Coffee in Croatia

Not for late at night

Not for late at night

One of the first things you learn about the Croatian people is that they really like their coffee. The second thing you learn is why they serve it in such little cups.

I’m sort of an average coffee drinker. I have one or two cups in the morning, or I grab one at a little coffee shop drive-through near my house, or perhaps at a Starbucks.

This was freshly made on the ferry we took to the island of Losinj

This was freshly made on the ferry we took to the island of Losinj

I might have one or two cups at the office, but I usually end up pouring about half of any given cup once it’s cooled off. When I was in Italy a couple months ago with my fellow blogger Jeff, I would order Americano, and be served an espresso with a small pitcher of hot water. The coffee was smooth, strong, and I could dilute it to something I didn’t have to chew.

Coffee shops like this line the streets and plazas in Zagreb

Croatia has that sit-and-sip one cup for a couple of hours (unlike Americans with their giant to-go cups), but the only way I, a big coffee sissy, could handle it was ‘coffee with milk’, although Elaine enjoyed her espresso.

Coffee to go was difficult to locate! And small.

Coffee to go was difficult to locate! And small.

Another thing we found was that most coffee bars are just that: coffee bars. You don’t get breakfast, or rolls, or a pastry. They serve coffee. I didn’t find it quite as smooth as the Italian drinks, but it was good.

This is not unlike their bars. The bars serve drinks. Just drinks. Our first night in Zagreb, we wandered into the bar associated with the archeological museum, a quiet niche with shaded tables, greenery, and various bits of ancient stonework. We ordered the local beer, and asked for a snack menu. Nope, sorry, this is a bar. They serve bar drinks. They do not serve food. Well, except for ice cream.

Your favorite coffee shop under construction? No problem.

Because ice cream is the other passion. We found bars that served only alcohol, and ice cream. Cafes that served only coffee, and ice cream. And of course gelato stands everywhere. (My particular favorite was coconut!)

When driving cross-country, we stopped at McDonalds for a bathroom break. Their coffee was made fresh from espresso. The woman at the counter sternly told me 'no pictures allowed'

When driving cross-country, we stopped at McDonalds for a bathroom break. Their coffee was made fresh from espresso. The woman at the counter sternly told me ‘no pictures allowed’

At the national park concession stands, you could order beer, wine, mixed drinks, many flavors of their local brandy, and a freezer full of drumsticks, good humor bars, and other creamy confections. And coffee. Beer and wine at breakfast, brandy with lunch and dinner, coffee anytime, and always the ice cream.

Coffee shop AND bar. W00t!

Coffee shop AND bar. W00t!

Note the ice cream menu



Categories: Food, Travel

Tags: , , , , , , ,

7 replies

  1. We have a whole different language for coffee here. Important to understand the difference between a short black., a flat white, a cap and long black here!

  2. Interesting observations, and all so true. Coffee culture is very strong in Croatia and when people invite one another for a drink, they rather say “Let’s go for a coffee” implying you can drink whatever you want and not just a coffee.

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