Tuesday, December 10, 2019

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Italian coffee

When my friend Luther visited Milan a few months ago for work-related affairs, he told me the Italians prefer the espresso: richly black coffee filling up about a quarter of a demitasse. They drink it many times a day, during breaks, as a single gulp while standing. They don't linger in coffee shops, which was a shock to him who ordered a cappuccino at lunch time. His choice of beverage also gave the Italians a shock, since cappuccino (or any coffee with milk in the preparation) is usually taken during breakfast. His experience launched a rabid interest in coffee. He talked about the getting the right pressure at the correct temperature to get the perfect flavor out of the coffee beans and so on. I always love talking to Luther and, in preparation for this trip, consulted him on my itinerary.

I remembered him as I had my coffee here. For breakfast, I would have un café (an espresso) and a croissant albicocca.

This was immediately after my arrival, at the Milano Central Station.

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This was in a corner café along Via Marocco where my hotel is. I can't find the photo of my espresso, but I ordered just the same. I found on a table a copy of the day's La Republicca and found a story about people close to home.

Day 2

In the afternoon, tired from all the walking, I had a quiet moment inside a café. I lingered with Elena Ferrante's The Story of the Lost Child with a cup of espresso and a bottle of sparkling water.

Day 2

I stayed for more than an hour, lost in the story, my feet recovering from the strain.

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