Globetrotting for Java: The 12 Most Delicious Coffee Drinks From Around the World
Globetrotting for Java: The 12 Most Delicious Coffee Drinks From Around the World - The 12 Most Delicious Coffee Drinks From Around the World":
Globetrotting coffee lovers are always on the hunt for new and exciting coffee experiences from around the world. While a simple latte or cappuccino can be delicious, exploring the wide range of coffee drinks across cultures opens up a realm of new flavors. From whiskey-spiked Irish coffee to sweet Spanish café bombons, here are 12 of the most delicious coffee drinks from around the globe.
Café Bombón - This sweet coffee treat originated in Spain in the 1950s. It combines espresso with condensed milk and is served in a tall glass. The contrast of the strong espresso against the sweetness of the condensed milk makes for an indulgent experience.
Irish Coffee - Irish coffee features strongly brewed black coffee mixed with Irish whiskey, sugar, and thick whipped cream. It was invented by Joe Sheridan in Ireland in the 1940s to warm up cold travelers arriving at the airport. The blend of coffee, whiskey, and velvety cream makes for a comforting, energizing drink.
Yuanyang - This popular Hong Kong drink combines three parts coffee with seven parts Hong Kong-style milk tea. The mixture creates a unique flavor and creamy, tan-colored drink. It's especially popular at dai pai dongs (open air food stalls).
Café Touba - This spiced Senegalese coffee features strong Touba coffee beans brewed with cloves and peppercorns. It was created to honor the founder of the Mouride Brotherhood in Senegal and is quite strong and invigorating.
Egg Coffee - Egg yolk is whipped with sugar and condensed milk then combined with Vietnamese dark roast coffee. It creates a drink that is both rich and sweet, with the egg yolk acting as a natural creamer. It was invented in Hanoi when milk was scarce.
Kopi Joss - This unique Indonesian drink involves lighting a bit of coal in hot sand and placing it in the coffee. Drinking the coffee while the coal is still lit gives it a unique, smoky flavor.
Mazagran - Originally created by French soldiers in Algeria in the 1840s, this drink features strong coffee served over ice and diluted with cold water. Versions can also include lemon, rum, or mint.
Kopi Luwak - Kopi luwak is created from coffee beans that have been eaten and passed through the digestive system of the Asian palm civet. The beans are then collected from the civet's droppings and processed. This unlikely preparation results in a smooth, less acidic coffee.
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- Globetrotting for Java: The 12 Most Delicious Coffee Drinks From Around the World - The 12 Most Delicious Coffee Drinks From Around the World":
- Globetrotting for Java: The 12 Most Delicious Coffee Drinks From Around the World - Café Bombón - Sweet Coffee Treat from Spain
- Globetrotting for Java: The 12 Most Delicious Coffee Drinks From Around the World - Irish Coffee - Whiskey and Cream Mixture
- Globetrotting for Java: The 12 Most Delicious Coffee Drinks From Around the World - Yuanyang - Hong Kong's Popular Coffee-Tea Mix
- Globetrotting for Java: The 12 Most Delicious Coffee Drinks From Around the World - Café Touba - Senegalese Coffee Infused with Spices
- Globetrotting for Java: The 12 Most Delicious Coffee Drinks From Around the World - Egg Coffee - Vietnamese Egg Yolk Coffee
- Globetrotting for Java: The 12 Most Delicious Coffee Drinks From Around the World - Kopi Joss - Indonesian Coffee with Burning Coal
- Globetrotting for Java: The 12 Most Delicious Coffee Drinks From Around the World - Mazagran - Algerian Iced Coffee Invention
- Globetrotting for Java: The 12 Most Delicious Coffee Drinks From Around the World - Kopi Luwak - Indonesian Civet Coffee
Globetrotting for Java: The 12 Most Delicious Coffee Drinks From Around the World - Café Bombón - Sweet Coffee Treat from Spain
Originating in Valencia, Spain in the 1950s, Café Bombón has become a beloved sweet coffee drink across the country and beyond. This indulgent coffee experience combines the richness of espresso with the sweetness of condensed milk, resulting in a delightful blend of flavors.
At its core, Café Bombón features freshly brewed espresso served with condensed milk in a tall glass. The exact ratio can vary, but often it is close to 1:1 espresso to condensed milk. The condensed milk is gently poured into the glass before the espresso to create the layered effect that gives Café Bombón its name, which means ‘milk coffee’ in Valencian.
The interplay between the potent espresso and the sweet, creamy condensed milk is what makes this drink so craveable. The espresso provides an intense jolt of flavor while the silky condensed milk tempers the acidity and adds sweetness. When sipped, the distinct layers of flavor meld together in one satiny, caffeinated treat.
