Three Unwritten Coffee Laws

Let’s take a break from reviewing serious laws that can either break or make us. So let’s have coffee. And since we are into laws. I’d like to talk about coffee and its unwritten laws. You don’t know that, do you?

My grandma, my aunt, my mother. They all get incredulous to disgusted looks when they are in Italy and want to have a coffee. Why? Because they don’t abide by the unwritten laws on which Italian coffee culture is based.

Rule # 1: A cappuccino has a sweet particle in the morning and in the afternoon!

Coffee with milk foam is breakfast coffee – and only that

There are a few coffee drinks that are only drunk in Italy for breakfast or at least only in the morning. The cappuccino is one of these. A drink that my grandma and aunt like to consume in the afternoon. The Italians would even be able to cope with that. The combination with stuzzichini, salty and savory snacks, or with lunch, drives the sweat beads on your forehead. In any case, my relatives ensure that they shake their heads without understanding.

In the meantime, it no longer shocks anyone in Italy, especially in the country’s centers and metropolises, if, like in Germany, you have a cappuccino in the afternoon. Even if this is not what the traditional Italian coffee culture intended. However, anyone who eats olives, chips or fried mini-Panzerotti with a “breakfast coffee” will be punished with an appropriate look of disgust or the teasing of Italians sitting around.

Incidentally, this rule can be applied 1: 1 to all other coffee drinks, which tend to be classified as breakfast coffees. In addition to the (normal or cold) cappuccino, the latte macchiato, which is particularly popular in Germany, actually a “coffee” for children in Italy, the marocchino and its relatives, which I will discuss in more detail below, and the caffé latte.

Rule # 2: You drink the water before the coffee so that you can taste the aromas better!

Coffee and water go together

As a rule, Italians always drink their coffee with a sip of water. It is important that the water is drunk beforehand. It should refresh the palate so that you can taste the aromas of the coffee better. If you drank it afterward, the taste of the coffee would be wiped out of your mouth immediately. And for real coffee lovers, this is an absolute faux pas.

Rule # 3: You lick from hosts, this also includes the barista of the bar, not the coffee spoon!

The spoon belongs in the coffee, not in the mouth

In the bar and also when you are a guest of other people at home, it is decent that you do not lick the coffee spoon. That’s what the saucer is for. This may surprise German cappuccino lovers why you shouldn’t spoon the foam out of the cup or why you shouldn’t lick the rest of the crema on the spoon. But that’s not really common in Italy. It remains to be seen whether there are more hygienic or aesthetic reasons for licking the spoon as bad. And to be honest: I also do not always strictly adhere to this 3rd of the unwritten rules of Italian coffee culture.

Final Thoughts

Nobody seems to abide by these rules anymore. You just drink coffee the way you want it and enjoy its savory taste. Make your own coffee with the best coffee makers available and you don’t have to mind if you drink it in the morning or afternoon. If you are one who wants to experiment with coffee, do so with Ninja Specialty Coffee Maker. Read a review from leascoffee.com. So go ahead and delight in the best coffee in town.