Six of the best coffees around the world

Are you a coffee lover like me? It’s the aroma of freshly ground coffee beans that hits your nose first and then you take a sip of hot, sweet coffee. Ahhh, the day starts to feel better already. But perhaps for you it’s a tiny cup of strong, black expresso, ending the meal perfectly like a full stop at the end of a sentence. Or a frothy cappuccino to eat with a sweet pastry for breakfast like they do in Spain.

6 of the best coffees around the world

However you like it, a great cup of coffee is full of ritual as you watch a skilled barista operate those shiny machines that woosh and hiss, or the buzzy atmosphere of your favourite coffee shop where you meet your friends for a late morning weekend brunch or an afternoon coffee and cake.

Now I’m dreaming about all the coffees I’ve enjoyed on my travels, each coffee experience giving me a doorway into the culture of the place I visited. For more coffee inspiration, take a look at this Coffee infographic that will take you around the world in 31 coffees, but in the meantime let me share with you some of my favourite coffees around the world.

1. Copenhagen – the best coffee in the world?

If ever there was a place where they know how to elevate coffee to an art form it is Copenhagen and Coffee Collective sits among the best of the best.

Coffee Collective in Copenhagen Photo: Heatheronhertravels.com

Coffee Collective in Copenhagen

I visited their original coffee shop in Nørrebro a few years ago, a tiny place with just a few wooden tables outside and a stool inside to perch while your coffee is being expertly made. Their coffee beans are sold all around Copenhagen and they operate on a Direct Trade model, working with farmers in Brazil, Guatamala, Kenya and Panama to pay the best prices for the best quality coffee. If you visit this place you’ll probably be buying your coffee to take away (perhaps picking up a pastry from the Claus Meyer bakery across the road) but if you want to sit and enjoy your coffee in a foodie atmosphere, head for their stand in the Torvehallerne food market halls.

Coffee Cooperative in Copenhagen Photo: Heatheronhertravels.com

Coffee Cooperative in Copenhagen

Torvehallerne is one of my favourite places in Copenhagen, where you can get a fabulous but reasonably priced lunch or sip your coffee with a cake just like your Danish grandmother might have baked. The third branch of Coffee Collective is in Frederiksberg, where the beans are roasted and they do monthly tours and coffee tastings where you can learn how to make a perfect coffee. Definitely a place of pilgrimage for the coffee connoisseur.

Read More: Eat the Neighbourhood in Norrebro, Copenhagen

2. Coffee time is Fika time in Sweden

If you’ve visited Sweden I’m sure you’ll have come across the tradition of ‘fika’, or having a coffee break with friends. This is the occasion to settle down in a cosy cafe where the counters are laden with buns and pastries to relax over a good cup of coffee and a chat. When I visited Gothenburg I discovered that the picturesque old neighbourhood of Haga was the perfect fika spot, since its cobbled streets are lined with cafes, restaurants and artizan shops.

Buns at Cafe Kringlan in Haga, Gothenburg, Sweden Photo: Heatheronhertravels.com

Buns at Cafe Kringlan in Haga, Gothenburg, Sweden

Cafe Husaren on the corner of the main street of Hada Nygatan is reputed to be the original source of the enormous cinamon buns which are a speciality of Gothenburg, although we squeezed into the pretty, traditional Cafe Kringlan with the gold bagel hanging outside. The local’s choice for fika in Gothenburg seems to be Da Matteo and they have several shops including the largest in Magasingaten where they bake the bread and pastries on the premises, so you get the aroma of freshly baked bread thrown in with your coffee.

Read More: Favourite coffee spots in Gothenburg for your coffee fix

3. Salzburg – for coffee and cakes

Perhaps you’ve gathered by now that I have something of a sweet tooth, so heaven for me is a great cup of coffee served in the afternoon with a slice of the local cake. Of course Austria makes a speciality of this Kaffee und Kuchen ritual and where better than Salzburg, the glorious homeland of Mozart and the Sound of Music to enjoy it?

Steinterrasse in Salzburg Photo: Heatheronhertravels.com

Steinterrasse in Salzburg

When it comes to cake to accompany your afternoon coffee, you’ll likely be wavering between the Apfelstrudel (soft bites of apple wrapped in crisp layers of pastry) and the Sacher Torte (rich, dense chocolate cake laced with apricot jam). The traditional choice would probably be to head for Hotel Sacher which overlooks the river but we enjoyed our kaffee und kuchen on the rooftop terrace of the Hotel Stein with a fabulous view of the fortress, which is highly recommended in good weather. 

