St. Drogo’s revenge aka coffee coffee coffee aka Signe’s first (known) cultural faux pas

A full update on the last few (insanely busy) days is coming a bit later, but as I am waiting for my first class I want to make a quick note about Italian coffee.

Photo courtesy of roomie Sarah’s facebook

First off, unsurprisingly, it is really good. The giant American paper cup of milk, sugar and bubbly foam simply does not exist here. Instead, you get a concentrated teacup-sized serving of whatever you decide to order.¬†What you order and when is extremely important. I learned that the hard way last night at a “language exchange” at a tiny bar in Trastevere. Craving a cup and keenly aware of the late hour, I ordered a carefully selected noncaffeinated cappuccino.

As soon as the waitress set the cup down, my choice felt far less carefully selected. Our host immediately started shaking his hands at me, explaining cappuccino is a morning drink, and only coffee or espresso is acceptable later on. I had, in fact, offended the entire country with my late night order.

We headed home pretty late, and sometime around 3 a.m. I realized the cappuccino was very, very much caffeinated. At approximately 5 a.m. I swore off Italian coffee forever. At exactly 9 a.m. I made a mad dash to the coffee machine in the university’s basement. It was delicious.

*Quick note—my titles don’t seem to allow punctuation like apostrophes. I’m equally horrified.

6 September 2010 · Comments

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