Monday 25 November 2013

The Art of Serving Coffee

Un caffè e un tè a Torremaggiore
Whenever & wherever one goes into a coffee bar in Italy,
there is a preset ritual which is usually observed: 
order your drinks at 'la cassa', pay, pick up your receipt
& take it to the barista, who will then set out
a saucer complete with spoon, followed by
un bicchiere di acqua. He will then prepare
your caffè and set the cup in the saucer with a 
flourish & a smile.

There's no need to ask for the water - it's a generations old ritual
& part of coffee drinking etiquette....but not if you're
'stranieri', as hubby & I discovered at MaxiMall yesterday.

We'd eaten lunch at Apollo & called back in for a coffee at the end
of our shopping trip. I took the receipt to the barista & asked for
'un caffè e un ginseng'. The saucers were duly set on the
counter top, hubby's ginseng prepared & my coffee made
but no water appeared....I wasn't impressed!
Hubby asked the barista for 2 glasses and a fair tirade of
grumbling fell from the guy's lips, the gist of
which was that we hadn't asked for water so how was he
supposed to know we wanted water...besides, 'stranieri' 
never drink water with their coffee, they don't appreciate it.

I may not be Italian, but I certainly like to drink my coffee the
Italian way.

Un caffè e un ginseng


  1. Oh! But "plastic" cups????
    Not at all how it should be.

    1. The 'poor south' is very much a 'throw away' society - it's very rare we get a 'glass' of water

    2. Wow! I think if they did that here, in Milan, the cafè would be torched!