Read more: Bratwurst and Sacher Torte – or what we ate in Salzburg

4. A chilled frappe on the beach in Greece

Coffee can be a cool drink in more ways than one, as I discovered on my annual trips to Greece to visit my sister who lives on the Greek Island of Zakynthos. Traditionally the Greeks drink their coffee like the Turks, strong and sweet in a tiny cup together with those ultra-sweet pastries that drip with syrup. This is what you’d serve to friends who come visiting in the afternoon.

Frappuccino on Ionian beach, Zakynthos, Greece Photo: Heatheronhertravels.com

Frappuccino on Ionian beach, Zakynthos, Greece

But the trendy thing to drink in summer is a chilled Frappé – where an expresso is poured over ice with creamy milk to make a coffee that’s sipped through a straw from a long glass. When you’re lying on your sunbed or sitting in a trendy Greek beach bar, be sure to order a “Freddo” coffee, which comes in different Italian styles such as a Freddo cappuccino, Freddo Expresso or a Freddoccino (iced mocha coffee with chocolate). 

Read More: Sunday morning Greek coffee and Glika in Zakynthos

5. Ruddesheimer coffee in Germany – coffee with a creamy kick

If you fancy your coffee with something a little stronger, we found the perfect alternative coffee on our Rhine River Cruise stop at the pretty town of Rudesheim. Wandering down the cobbled street of the Drosselgasse with its wine shops and taverns we stopped at Rudesheimer Schloss to try the local speciality of Rudesheimer coffee.

Rudesheimer coffee Photo: Heatheronhertravels.com

Rudesheimer coffee

This coffee spiked with brandy is the German equivalent of Irish Coffee and started in the 1920s when the Alspach brandy company invented a brandy chocolate so that ladies could enjoy a secret tipple, at a time when it was considered unseemly for women to drink in public. One good thing lead to another and in the 1950s the Rudesheimer coffee was born, a warming mixture of sweet coffee with a good helping of Asbach brandy, topped with sweet, whipped vanilla cream and sprinkled with grated chocolate. These days the Rudesheimer coffee is served in all the local coffee shops and you can bring back small bottles of the Alspach brandy if you want to try it at home.

Read More: How to make a Rudesheimer coffee – video

6. A hot chocolate alternative to coffee in Gothenburg

If you’re not a coffee drinker, you’ll be pleased to know that in Gothenburg we found an excellent alternative at Cafe Kanold that specialises in velvety hot chocolate. Staying cosy from the chilly wind and weather, we sat on the cushioned banquette with pretty floral cushions and enjoyed a warming hot chocolate – served with chili flakes on top for an extra kick.

Cafe Kanold in Gothenburg, Sweden Photo: Heatheronhertravels.com

Cafe Kanold in Gothenburg, Sweden

While there is also a counter of hand-made Kanold chocolates in the cafe, you’ll want to visit the main Kanold chocolate shop close by on Södra Larmgatan at the end of Viktoriapassagen. It’s a cross between an old fashioned candy store and a boutique chocolatier where you can buy the Kanold speciality, a soft chocolate truffle centre topped with sea salt, which has now become known as the “Gothenburg Truffle”. Of course if you insist of coffee at Cafe Kanold, I’m sure they serve that too!

Read More: Chocolate with sea salt – a taste of West Sweden

Check out this Coffee Infographic

If you want to fuel your coffee fascination even more, take a look at this Coffee infographic from  Cheapflights that will take you around the world in 31 coffees. Here are a few cool coffee facts that I discovered;

  • In Italy you only drink milky coffee in the morning and NEVER after a meal – the cappuccino in the afternoon is only for tourists!
  • Breakfast in Spain normally consists of a cup of coffee with a sweet pastry or churros
  • In Senegal coffee is served with cloves and guinea pepper
  • In 2001 Brazil issued a coffee scented postage stamp
  • Seatle has 10 times more coffee store per head than the rest of the USA
Around the world in 31 Coffees Photo: Cheapflights.com

Around the world in 31 Coffees – infographic from Cheapflights

Now, please excuse me as I’m off to find the perfect coffee to have with my weekend brunch in Bristol

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6 of the best coffees around the world

This article is originally published at Heatheronhertravels.com – Read the original article here

This article is written in association with Cheapflights

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Let the sights of Europe come to you on a River Cruise

Each year millions of visitors flock to Europe to experience its beauty and culture. Planes, trains and automobiles may be the traditional methods of reaching famous locations but can be stressful and tiring. River cruise tours in Europe offer an opportunity to relax in comfort and luxury, while the continent’s greatest sights and experiences are brought to you. From Amsterdam, cruises set sail for Germany – treating passengers to luxury cabins, stylish restaurants and spacious sun decks.

