Fed up with all the faux-Italian specialty coffee drinks served at your local chain?
Try brewing up one of these exotic concoctions for a delicious new experience. Who knows, you might just find yourself at the forefront of the next big trend!
Thai/Vietnamese Iced Coffee
In tropical regions like Thailand and Vietnam, many people like their caffeine fix cold and sweet, pouring canned sweetened condensed milk over ice (or even homemade) and then adding coffee. See our recipe for this tasty drink now.
New Orleans Chicory Blend
Chicory root has been used as a coffee substitute or additive all over the world, especially in India and Europe.
Now, thanks to their French heritage, some of New Orleans’ most famous restaurants serve a signature coffee/chicory blend.
Chicory cuts the harshness of the coffee and lends it an almost chocolaty flavor.
Most cafes serve it with half coffee and half hot milk.
Espresso with lime may sound strange, but try it with a nice, fruity coffee and it will all start to make sense. Brew your espresso over a couple slices of lime, and add milk to taste if you like.
This German drink is more like a coffee float, with chilled coffee, milk, sweetener, and a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Top with whipped cream for a truly decadent dessert!
Believe it or not, these little instant granules are the standard everywhere from Turkey to Paris to Baja California. Even Greek Frappés, iced blended drinks, start with instant coffee.
You can find coffee made from fresh beans in all of these places if you look hard enough, but sometimes, it’s best to simply dive into the local customs, especially on busy mornings.
Can’t decide whether you want espresso or a milky, sweet specialty drink? Try this Austrian favorite: put two shots of espresso in a standard size coffee cup and fill the rest of the cup with whipped cream.
Sip the espresso through the creamy topping for a sweet treat.
Greek, Georgian, or Turkish Coffee
In many of these countries you’ll be more likely to find Nescafé at your corner café, but if you can find the real thing (brewed into tiny espresso-like cups), you won’t be disappointed.
It’s a strong shot like espresso, but it’s rich with pulverized coffee particles that sit at the bottom of the cup. You can replicate this drink at home using a stovetop Turkish coffee pot and a super-fine, powdery grind.
In the cold, wet winters of Ireland (or anywhere, really), nothing beats a shot of Irish whiskey stirred into your mug of hot coffee.
For a non-Irish version, try Frangelico, Amarretto, or a shot of Bailey’s. Orange liqueur, cherry schnapps, and peppermint also work well.
This drink is of course best enjoyed responsibly and after 5 o’clock… or anytime on a relaxing weekend.
You’re probably familiar with the espressos, lattes, cappuccinos, and mochas common in Italy. But did you know that milk-based drinks are considered morning-only beverages by locals?
Italians don’t drink cappuccinos after 10 a.m., so stick with the more potent espresso after your first morning cup – and drink it quickly, standing at the counter, for a truly authentic experience!
What’s your favorite way to serve coffee on special occasions?
About Mike Quinn
Mike Quinn spent 20 years in the US Army and traveled extensively all over the world. As part of his military service, Mike sampled coffee and tea from all virtually every geographic region, from the beans from the plantation of an El Salvadorian Army Colonel to "Chi" in Iraq to Turkish Coffee in the Turkish Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan. He spent nearly a decade in the Republic of Korea where he was exposed to all forms of traditional teas. Mike formerly owned and operated Cup And Brew, an online espresso and coffee equipment retail operation.