Coffee is a large part of almost every culture in the world. It is the drink of choice to perk up and carry on with different activities during the day. With this in mind, there is an emerging foodie community that has begun traveling simply to eat and drink. Some cultures in the world have truly perfected brewing coffee and mixing flavors to make a fantastic cup. The next time you take a trip, skip the chain coffeehouse and find yourself a unique and rewarding cup of coffee abroad. I have compiled a list of countries you should visit just to drink the coffee they make there.
- Mexico - There is way more to Mexico than just the fun of Cancun or the relaxation of Puerto Vallarta. If you take your coffee on the sweeter side you can't go wrong with Mexico's traditional <i>Café de Olla</i>. It is a blissful combination of cinnamon, piloncillo (also know as panela), which is an unrefined cane sugar, anise seeds, and orange peel. The essential part of brewing this coffee is the earthen clay pot that gives it the unique flavor. After it is brewed in the earthen clay pot it is allowed to rest for a bit, this gives the coffee grounds a bit to settle to the bottom. Once settled the coffee is ladled from the top and served hot. Typically it is served in cooler parts of Mexico and in more rural locations, this cup of coffee is something you should find the time to enjoy while you are on a visit to Mexico.
- Turkey - The one place in the world where you can visit two continents at the same time. It is where Europe meets Asia. While this particular type of coffee can be found in many different countries in the Middle East, it is in particularly popularly drunk in Turkey. Türk kahvesi, is made by boiling finely ground coffee, water, and sugar. Once the mixture is close to boiling over it served in small individual cups. The remainder is returned to boil, which gives it that rich, bold flavor. It can be served with a Turkish Delight. If you love bold coffee Türk kahvesi, is 100% the perfect flavor combo for you. Then take the time to see some of the oldest and most beautiful cities in the world such as Ephesus and Istanbul. Relax in a cave hotel in Cappadocia and take a dip in the Mediterranean in Fethiye.
- Italy - Naturally, Italy would make this list for their Espresso. It is expressed under 132 pounds of pressure. This caffeine staple is made with just under 7 grams of coffee and it made FAST. As such, you should drink espresso quickly, which often means you stand and down it before the "crema", the coffee's oils, which acts like a shield protecting the espresso from losing all the wonderful aromas, dissolves into the espresso. There are certain kinds of espresso you may have heard about such as an Espresso Romano which is apparently no where to be found in Italy (http://werokitchen.com/blog/2016/11/29/espresso-romano). Simple espresso can be found everywhere around Italy. Stop in almost any cafe in Italy and stand up and drink your espresso but make sure you do it before 11 A.M. most Italians stop drinking coffee after that time.
- Australia - A surprise to the list, this island continent is emerging as one of the biggest consumers of coffee the world over. Australia is the birthplace of the Flat White. While you can certainly get a similar drink at a local chain coffeehouse, it is nothing like the smooth taste of a Flat White in Australia. Typically it is made by using a single or a double shot espresso and then layering foamed milk on top, keeping the layers of espresso and milk apart. Enjoy sipping a warm drink during Australia's winter, before a hike in the Blue Mountains!
- Ethiopia - The Birth Place of coffee! Ethiopia should top your list if you are a coffee consumer. Where would we be if it wasn't for Ethiopia developing coffee? This is the one place in the world where you can partake in a truly historically rich coffee ceremony. The coffee ceremony is a time for socializing and drinking together. Coffee isn't meant to be drunk alone. In the ceremony, the coffee beans are roasted over an open flame. Once roasted they are then ground by hand with a mortar and pestle. The grounds are then added to a jebena, a black terracotta coffee pot, after which the coffee is distributed to everyone in small cups. In Ethiopia, you can forget your different types of milk added to your coffee. Some take their coffee with a bit of sugar, salt, honey, or with a healthy dollop of butter. Don't miss Ethiopia if you love coffee, it is a must!
*Bonus* Hawai'i - Aloha to some of the most delicious coffee in the U.S. Hawai'i is the only state that grows and sells their own coffee beans. Some of the best beans are grown on the Big Island of Hawai'i which is where Kona Coffee comes from. Due to the volcanic ash in the soil, it aids in the growth of coffee plants. Kona Coffee has a very smooth, citrusy taste. It is one of the most expensive kinds of coffee you can purchase due to the labor in the U.S. and the area in which Kona is grown. Just be careful when purchasing Kona coffee! Often times it is 10% Kona and blended with a different coffee, as such you aren't tasting Kona, you are tasting the other coffee and you lose that wonderful citrus taste. It is expensive but 100% Kona is fantastically satisfying if you love a light to medium taste to your coffee. Stop in Kailua-Kona on the Big Island for a bag of 100% Kona before you visit Volcano National Park.
That is it for my list of some of the best places in the world to buy coffee. Do you have any places to add to this list? Have you tried any of the suggested coffees from my list?
Dina is a coffee loving military spouse and mom to boys. A travel advisor and family travel journalist. She shares her love of travel and helps families and couples plan dream vacations. Visit her website at http://www.kithandkintravels.com