Cologne Cathedral and the river Rhine at night Photo: in_focus on Flickr

Cologne Cathedral and the river Rhine at night

The Rhine, Main and Danube river cruise stops first in Cologne, where the twin spires of the city’s Gothic cathedral dominate a scenic skyline. In the afternoon, guided walking tours take passengers out into the city and around its most interesting and historic locations. The city is host to a wealth of eye-catching architecture, including medieval churches and the Colonius tower – the tallest structure in the city.

The leisurely trip through Germany includes stops at the historic Koblenz and the sleepy, idyllic town of Miltenberg. Passing onto the Danube, the towers of Nuremburg’s 11th century castle rise into view and the cruise stops for guided tours of the city’s old town and popular market districts. Once regarded as the unofficial capital of the Holy Roman Empire, there’s a lot to see and do in Nuremburg, including cultural attractions like Museum of Modern Art and the Justice Palace. Don’t forget to find time to sample some of the city’s famous Nurnberger Bratwurst!

A view of Miltenberg from your river cruise Photo: Steve Masiello on Flickr

A view of Miltenberg from your river cruise

Passing into Austria, the next stop is Passau from where you might like to take a coach trip to Salzburg, birthplace of Mozart and home to spectacular Alpine views and cosy mountain settlements. Further into Austria, stops include a Benedictine abbey and Durnstein, one of Austria’s finest wine producing villages. After a stay in the stylish Vienna, it’s on to Slovakia and the capital, Bratislava, in the Carpathian mountains.

A view of Salzburg, Austria Photo: Heatheronhertravels.com

A view of Salzburg, Austria

Bratislava is a melting pot of central European culture – dating back 2000 years to early Celtic civilisation. Rich royal heritage is all over the city – in elaborate baroque palaces and the imposing Bratislava Castle. There’s a modern side to Bratislava and you’ll see striking, innovative buildings, like the diamond-shaped Kamzik Tower and the inverted-pyramid of the Slovak radio headquarters, scattered across the skyline.

View of the Chain bridge in Budapest Photo:Heatheronhertravels.com

View of the Chain bridge in Budapest

Ending in Budapest, the river cruise chance to experience some of Europe’s most famous destinations at a pace which lets you savour their beauty free from the stress and complications of the airport and the motorway!

This article was brought to you by Titan Travel,  where you can book your River Cruise holiday and discover the sights of Europe in luxury and comfort.

More good things to explore in Europe

Lost in the Hohensalzburg Fortress in Salzburg
Passion, Music and drama in Oberammergau
The latest dirndl fashions from Bavaria in Munich

Photo credits: Cologne Cathedral and the river Rhine at night by in__focus , Miltenberg by Steve Masiello

This article is originally published at Heatheronhertravels.com – Read more travel articles at Travel Blog Home

You’ll also find our sister blog with tips on how to build a successful travel blog at My Blogging Journey

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May Day at The White Horse Inn on Lake Wolfgang, Austria – video

“You know the water in the lake is drinking quality?” I was told by my new friend Wolfgang, as he pressed me to drink another glass of sparkling Sekt, the Austrian version of Champagne. By this time I was starting to feel a bit tiddly, but it certainly tasted better than a glass of lake water, however pure that might be.

Meeting Wolfgang and Carolin in St Wolfgang Photo: Heatheronhertravels.com

Weeting Wolfgang and Carolin in St Wolfgang, Austria

We’d arrived at the pretty lakeside town of St Wolfgang, an hour from Salzburg in the heart of the Salzkammergut region, to find the May Day festival in full swing.The cobbled streets with pretty painted houses were filled with wooden kiosks, where the locals were gathering to while away the afternoon awash with beer, wine and the odd Weiner Schnitzel. By the time we’d settled into our lakeside hotel, the White Horse Inn it was well into the afternoon and the crowds were starting to thin. We got chatting to local hotelier Wolfgang and his dirndl clad wife, Carolin who were running a beer stand to promote their hotel just around the lake shore. Before we knew it, we too were awash with the May Day spirit and swaying along to the yodelling trio playing nearby.

I hope you enjoy the video below about our stay at the White Horse Inn and Lake Wolfgang

If you can’t see the video above, view it on my blog here

If you thought that Wolfgang (as in Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart) was an unusual name, you’d be wrong hereabouts. As my new friend told me, he’d been named for St Wolfgang who founded a church here in the 1st century that became the hot destination for pilgrims from all over Europe in the Middle Ages – he was, as Wolfgang joked, the Patron Saint of Tourism in this part of Austria.The story goes that St Wolfgang threw an axe from where he stood and where it landed he built the church, even tricking the Devil himself to help with the building work.

