What is considered the perfect cappuccino in your culture?


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Feb 22, 2007
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Hello Espresso Fans,

I am a student researching the cultural differences in coffee recipe consumption habits. My research focuses on the differences in preparation of milk based espresso recipes (cappuccino, latte macchiato, etc).

The espresso Culture stems from Italy and recently the National Institute for Italian Espresso (www.espressoitaliano.org) certified what it considers the classic cappuccino. According to them there is only one way a true cappuccino should be composed. (see: http://www.guardian.co.uk/italy/story/0 ... 14,00.html). So the authentic Italian way is clear cut.

However, my theory is that in different parts of the world consumers prefer different types of milk-based espresso beverages due to differences in tastes, beliefs, habits, etc. Accordingly the ways these beverages are prepared may differ as well.

After spending hours surfing from site to site, I’ve noticed that there is a lot of discussion/debate concerning the perfect way to prepare a cappuccino. I have come across several guides, procedures and tips, yet it is not exactly clear where they stem from.

The WBC has an own definition of a cappuccino (WBC Rules and Regulations 2007):
a. A Cappuccino is a beverage of ratios, producing a harmonious balance of one (1) single shot of espresso, steamed milk and frothed milk.
b. A traditional cappuccino is a 5 to 6 ounce / 150 to 180 ml beverage.
c. A cappuccino should be served in a 5 to 6-ounce / 150 to 180 ml cup with a handle.
d. Any additional toppings, spices or powdered flavourings are not allowed.

Despite the espresso/cappuccino culture stems from Italy not a single Italian barista finished in the top 3 since the 1st WBC in 2000!

Since this forum has many international visitors I would like to ask your opinion. In your country/culture, what are the perfect “milk based recipes”: Cappuccino, Latte Macchiato, etc…?

Please help me by answering the following questions:

1) Other than the Cappuccino and the Latte Macchiato, what other popular recipes are commonly consumed in your country?

2) How are they prepared? To answer this question please include the following:

-what types of milk are available in your country (fresh, pasteurized, sterilized, low fat, full fat, etc.)
-what type of milk would you use for what recipe and why
-temperature of milk used (before and after preparation)
-density/quality of the moose
-characterisation of the moose: what terms are used for description/analysis..

-what type of coffee should be used for what type of recipe

Other Ingredient(s)
-Added Flavouring, cream, syrup…etc

Tools / equipment
-What equipment should be used (steamer, frother, wisk, other, specific brands?)

Recipe/ Procedure / sequence
-How are the ingredients used to prepare the recipe?
-In what sequence etc.
-What special techniques are required

-How are they served? (type of cup/glass, with/without toppings, biscuit, etc.)

I thank you very much for your time and cooperation and I hope that this will stimulate some interesting discussions and result in some significant findings.

Sincerely yours,