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A Guide to Traditional Italian Coffee

Espresso Cup

Have you had your morning coffee yet?

Many different culinary elements are woven throughout countless cultures—chocolate, wine, olive oil, and coffee. Today, we’ll be focusing on the one that gets us up in the morning and keeps us powering through the afternoon, Italian coffee. This delicious element of Italian cuisine is slightly different than the Brazilian roasts that are popular throughout American coffee shops. How is traditional Italian coffee different?


This term translates to coffee, but it refers to a shot of espresso. This type of Italian coffee is served in a small espresso cup and ordered throughout the day. If you want an after-dinner treat, order a cafee corretto, or a shot of espresso combined with a shot of liquor. The most common liquors include grappa, sambucca, or cognac.


This Italian coffee drink isn’t just popular in Italian cuisine. A cappuccino typically consists of 1/3 espresso, 1/3 steamed milk, and 1/3 foam. Italians have very specific times of day that they associate with certain foods. Since cappuccinos are milk-heavy drinks, they are associated with breakfast and are never consumed after 11 AM.


If you’re used to ordering macchiatos at Starbucks, you might be surprised to see what the authentic version of this Italian coffee drink looks like. A macchiato is espresso with a small amount of steamed milk, less than a latte or cappuccino. Since it’s lighter on the dairy and froth, Italians will consume this Italian coffee delight at any time during the day.

Caffe Latte

Many people are surprised to learn that ordering a latte in Italy just gets you a tall glass of cold milk! What we know as a latte is actually called a caffe latte in Italy. It’s made from 1/3 espresso and 2/3 steamed milk with little to no foam on top. Due to its higher milk content, this drink would also typically be consumed only before 11 AM.

Enjoy Authentic Italian Recipes from Basta Pasta

For over 12 years, Basta Pasta has been providing Marylanders with delicious Italian specials cooked from fresh, delicious, high-quality ingredients. Enjoy a taste of classic Italian food with spectacular pasta dishes, unlimited salad and breadsticks, and sumptuous fine Italian wines. To make a reservation at our Timonium location, contact us online or give us a call at (410) 308-0838. To make a reservation at our Fallston location, contact us online or give us a call at (410) 692-5200. To find out more about our menu, follow us on Facebook and Twitter!

This entry was posted on Friday, March 31st, 2017 at 2:15 pm. Both comments and pings are currently closed.