Hotel Weisse Rössl at St Wolfgang in Austria Photo: Heatheronhertravels.com

Our bedroom at Hotel Weisse Rössl at St Wolfgang in Austria

Fuelled with May Day spirit, we returned to our room at Hotel Weisses Rössl or The White Horse Inn, a family run Austrian Inn that has over the years swallowed up the neighbouring buildings and transformed itself into a luxury spa hotel. We threw open the doors onto the balcony overlooking the lake, where I could have sat all day and watched the ferries criss-crossing the sparkling water.

Lake Wolfgang is ringed by mountains with a number of pretty lakeside towns such as St Wolfgang, Strobl and St Gilgen on the shore – and there’s plenty to do at all times of year from swimming and hiking in the summer to ski-ing and Christmas markets in the winter. From the lake shore you can take one of those ferries across the lake or chug up to the top of the mountain on the Schafburgbahn, a miniature steam train that was built in 1893 to take those early tourists up to the top for some breathtaking views and clear Alpine air.

Hotel Weisse Rössl at St Wolfgang in Austria Photo: Heatheronhertravels.com

View of the lake from Hotel Weisse Rössl at St Wolfgang in Austria

The White Horse Inn is also well known as the setting for a famous comic opera of the same name that was first performed in Berlin the 1930s and later made into several film versions – think Gilbert and Sullivan but in German. It’s a charming comedy of errors in which the Head Waiter of the White Horse Inn is in love with the owner, but her heart is set on one of her regular guests. When the object of her attention arrives, he promptly falls in love with someone else, but it all ends happily with everyone marrying the right person.

Hotel Weisse Rössl at St Wolfgang in Austria Photo: Heatheronhertravels.com

Hotel Weisse Rössl at St Wolfgang in Austria

Hotel Weisse Rössl at St Wolfgang in Austria Photo: Heatheronhertravels.com

Hotel Weisse Rössl at St Wolfgang in Austria

The setting of The White Horse Inn right beside the lake is just perfect and there’s a spa with saunas, treatments and indoor pool as well as a wooden sun deck with an outdoor pool set in the lake. In May the sun was warm but the water a little cool for me, so I watched my husband and son playing a lovely game in which they swam a few lengths in the outdoor pool (pleasantly fresh) then jumped into the lake itself (freeeezing) to swim a few strokes before hopping out and into the outdoor jacuzzi (blissfully warm).

St Wolfgang in Austria Photo: Heatheronhertravels.com

St Wolfgang in Austria

St Wolfgang in Austria Photo: Heatheronhertravels.com

St Wolfgang in Austria

We also had fun borrowing the hotel’s pedalos to explore the lake shore near the hotel, peering up from the lake at St Wolfgang’s church tower and dodging the ducks. On our final morning we took the Shafburgbahn train up the mountain for a coffee with a stunning view – if we’d had more time, I’d have loved to do some hiking in the mountains around the lake. I’m normally happy to enjoy a place and move on but if you asked me to go back to Wolfgangsee and the White Horse Inn, I’d be there like a shot!

More stories from Salzburg and Wolfgangsee

Riding the steam train – on the Schafburgbahn at St Wolfgang – video
Podcast – Salzburg and Lake Wolfgang in Austria
Bratwurst and Sacher Torte – or what we ate in Salzburg, Austria

 If you’re thinking of visiting (trust me, it’s wonderful at any time of year)

Website for Wolfgangsee or Lake Wolfgang
Hotel Weisses Rössl or The White Horse Inn – Website – find them on Facebook
My new friend Wolfgang Linsmayer’s hotel at Gasthof Bürglstein
For more information about Holidays in Austria visit the Austrian Tourism Website and follow them on Twitter @Austria_UK
Check out this great video about Salzburg, Innsbruck and Graz as well as the other videos about Holidays in Austria

My thanks to the Austria National Tourism Office UK for hosting our trip to Salzburg and Wolfgangsee

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heatheronhertravels' Austria - St Wolfgang and Wolfgangsee photoset heatheronhertravels’ Austria – St Wolfgang and Wolfgangsee photoset


This article is originally published at Heatheronhertravels.com – Read more travel articles at Travel Blog Home

You’ll also find our sister blog with tips on how to build a successful travel blog at My Blogging Journey

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