I hope, like me, that since my last post you’ve been enjoying your daily cups of coffee whilst taking in where it originated from, all the way back to the 15th century.
Now, I want to take you on a journey through South East Asia, where lies surreal turquoise waters, giant sized sea turtles, colorful corals, exciting cultures, and of course – seeing as this is a blog about coffee – you know where this is going…
Before I get to the caffeine mixed with egg yolk (yes!), I’ll give you a brief look into South East Asia. I went traveling for 5 months around SEA, starting in Sri Lanka-Thailand-Vietnam-Hong Kong-Japan-Philippines-Indonesia- ending in Australia. It was a surreal experience, filled with daily snorkeling alongside massive parrot fish and endless coral reefs, testing out all the beaches, island tours, and of course, cheap booze and boogies. But, each of these countries inhabits wonderful culture, including bringing their own twang to the everyday cup of coffee. Side note: If you want some tips on what to do and see in SEA, just get in touch, I’m happy to help, any excuse to rave about my trip!
Think names like Java and Sumatra, sound familiar?
I’ll start with Sri Lanka. I don’t think coffee has quite taken off here yet, but an average brew still has some coffee grinds in the cup, and boy, do they like it strong. With the heat, I craved my iced coffees (I can give up my bed and shower to travel the world, but a girl needs her coffee!), so I resorted to the Nescafe iced latte cartons. Anyone looking for a move and a business idea: coffee in Sri Lanka. Don’t let this make me sound unappreciative of this beautiful country, it was my second favorite out of them all, and it’s more enjoyable to sip on their tea while admiring the endless lime green tea plantations.
Japan, it’s all about the tea, and it’s good tea, I wouldn’t insult them by asking for a coffee if I were you.
Mmm egg coffee… did I hear that correctly?
The Vietnamese have an unusual take on the standard coffee. Here, I experienced coffee like never before. It is more espresso style (Vietnamese coffee), with their own tweak on it by putting egg yolk (yes, egg!) as the milky froth substitute. This drink, called Ca phe trúng or egg coffee, sounds strange, but is a delicious meringue-like egg white foam. We were in Hanoi on a walking tour, and our guide wanted to take us to his favorite cafe for coffee, and he kept putting some word before “coffee” and at the time I remember thinking “is he saying egg-coffee??” and that I must just not be understanding correctly. But there you have it, next thing there was a tray with 20 mini frothy coffees – containing egg. In general across Vietnam, rather than milk, they serve it with condensed milk, and if you ask for milk, you get condensed. It’s like in Canada how some people add cream instead of ordinary milk; it’s adds a thickness, but this also adds a sweetness. I personally don’t love condensed milk, but with just a little bit, it was quite nice. Side note: They are obsessed with condensed milk.
Travel, Eat, Drink, Snorkel, Sunbathe, Hike, Motorbike, Dance, Taste… Experience, South East Asia.
Oh Indonesia, being the fourth largest producer of coffee in the world, I’m sure you know about this magical place. Think names like Java and Sumatra, sound familiar? Though, I didn’t get to these two towns, I got to experience the smooth, earthy aromas of the full-bodied, rich Indonesian coffee. If I had longer, I would have been traveling through the country on coffee adventures one after the other. But that’s what second chances are for.
As for Australia, we’re back to our Starbucks. But like Ireland and Canada (the two places I have lived), coffee is on a huge high there, with small independent brands opening shop and taking off, opting for the more artisan, quirky feel than a big brand chain, and I being a lover of coffee, love to support these pop-ups and experience coffee’s culture growth. Mind you, I was on the wine tasting here too. Priorities.
Have a great weekend everyone, and with the mermaid makeup, bunny ears and white sheets, I’ll wish you all a Happy Halloween, and here is a great, simple, home recipe for DIY pumpkin spice latte by iowagirleats.com to get you in the mood. Wrap up, sip up, and get a sugar high on candy.
I better get back to work, good thing it’s not Xmas or I’d be on the naughty list.