When it comes to coffee and the several beverages you can make with it, there is one Italian trademark that we all love. We are talking about cappuccino, one of the most popular, distinctive, and world-renowned espresso-based drinks.
Experts and insiders say cappuccino is gaining more and more popularity around the world, placing itself alongside espresso. Although half the espresso shots are daily brewed in Italy, the hot frothy drink is widely consumed pretty much everywhere, thanks to the several coffee chains including it in their menus and the possibility of preparing numerous and tasty variations.
Ideal in the morning and still tasty all day long, preferably requiring homemade ingredients; however you brew it, cappuccino combines espresso and steamed, frothy hot milk.
Who invented cappuccino? Contrary to what one might think, the origins of the drink are not to be found in Italy but in Seventeenth Century Austria. Towards the end of the century the defeated Ottoman armies fleeing Austria left behind tons of bags of coffee that would have been later donated to a Polish nobleman named Jerzy Franciszek Kulczycki, known for his significant role in the victory against the Turks. He then gave birth to Zur Blauen Flasche, the first Viennese coffee shop, where Father Marco D’Aviano, a Friulian monk belonging to the Capuchin Order, had the chance to taste coffee.
As he found its aroma and taste too strong, he asked whether it was possible to add honey and milk, inevitably lightening its dark colour and making it like the one of the Order’s garments. That is why nowadays we all refer at it as “cappuccino”, namely the translation of the German word Kapuziner.
Nevertheless, it is only during the Twentieth century and the post war period that we work with cappuccino as we see today, after the invention of the espresso machine by Italian employer Achille Gaggia, which was able to foam milk.
Cappuccino and espresso differ a lot in terms of preparation process. To properly prepare a delicious cappuccino, you will need an espresso machine, allowing you to pull a single or a double-shot espresso, and a microfoam you are going to use to make steamed milk. Furthermore, they taste quite different since espresso coffee is stronger and more intense. As it basically represents the base of a beverage that also needs foamed milk so the intensity of cappuccino is significantly lessened. Finally, as already noted, cappuccino consists of a few ingredients, among which one can obviously find black coffee.
Since coffee beans are different in terms of taste, as each one has a peculiar roast, origin and processing methods granting a unique taste, there is in fact a wide range of types to choose from. However, many factors and subtleties may adjust the flavour of the beverage, which is why cappuccino lovers should be careful when it comes to choosing among different varieties and blends.
For those who are up into a very sweet cappuccino, Ethiopian coffee might be a good option. If you feel like tasting a cappuccino whose taste is intense and captivating, holding a chocolate and nutty flavour, you probably need to choose between South American varieties coming from Brazil, Guatemala, and Costa Rica.
Besides, to prepare a wonderful Italian cappuccino, we feel like suggesting a medium-dark roasted blend, combining carefully selected Arabica and Robusta beans and providing a persistent taste.
That is pretty much all you need to know about this delightful foamy sweet-tasting Italian beverage known all over the world and appreciated by millions of people everywhere!