Europe has become synonymous with great little quaint cafes, coffee bars, and tea rooms. We’ve compiled a list of some of the coolest coffee shops and cafes in Europe to help inspire you as you plan your next European holiday.
There is something about coffee that brings people together. The warm inviting aromas entice you in, encourage you to sit, and welcome you to experience your surroundings rather than just see them through your camera lens. One of the best parts about traveling is trying local cafes and restaurants and immersing yourself in the culture. A coffee house provides the unique atmosphere for patrons to sit in solitude and people watch one minute, but then mix and mingle and connect with other patrons the next minute.
If you’re looking for that quintessential coffee house café experience, then Europe has got to be on the top of your list to visit. Europe has become synonymous with great little quaint cafes, coffee bars, and tea rooms. We’ve compiled a list of some of the coolest coffee shops and cafes in Europe to help inspire you as you plan your next European holiday, because at the end of the day you can never have too much coffee.
The Antico Caffe Greco | Rome, Italy
As the oldest café and coffee house in Rome, this place has quite the history. Since opening its doors in 1760 the café has served coffee and food to some historical and famous figures over the years. This is your chance to sit in the same spot as some of the most famous artists, thinkers, philosophers, politicians, and composers of history and today.
Or Espresso | Brussels, Belgium
This industrial-looking coffee shop roasts their own coffee and are even distributors. They even have their own school teaching up-and-coming baristas the art of all things coffee, pretty cool.
Tim Wendelboe | Oslo, Norway
Tim Wendelboe brings fresh, creative and energetic ideas to coffee and his café. He continues to offer unique and interesting combinations and has spurred on the coffee craze in Oslo specifically.
Café Central | Vienna, Austria
It’s not often you can have a cup of delicious coffee in a rare 19th century historical building but you can at Café Central. This famous and beautiful coffee house opened in 1876 and has been enticing people in ever since.
New York Café | Budapest, Hungary
Nicknamed ‘The Most Beautiful Café in the World’, the New York Café is one of the most elaborate and exquisite coffee house and tea rooms around. Very popular with long lines, this café serves Austro-Hungarian cuisine and sweet treats all day. You’ll feel like you stepped back into the 1800s when you step through these doors.
The next time you’re on a European holiday make sure to take the time to sit and experience the café lifestyle that Europe has perfected. Try to learn how to order your favorite coffee drink in the native language (trust us, they’ll appreciate the effort of you trying even if it’s not perfect), people watch, don’t be afraid to make conversation with others around you, ask for recommendations for a great coffee or dinner spot, and open your heart and mind to your surroundings. You may be surprised, you could go in for a coffee but leave with an experience to remember.
Cinco de Mayo is right around the corner and what’s better than indulging in authentic Mexican food on this festive day? Here are 5 amazing Mexican dishes you can try at home.
Cinco de Mayo is right around the corner and what’s better than indulging in authentic Mexican food on this festive day? This day holds much importance to people living in Mexico and some parts of the USA as it portrays a good moment in history. So it doesn’t matter if you can’t go to a Mexican restaurant this year or see the parade, you can easily whip up some amazing recipes that are sure to make your day!
Enchiladas are simple to make and will give you an authentic Mexican feel while you devour it. Get your hands on the tomatillos, garlic, onion, jalapeños, poblano, shredded chicken, lime, and tortillas. Broil all the vegetables and then toss them into a blender to create a smooth sauce. Then all you need to do is layer up 8 to 10-inch tortillas, insert your shredded chicken (or meat), pour the sauce over your tortillas, and finally, bake it altogether, to get the Enchiladas Verde hot, delicious & ready!
Chalupas are some of the most common food items opted for on Cinco de Mayo. You can easily make them at home now as slow cookers are here to help you. Add the meat, spices, beans, and vegetables into the crockpot and let them sit for 4 to 6 hours. You can carry on making other delicious for Cinco de Mayo while this gets done. Once the timer is up, all you need to do is shred up the meat, layer the contents from the crockpot onto a tortilla base, add some cheese on top, and voila! Your crockpot chalupas are ready.
What’s a Mexican festival without burritos? Add a spin to it and start you Cinco de Mayo with a breakfast burrito. Add all the ingredients that you would like in the burrito and start your day right! A saucy breakfast burrito with beans, eggs, and cheese is sure to put you in a great mood while you stay at home.
Indulge in delicious variations of tacos this day! While people mainly opt for beef in their tacos but if you don’t want it, then you can easily switch the beef with chicken or beans. To make your crispy tacos, toss in your preference of meat and vegetables in spiced salsa, add a bit of lime on top to give your tacos that boost in flavor and enjoy! You can create different variations of these tacos and snack on them all day long, you can be creative with this one.
And finally, Cinco de Mayo is incomplete without red salsa and nachos. The best thing about this is that you don’t even need too many ingredients to make it! Get your hands on some tomatoes, spicy jalapeños, cilantro, some onions, and lime; to make the perfect dip, pair it up with your choice of nachos. And don’t be tempted to buy ready-made salsa from your local supermarket, they just don’t taste the same, as a freshly made salsa, and its definitely not as fun.