Café Bombón took off in popularity very quickly after its invention and spread throughout Spain and Portugal. Today it remains widely enjoyed in cafés for breakfast or as an afternoon pick-me-up. The classic preparation is simple, however some places add their own creative touches such as topping it with whipped cream or sprinkling cinnamon or cocoa powder over the foam.
Travelers visiting Spain should be sure to sample this iconic coffee drink. It offers a taste of Spanish café culture in addition to being delicious and energizing. Because it contains condensed milk rather than regular milk, a Café Bombón won’t easily curdle if left sitting for a bit, making it an ideal drink while sightseeing. The sweetness provides a nice balance to cope with the sometimes-potent Spanish espresso.
Globetrotting for Java: The 12 Most Delicious Coffee Drinks From Around the World - Irish Coffee - Whiskey and Cream Mixture
Travelers seeking to warm up and energize on chilly evenings need look no further than Irish Coffee. This comforting blended drink features smooth Irish whiskey enveloped in velvety sweetened cream and strong coffee. It offers a jolt of energy while soothing the spirit.
As the story goes, Irish coffee was born in 1943 when a flight to New York had to turn back to Ireland due to bad weather. Chef Joe Sheridan at Foynes Port offered the weary travelers his special hot whiskey drink to warm them up. After sampling it, one passenger asked if they were being served Brazilian coffee, inspiring Sheridan to add coffee to his Irish Whiskey recipe, and thus Irish Coffee was born.
The buzzy warmth of Irish whiskey coupled with subtly sweetened, freshly whipped cream and strong black coffee creates an indulgent treat for any whiskey fan. The contrast of flavors is compelling - the gentle smoky sweetness of Irish whiskey against intense coffee and velvety cream. It's an ideal after-dinner drink or as a final sipper with dessert. The coffee provides enough caffeine to avoid after-meal sluggishness while the alcohol relaxes the mind. It's decidedly more satisfying than a regular cup of joe.
When imbibing, Irish coffee aficionados recommend first giving the coffee black a quick taste to appreciate the full flavor of the brew. Next, take a small sip of the whiskey cream mixture to enjoy the harmony of the blended flavors. Finally, sample a bit of both coffee and cream together for the complete experience as the various flavors mingle on the palate.
Many pubs in Ireland serve classic Irish Coffee, however each establishment prides itself on its own particular take, whether using single malt or blended whiskey or opting for different brewing techniques. Discerning drinkers may request specific spirits or brews to customize the drink to their tastes. The technically correct ratio is 1 shot of whiskey, 1 teaspoon of brown sugar, and 4 ounces of coffee topped with lightly whipped thick cream.
Globetrotting for Java: The 12 Most Delicious Coffee Drinks From Around the World - Yuanyang - Hong Kong's Popular Coffee-Tea Mix
Hong Kong boasts a vibrant café culture all its own, with a unique roster of distinctive local drinks not found elsewhere. One quintessentially Hong Kong specialty coffee drink is Yuanyang, a popular mixture of coffee and Hong Kong-style milk tea. This creative combination arose from the city’s mixed Western and Chinese cultures to produce an energizing and flavorful caffeine experience.
Yuanyang makes use of two beloved local beverages – strong coffee using instant coffee powder or espresso, and rich, creamy Hong Kong milk tea made from a black tea blend. It features about 3 parts tea to 1 part coffee, although proportions can vary based on personal preference. The use of evaporated milk and condensed milk give the drink its characteristic tan hue and velvety texture. Sweetness comes from copious amounts of sugar. The tea imparts hints of malt and the coffee provides boldness.
The unlikely pairing actually works wonderfully together - the intermingling of tea and coffee makes for a complex drink that provides the best of both worlds. You get the strong caffeine kick and slight bitterness from the coffee and the aromatic, smooth flavors of Hong Kong milk tea all in one comforting cup. One can sip and enjoy the nutty, malty tea notes in one moment and then the intense coffee accents in the next.
Hong Kong locals adore Yuanyang and it's available at dai pai dongs (open air food stalls), cha chaan tengs (local diners), and tea shops across the city. It's especially favored as part of a classic Hong Kong-style breakfast, alongside dishes like congee, fried dough sticks, and egg tarts. The drink provides a serious caffeine boost to start the day. It's also a go-to for afternoon tea breaks and late night sipping.
Travelers visiting Hong Kong who want to partake in authentic local experiences absolutely must sample this specialty drink. The unique blend of flavors and textures encapsulates Hong Kong's one-of-a-kind food culture and heritage. It also offers visitors a chance to see how Western influences like coffee became incorporated into Chinese tea-drinking traditions, producing something new and wonderful.
