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From Vienna To Italy; The History Of The Cappuccino

Today is International Cappuccino Day.

To mark the occasion we’ve done some digging into the history of one of our favorite, foamy caffeine fixes and asked one of our Coffee Quality Consultants, Luis Alvarez; what is the key to a good cappuccino?

Cappuccinos first became popular in Ireland during what we refer to in the coffee industry as the ‘2nd-wave coffee’. Starbucks is heavily credited with the ‘2nd wave coffee’ as a result of its staggering growth in the early ’90s. What the coffee industry is currently experiencing is the ‘3rd wave coffee’, of which millennials are the driving force. Young people are the largest group of coffee consumers, and they are continuing to grow. Technology and social media have made younger age groups the most discerning when it comes to things such as the environment, sustainability, and Fairtrade. Not only that, but younger coffee consumers typically demand high-quality coffee and a premium experience. They are more aware of and sensitive to origins, roasting profiles and varieties of blends. Cast your minds back to the ’90s and early ’00s before flat whites when cappuccino was the coffee industry buzzword, but how did they come to be?

Where did cappuccinos originate?

The first origins of the Cappuccino trace back as far as the 1770s when they appeared in Viennese coffee houses and were called ‘Kapuziner’. A ‘Kapuziner’ was described as ‘coffee with cream and sugar’, a rather vague description nowadays. The drinks had a brown colour similar to the robes worn by the Italian order of friars, the Capuchin. The hood on their coffee-colored robe is called a cappuccino. However, the drink as we know it today was invented in Italy in the early 1900s, shortly after espresso machines were invented. Following World War II, the cappuccino went through further improvements as a result of espresso machines becoming more readily available, and so the modern cappuccino was born.

The key to a good cappuccino 

We enlisted the help of one of our Coffee Quality Consultants, Luis Alvarez to enlighten us on the key to a good cappuccino. Luis says:

The key to a good cappuccino is greatly textured milk, with that traditional foamy texture which makes a cappucino a creamier experience while compared with a Latte. The cappuccino tends to taste a bit heavier in coffee flavour, and even until this day, it continues to be an unbeatable classic!

To recreate a barista-style cappuccino at home, firstly pour your double espresso, half the remaining space should be filled with hot milk and the other half with wet foam, approx. 3cm.

Happy Cappuccino Day!

Also Read: How To Make A Perfectly Balanced Irish Coffee- Renata’s Blog