While this Cinco de Mayo is going to be all about staying at home this year, you might as well indulge in cooking some of the greatest Mexican food! These recipes are simple and easy to make, and make sure to have fun while you’re creating these dishes. Viva Mexico!
Tea is one of the most consumed beverages around the world and tee rituals & ceremonies vary from country to country. This article showcases 7 tea rituals from across the globe.
While sitting staring endlessly at my desktop, drinking tea and indulging in chocolate, thinking of what the next topic should be, should I write about my latest travels to Russia, or about my recent trip to the surreal land of Iceland, or considering its Ramadan, should I write about this beautiful Islamic tradition. As I continue drinking and enjoying my cup of tea and trying to decide what to write about, it came to me, the thing that am drinking, let’s talk about tea. Tea is something that actually showcases how different cultures have adapted a single beverage in various ways, in a way; it showcases how different cultures use the same beverage for remedies, health, socializing etc. but in complete different ways and methods.
So here it is, 7 tea rituals from across the world.
Note: to enjoy this article to the max, don’t forget your cup of tea.
Let’s begin with China, and why not? Considering it’s the biggest producer of tea worldwide. Producing approximately 2.5 million ton of tea per year, that accounts to about 30% of the whole world tea production. It is also said that the Chinese were the first to discover the tea leaf.
One the of most popular traditional Chinese tea ceremonies is known as Gong fu tea, which literally means, “making tea with skill”. The tea ceremony is ideally served to a guest of two to four, and usually the first step of the process is for the guests to smell the tea leaves before the brewing starts. The tea cups are then arranged in circles, and the pouring process is done from a high level in a continuous motion, around the circle until each cup is full. The guests then hold the cup with two hands, and sip slowly through to savor the taste, and once the tea is finished, they continue to hold the cup to relish in the aroma. The type of tea that is normally used in such ceremonies is oolong or pu erh this is because they taste best in such brewing techniques.
Similarly, to China, India is also both a huge producer and consumer of tea. India is especially famous for its Chai Masala blend of teas which traditionally includes black tea leaves mixed with certain spices such as cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, cloves, cardamom, and pepper. Tea Vendors can be found in every street corner, they are called “Chai Wallahs”, they sell their unique tea blends in small sustainable clay cups.
You most probably heard of sweet tea, but have you heard of salt teas? Mongolian tea also known locally as Suutei Tsai, is a type of tea that is served with every meal. The tea is made with green tea, milk, water and salt. Yes, you heard that correctly, salt! This unique type of tea is typically served in small bowls as opposed to cups or glasses. So next time you want to try something exotic, why not add salt to your tea? At your own risk, of course!
From Asia, all the way to North Africa, and specifically to Morocco, where tea is more than just a beverage. Moroccan tea, also known as Touareg tea, is a blend of green tea and mint leaves mixed with a generous serving of sugar. Moroccan tea acts as the core of Moroccan hospitality, as it is always the beverage of choice that is served to house guests. It is usually served three times in one sitting, with each serving the taste varies slightly. The reason for the three servings is explained by this famous Moroccan proverb “The first cup is as gentle as life, the second is as strong as love, the third is as bitter as death”. It’s not advisable to refuse any of the three servings, as it may seem disrespectful towards the hosts.
Next stop: South America, to the land of silver, Argentina. In Argentina, Uruguay and South of Brazil, tea is a completely different story, it is usually made from a special kind of herb known as Yerba Mate. Argentineans consider yerba mate more than just a beverage, it is usually sipped in social events, to connect people together; yerba mate to Argentineans is “a way of life”. It is usually prepared in a small pot from which it’s consumed through a special metal straw called a bombilla. The same pot and the same bombilla is usually passed around the group, and everyone takes a few sips from the same container, to symbolize a social bond between the guests, friends or family members. The drink is known to be very bitter and is usually served without a sweetener. Oh and if you’re wondering if it tastes anything like tea, it doesn’t.
What better than to drink a lovely hot tea beverage in the cold winters of Russia? Russians have a traditional process of preparing tea, which starts with heating water in a metal container called a samovar. The water is mixed with a large quantity of tea and brewed for a prolonged period in a specific container. This creates what is referred to as the zavarka tea concentrate. Wealthier families in Russia tend to have decorated samovars made of fine metals and is traditionally served in glass cups held in metal encasings called podstakannik. These metal holders are decorated with a similar amount of complexity as the samovar. The type of tea that is used for the tea concentrate varies, from fruit-based tisanes to herbal teas, typically made with local plants.
And of course, we can’t have an article about tea without mentioning England. In England, “afternoon tea” has been a way of life since the early 19th century. During this time, two meals a day was the norm, and due to the long gap between the two meals, an afternoon tea was introduced by Anna, the 7th Duchess of Bedford, which then inspired the upper class of society, and soon became the norm across all of England. A typical afternoon tea includes a chosen type of tea served with light sandwiches and savories, which is then followed by scones filled with cream and jam and ending with sweet pastries. Which tea though? Good question! Today, there is over 1,500 different teas that are consumed in England. They all vary in style, taste, and color. And that’s why England is the land of tea.