Globetrotting for Java: The 12 Most Delicious Coffee Drinks From Around the World - Café Touba - Senegalese Coffee Infused with Spices
Café Touba offers a distinctly Senegalese coffee experience characterized by the addition of spices to create a bold, invigorating brew. While many may be familiar with coffee consumption across Western cultures, Café Touba provides insight into how coffee culture developed in West Africa by incorporating local ingredients and customs. For travelers seeking an authentic cultural experience, sampling this spicy, robust coffee offers a chance to explore Senegalese traditions surrounding coffee.
Unlike the typical Western preparations favoring milk and sugar, Café Touba highlights the use of cloves and peppercorns to provide a spicy kick. This imparts the drink with a pronounced aroma and distinct peppery flavor. The coffee itself uses the robust, earthy Touba bean, specially grown in the region of Touba, Senegal. These beans yield a full-bodied brew with hints of tobacco and wood smoke.
The origins of Café Touba date back to 1887 with the establishment of the Mouride Brotherhood, a Senegalese Sufi order founded by Cheikh Ahmadou Bamba. The drink was named for the holy city of Touba, where Bamba took up residence, and was created to honor him. Preparing and consuming Café Touba took on spiritual significance. The cloves and peppercorns used were thought to symbolize Bamba's teachings of kindness and openness.
For locals, drinking Café Touba facilitates communion and hospitality. It is often served from elaborate tea sets into tiny cups as part of important rituals like baptisms, weddings, and holidays. The small pours represent humility and coming together. Guests customarily drink three rounds, indicating satisfaction. Such traditions reveal fascinating insights into Senegalese values.
Travelers in Senegal mention being struck by Café Touba’s potent spiciness, unlike any coffee they’ve tried back home. The cultural traditions surrounding it also provide an immersive window into daily life. From the lively café culture of Dakar to quiet countryside rituals, one gains an appreciation for the drink’s heritage.
Globetrotting for Java: The 12 Most Delicious Coffee Drinks From Around the World - Egg Coffee - Vietnamese Egg Yolk Coffee
While Vietnam is renowned for its vibrant coffee culture, its signature coffee preparation, known as Egg Coffee, stands apart. Unlike Western coffee drinks, this unique concoction features beaten egg yolks to provide a luxuriously creamy, smooth mouthfeel and heady richness unlike any regular black coffee. For travelers seeking quintessentially Vietnamese coffee experiences, sampling Egg Coffee offers a chance to savor an ingenious creation that exemplifies Vietnamese ingenuity.
Egg Coffee came about in Hanoi during the post-war era when dairy products became scarce. Nguyen Van Giang, a bartender at the Sofitel Legend Metropole hotel, responded to the milk shortage by experimenting with alternatives, eventually landing on whisked egg yolk as a substitute. Egg yolk proved an inspired choice, not only standing in for milk but also enhancing the coffee’s texture. The trace of yolk also imparted subtle flavor depth.
To make Egg Coffee, egg yolks are whisked with sugar into a creamy froth then frothed before being spooned over dark roast Vietnamese coffee made using a small metal drip filter. The beaten eggs create a head of foam not unlike that of a properly poured cappuccino. However, instead of being light and airy, the foam is rich, creamy, and smooth, almost chewy in texture. Each sip provides hints of caramel and custard underlying the deep roasted coffee notes.
Beyond novelty appeal, what makes Egg Coffee special is how every sip provides an indulgent experience. The velvety sweet foam melds sublimely with the coffee in a way regular milk cannot, adding body and rounding out any harsh acidic notes. You instantly understand why Giang opted for egg froth over other dairy substitutes - it adds something irreplaceable. The drink feels like a liquid dessert.
Globetrotting for Java: The 12 Most Delicious Coffee Drinks From Around the World - Kopi Joss - Indonesian Coffee with Burning Coal
Kopi Joss offers a portal into Indonesia’s distinctive coffee culture that developed outside Western influences. Unlike most global variations of coffee that showcase milk, sugar or flavorings, Kopi Joss spotlights a unique roasting method – adding red-hot charcoal to the brew. This imparts intriguing smoky depth unlike any other coffee experience. Intrepid foodies should add this to their Indonesian food and drink bucket lists for unforgettable flavor as well as cultural immersion.
To create Kopi Joss, hot sand is first mounded in a small pan called a “dawet” then lit charcoal is placed atop the sand, with the coffee served along the rim surrounding the coal. As the beans brew, the charcoal’s heat releases oils and sugars, enriching the body and adding subtle hints of smoke. Locals advise drinking Kopi Joss promptly before the coal fully extinguishes to enjoy the subtle smokiness at its peak. The effect adds incredible complexity, bringing out tobacco, vanilla and cocoa notes that complement the coffee’s innate flavors.
