I have been asked a lot recently, why i sell only Italian coffee ? and i always answer with just one word, Tradition.
I have decided now to expand on that.
Coffee was introduced into Italy through the great merchants of Venice who had very strong links with the Arab traders who were so powerful in the Mediterranean in the 15th century. The first Italian Coffee house was opened in the 16th century and there are actual Coffee houses in Italy that have been selling Coffee to people continuously since 1720.
Due in most part to the many centuries that Coffee has been consumed in Italy it is held in a very high regard and rightly so in my ever so humble opinion. What i really love about Italian Coffee is that they have their priorities right, they build from the ground up, without doubt they understand that the most important part of Coffee is the Espresso, this after all is the foundation of all Coffees, everything should be built from this but unfortunately it this is not the case with most large chains of Coffee shops, the likes of Starbucks and Costa Coffee sell textured milk with a hint of a Coffee flavour, i have for my sins tasted many Espressos recently from the larger chains and i have to say for the most part they were foul !!!
Who cares if your Barista ( usually a young fella with tattoos and an ironic beard )can make a pretty picture on top of your cappuccino if the actual Coffee tastes awful and by the way a Barista means Barman in Italian and they are usually highly trained and in their forties in Italy not someone who is in college and had a half days training !!
Did you know that if you ordered a latte in Italy you would get a glass of milk ? for that is exactly what you have just ordered.
Any how that is just a little taste as to why i love and sell Italian Coffee, i like to think i am not just selling Coffee but a bit of tradition to and that has to taste good.
next time i am going to touch on where and when Italians drink certain Coffees and the different regional varieties that are available in Italy.