brewing, no Italian espresso machines, just a cup of hot water and a little packet of mix. This obsession flows out of an earlier coffee trend in Korea: the morning coffee routine. Instant coffee packets in Korea generally don’t produce the rich, bitter black coffee that you might be accustomed to from instant coffee in the United States. Instead, Korean coffee packets are pre-sweetened.
Of course, Korean coffee culture isn’t just instant packets in workplaces. Korea is home to over 350,000 certified baristas, which is more than anywhere else in the world. The coffee is served extremely hot; a current trend started by Gangnam ladies is to order Americanos with a couple of ice cubes.
How to Make Korean Morning Coffee
Korean morning coffee involves ingredients you might associate with a salad: salt, pine nuts, walnuts, sesame oil, and egg yolks. Older Korean coffee shops serve the super-hot morning breakfast and coffee combination. To make it at home, sprinkle an egg yolk with a pinch of salt and a bit of sesame oil before dropping it softly into a cup of instant coffee. Add nuts for additional flavoring.
What is German Style Coffee?
Germany doesn’t grow its own coffee trees, so its coffee culture is dependent on ingredients and traditions from other countries. Additionally, Germans generally appreciate flavors that are a bit more mild, so the coffee you get there won’t be some strong, robust brew like the screaming Italian espressos or the super sweet coffee of South India.
For the United States, chain coffee shops were a turning point that introduced the country to better coffee and, more importantly, a culture that cares about coffee. That same transition is beginning in Germany, with shops popping up everywhere. It seems that German coffee culture will get a chance to slowly develop into a culture similar to that of the United States.
What is Filipino Style Coffee?
Filipino Style Coffee Jelly is a great sweet treat that can be your next summer coffee fix. Filipino Style Coffee Jelly is a coffee jelly made with extra cream and condensed milk. It’s a fan favorite of those who lean toward the sweetener side of the coffee spectrum. If the Italian coffee routine isn’t satisfying your sweet tooth, this will do the trick.
Filipino coffee jelly is generally made by mixing instant coffee with a gelatin base, but you can also brew your own coffee to use in the mix. Summer coffee is generally dominated by iced coffee; a chilled coffee jelly in a milk mixture can give your drink a delicious new flavor. Try mixing the coffee jelly into iced coffee for an even more delightful treat!
What is South Indian Style Coffee?
South Indian filter coffee is generally mixed with chicory for a bitter, robust flavor. Chicory is a coffee alternative that was originally introduced to make coffee at a cheaper and last longer. You can make South Indian coffee a bit less authentically without chicory, but we suggest investing in some chicory grounds to try out the beverage.
South Indian coffee, like Filipino coffee, is typically a very sweet beverage. It is poured into a special filter and then poured quickly back and forth to mix in steamed milk and sugar. The pouring process aerates the coffee and mixes the ingredients to give the final product its light and fluffy texture.
Are you ready for your tastebuds to trek around the globe? Diving into the international styles of coffee can spark some interesting gift ideas for the coffee lover in your life, and can expand your own tastes. Pick one of the ideas here and get started! You may not be able to buy a plane ticket to get to Italy, but you can purchase a fancy espresso machine and great beans. You might not spend a week traveling around Korea, but you can craft their traditional morning coffee! The adventure begins here.