Kopi Joss came about thanks to Indonesia’s prolific kopi traditions that developed independently from Western norms. Without access to cream or sugar to soften coffee’s bitterness, Indonesians innovated by roasting methods and brewing techniques to mellow the intrinsic acidity and cultivate sweeter flavors. Another likely influence was the widespread use of charcoal for cooking, leading vendors to experiment with using embers to alter coffee’s profile.
Seeking out an authentic Kopi Joss experience offers unparalleled insight into Indonesia’s rich kopi tape (coffee shop) culture. Locals gather not just for caffeine but to socialize, discuss business or politics and soak up the atmosphere. When visiting a warung kopi (coffee shop) like Warung Tresno in Yogyakarta, travelers can watch the theatrical preparation ritual while inhaling the charcoal’s aroma. The first sip never fails to impress – strong, earthy Indonesian beans enveloped in a faintly sweet smokiness unlike any Western brew.
Globetrotting for Java: The 12 Most Delicious Coffee Drinks From Around the World - Mazagran - Algerian Iced Coffee Invention
While iced coffee has become ubiquitous worldwide as a refreshing, well-loved drink, its origin story can be traced back to the Mazagran, an Algerian iced coffee concoction invented by French soldiers stationed there in the 1840s. Understanding the backstory of this drink provides insight into the spread of coffee culture and evolution of new preparations like cold brew.
The town of Mazagran in Algeria saw conflict between French colonial forces and local Ottoman troops during the 1840s. Stationed there, the French soldiers found strong coffee crucial for staying alert. However, the intense Algerian heat made a steaming cup unappealing. To cool down while getting their caffeine fix, the troops started pouring strong coffee over ice, also adding water and sugar. This improvised iced coffee was dubbed “Mazagran” after their outpost.
Beyond merely cooling coffee down, the troops’ Mazagran had origins as a wine-coffee mixed drink that later evolved into a chilled coffee beverage. By the late 1700s, a wine and coffee concoction called “Mazagrin” had become popular in France as an alcoholic digestif. The soldiers in Algeria likely drew inspiration from this, omitting the wine but keeping coffee as the star. The result was refreshing and restorative while energizing.
The iconic drink quickly spread through the ranks stationed around Algeria and back to France. By the late 1800s, Mazagran became a sensation in Parisian cafés. The Algerian city of Mazagran gained fame for producing the strongest coffee beans used in the original drink, making true Mazagran a prestigious commodity. As it gained acclaim, versions appeared containing additional ingredients like rum, mint, lemon—similar to an early iced latte.
Beyond France, Mazagran also spread across Europe and to America as new iced coffee preparations increased in popularity. In the early 1900s in Germany, a Munich brewery produced “Salvator-Mazagran,” a non-alcoholic drink combining coffee and malt. In America, the Buffalo Brewing Company created its own riff on the classic, bottling “Buffalo Mazagran” starting in 1909.
Globetrotting for Java: The 12 Most Delicious Coffee Drinks From Around the World - Kopi Luwak - Indonesian Civet Coffee
Kopi Luwak offers one of the most unique coffee experiences in the world. This exotic coffee hails from Indonesia and is made from coffee beans that have passed through the digestive tract of the Asian palm civet. The civets consume the ripest coffee cherries, but do not fully digest the beans inside. The beans are then collected from the civet droppings, washed, roasted and brewed to produce an exceptionally smooth, rich coffee revered for its rarity and price tag.
While the notion of consuming coffee beans excreted by a wild animal may seem off-putting at first, Kopi Luwak connoisseurs attest that the unusual process results in a one-of-a-kind flavor profile and sublime mouthfeel. The enzymes in the civet’s stomach act to breakdown the bitterness and acidity naturally present in coffee beans. What emerges after roasting is a brew that is mellow, earthy and exceptionally smooth, with hints of caramel and chocolate. The lack of bitterness means no cream or sugar is required, allowing the coffee’s nuanced flavor to shine. The body is almost syrupy, coating the tongue. Even skeptics find themselves won over after their first sip.
Seeking out authentic, wild-sourced Kopi Luwak is a highlight for many travelers exploring Indonesia’s lush coffee regions. They have the rare chance to taste a coffee completely unique from any other global coffee styles. At dedicatd Luwak coffee shops in Bali, Java or Sumatra, guests can sample different varieties while learning the fascinating production process. Local farmers typically use small traps to collect civet droppings from wild palms each day, ensuring no animals are caged or force-fed. The beans are then carefully hand-sorted and dried in the sun before small-batch roasting.