Coffee in France

Saturday 16th September

Coffee in France is a thing.

Now to explain the coffee in France – and why I have reverted to the days of old (1983-84) when Geoff and I backpacked through Europe and I had to consume all hot drinks without milk (except ghulvein of course).

Back then coffee was an essential (truth be told, it still is now, at least one cup per day), but expensive treat when backpacking. All the same, the addition of milk overwhelmes the flavour. Today there are several versions of Café (or coffee). In France, a café is a shot of espresso served in small cups.

Café Allongé is also known as Americano. It’s a watered-down version of espresso made with hot water. 

Café Noisette is a shot of espresso plus a dash of hot milk or cream. The French word “noisette” translates to hazelnut in English, but in terms of French coffee, it refers to the color, not the taste.

Café Crème (or Café Latte) –  When in need of a cappuccino, order a café crème. It’s a classic espresso with steamed milk topped with a lot of foam.

Café au Lait – Unless you want a bowl of milk and coffee, don’t order a café au lait. Typically, it’s a beverage enjoyed at home with breakfast in a bowl. It’s basically a classic drip coffee made with a lot of milk.

Cappuccino – is an espresso with steamed milk, foam and  some cocoa powder sprinkled on top.

Café Viennoisis a bit more decadent than your average latte. This drink is light espresso, chocolate powder and whipped cream.

Café Gourmand – something I am yet to try. A cup of coffee with plate of tasty little desserts.

Although I understand the French tend to drink their coffee strong and hot, I would have to disagree. Coffee is served much stronger back home.

Then there’s the various versions of iced coffee but as I am not a fan so I won’t critique it.

French tea is hot, straight and usually not sweet. Which is perfect for me. 

As for anyone who seeks out dairy alternatives than in all of Europe it will be difficult to come by almond milk, soy milk, rice milk and skim milk. For the most part, if you order a drink with milk, it will be straight up regular whole milk.

Now as for hot chocolate – well that is a specialty that I am yet to savour.

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