Coffee Cultures From Around the World: A Look at How Different Countries Enjoy Their Cup
While coffee is a universal language, spoken and understood by all, there’s no single way to enjoy a delicious cup o’ joe. The individual history, culture, and lifestyle that surround the beverage influence the way a country prepares and drinks their coffee.
Coffee doesn’t just offer that quick jolt that you need in the morning. It also lets you catch a glimpse of the rest of the world just by looking at the coffee habits that differ from one country to another. Here are some of the most fascinating ones.
In Ethiopia, more than any place else in the world, coffee is much more than just your daily caffeine fix. It’s deeply ingrained in the country’s culture, so much so, that the phrase “buna dabo naw," which directly translates to “coffee is our bread,” has become more than just a saying--it’s a way of life. Here, the beverage is celebrated in beautiful, elaborate ceremonies held in private homes, and led by the lady of the house. Family members, relatives, neighbors, and friends gather to watch the brewing process, which takes hours, until they are finally served coffee that’s flavored with salt and butter in tiny china cups.
Italy’s coffee culture involves more rules than a game of cricket: Don’t order a capuccino after 11am (Italians only drink coffee with milk in the morning. Never in the afternoon, and especially not after a meal!); Drink your espresso standing up (Unless you want to pay extra for a seat. In Italy, they order and drink their coffee at the bar, getting a table would cost you more); and forget about getting coffee to go, because to-go cups are not a thing. Not that you won’t have time to finish your drink since espresso is served in tiny cups that hold nothing more than three sips.
“Black as hell, strong as death, and sweet as love,” is how the old Turkish proverb describes the country’s brew. However, coffee in Turkey is not as intense as it sounds nor is it as tough as it looks. It’s actually enjoyed more like a dessert, served after dinner with a sweet candy on the side, rather than a strong kick in the morning to get you on your feet and out the door. Don’t be in a hurry to sip, though, because Turkish coffee is served ridiculously hot!
In Ireland, you don’t have to choose between coffee and alcohol. You get to enjoy them both in the same glass. The original Irish coffee recipe is very simple and easy to make: pre-heat glass with hot water, pour the water out and add a teaspoon of brown sugar and “a good measure of Irish whiskey,” stir and pour in hot coffee, and finally, top with lightly whipped cream. It’s usually served in a glass cup (sometimes even wine glasses) instead of your usual opaque mug for added visual appeal.
If you can’t be bothered with all the extra steps, try Bones Coffee Company’s Irish Cream Liqueur Flavor Coffee. We've combined our popular medium-roast blend with a delicious Irish cream flavor to bring you an instant classic!