For many of us, a cup of joe is the magic needed to kick-start a morning. It’s the perfect accompaniment to 8am meetings, or when one needs to focus on high-intensity projects. So intrinsically linked is it to our lives that over two billion cups of it are downed every day.
Whether it’s enjoyed black, on the rocks or with a splash of milk, coffee takes on many forms in different countries. In Italy, for instance, the drink of choice is a caffè — an espresso shot with crema served in a dainty cup. Singapore has gained a reputation for its signature kopi, a fragrant yet potent full-bodied brew made from robusta beans roasted with margarine or lard.
Here are seven types of coffee served differently around the world.
There’s something about having coffee served in a cylindrical pot with a sleek plunger that conjures to mind slow romantic mornings where sipping coffee is a luxury and not a necessity to jolt your senses. The French press method works by simply running hot water through fresh coffee grounds to produce a rich, aromatic brew – best savored in bed.
The base of most Western variations, an expresso is also the most commonly asked for coffee in Italy. Sidle up to a bar (what they call cafes in the European country) and ask for a caffè or an espresso Romano if you’re feeling adventurous. The latter comes with a swath of lemon peel that gives it a tangy flavor, and a spoonful of sugar to balance it out.
It’s easy to see why the Irish coffee is arguably the naughtiest version on this list, combining both caffeine and alcohol for double the kick. The rich, aromatic brew is infused with a generous shot of Irish whiskey, with a spoonful of brown sugar stirred in, then topped with a thick heavy cream – it’s original recipe calls for non-whipped versions.
While Western versions of coffee tend to use arabica beans, this Singaporean brew is typically made with robusta beans that have been freshly roasted with margarine or even lard for that wonderful fragrance, brewed in a long-spouted pot inside a coffee sock that acts as an infuser, then artfully poured into a small cup and infused with condensed or evaporated milk (never fresh, as it will not hold up well) and a spoonful of sugar.
A concoction for those with a sweet tooth. This cream-based caffeinated treat is made with two shots of espresso in a standard coffee cup, then laced with whipped cream in place of milk and sugar, swirled to create a tower on top of the drink. It is then topped with chocolate shavings, and the coffee is sipped through the creamy layer.
Wondering when the grounds will finally dissolve in your cup of coffee? Stop stirring; the special bit about Turkish coffee is that it’s prepared unfiltered, which means you sip your coffee with the grounds. The roasted and ground beans are simmered in a special copper pot called a cezve (pronounced pronounced “jezz-va”) and is a strong brew.
This is the coffee that has sparked rows between Australia and New Zealand over which was the first country to invent this concoction. Heated debate aside, this milky cuppa is made with an espresso base–single or double–and topped with velvety microfoam-ed milk (steamed milk that has been frothed and folded). The mark of a good flat white is one that has crema, the orange caramelized layer at the top of a shot.
The original article was written by Meryl Koh on Michelin Guide Singapore.