Podcast Episode 4: Caffè

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Show notes

In this episode, I talk about the Italian love affair with caffè, how it came into Italy and how it came to be the iconic drink, heavily associated with the bel paese, that it is today.

If you have any questions about this episode, please write them in the comments below and I will answer them as soon as possible. As always, if you enjoyed the episode, please share it with someone else you think might enjoy it. If you have a moment, please rate and/or write a review for this episode on iTunes. This will help other people to find and enjoy the podcast. Thank you so much for your continued support of Luca’s Italy and for all the wonderful feedback I’ve received so far. Grazie mille!

The episode includes:

  • The 18th century Venetian coffee house craze.
  • The foundation of Venice’s Caffè Florian
  • Carlo Goldoni’s play La bottega di caffè (1750)
  • How coffee entered Italy through Venice
  • How coffee spread from Italy to Europe
  • How coffee became synonymous with Naples
  • The invention of the cuccumella (caffettiera napoletana)
  • The invention of Bialetti’s Moka.
  • The invention of espresso coffee
  • How coffee is consumed in Italy today
  • The rules for making and drinking espresso and cappuccino
  • How I drink coffee


My article about drinking espresso in a cup or glass.

Video of making coffee in a cuccumella.

How to make a perfect moka coffee

Bar Mexico, Naples: home of Passalacqua my favourite coffee.

6 thoughts on “Podcast Episode 4: Caffè”

  1. Glenn Todd Martin

    Always a pleasure to hear Luca’s podcast. This one was extremely informative. So many of us ‘thrive’ daily on this little thimble full of liquid sunshine, but seldom give a thought to the origins of it in Italy, let alone the famous cafe and bar that many of us have visited. Thank you for you attention to detail and helping us once again to understanding an important part of Italian history!! Ciao

    1. I’m really glad you enjoyed it Glenn. There are so many things we take for granted but rarely think about where they come from. I’m really looking forward to continuing to tell the story of Italian cuisine through this podcast. Thanks!

  2. Ciao Luca. Great podcast! What are your views on espresso with tonic water and ice? I came across it in Dubrovnik so relatively close to Italy/Italian culture. I enjoyed it to be honest although I suspect it’s hipster and akin to putting pineapple on pizza! Vergogna o no?

    1. Ah yes, there’s a very big connection. Dubrovnik was for many years under Roman and then Venetian rule. Well, maybe I’m going to surprise you and say that I’d like to try that. It sounds very similar to a soft drink known as Brasilena, which is made from espresso, sugar, and carbonated water that is produced in Calabria in southern Italy and only available in the regions of Calabria, Puglia, Campania, and Sicily. I adore it and have a Calabrian friend who buys me some every time he goes home. Here’s a link to the drink’s website. https://brasilena.net/

  3. Roberto Fabiani

    Another informative and entertaining piece of Italian culinary history! Great in depth knowledge of the subject and well told . Thank you Luca!

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