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Coffee Vocab List –
Essential Italian Vocabulary

Italy has quite a unique coffee culture. A coffee usually means an espresso, and it is seen to be perfect after a big meal; the coffee wakes you up, but since it's espresso, you can drink it on a full stomach.

Coffee is also consumed during the day, but don't expect Starbucks or free Wi-Fi (there are currently no Starbucks coffee shops in Italy). Most coffees will be consumed on the spot, either at the counter or at a table, just as a break before heading back to work.

Please also bear in mind that Cappuccinos are considered breakfast drinks and ordering them after 10 am is considered somewhat odd, although this is starting to change in bigger cities.

In this vocab list, you will find some of the basic words and phrases you'll need to get your caffeine buzz on when traveling in Italy.

Coffee Vocab List
Phrase in Italian Phrase in English Pronunciation
Un caffè A coffee (usually espresso) Oon cahf-feh
Caffè macchiato Espresso with a drop of milk Cahffeh ma-kee-ah-toh
Caffè ristretto Half a shot of espresso Caf-feh ree-streh-toh
Caffè corretto Espresso with a shot of liquor Cahf-feh coh-rreh-ttoh
Caffè lungo (americano) A filtered coffee (American style) Cahf-feh loon-goh
Cappuccino Cappuccino Cahp-puh-ccee-noh
Caffe latte Hot milk with coffee Cahf-feh laht-teh
Caffè Hag Decaf coffee Cahf-feh Hahg
Caffè doppio Double espresso Cahf-feh dohpp-yoh
Schiuma Foam Skee-oomah
Panna Cream Pahn-nah
Cioccolata calda Hot chocolate Choc-coh-lah-tah cah-ldah
Vorrei.. I would like Vohr-ray
Mi scusi/Scusa Excuse me (Formal/Informal) Mee scuh-see/Scuh-sah
Un caffè per favore Coffee please (ordering coffee) Oon cahf-feh pehr-fah-voh-reh
Cameriere! Waiter! Cah-meh-rieh-reh
La tazza The cup Lah tah-tsah
Caldo Hot Cahl-doh
Freddo Cold Frehd-doh
Brioche Croissant Bree-osh
Marmellata Jelly Mahr-meh-laht-tah
Crema Cream (in a pastry) Creh-mah
Tea Teh
Zucchero Sugar Zoo-keh-roh
Dietor Saccharin Dee-eh-tohr
Quanto costa.. How much is.. Quah-ntoh coh-stah
Un tovagliolo A napkin Oon toh-vah-leeoh-loh
Cucchiaio Spoon Cuh-kiah-yoh
Grazie Thank you Grah-zee-eh
Caffetteria Coffee shop Cahf-feh-tehree-ah

Slang/Commonly Used Expressions:

  Expression in Italian Expression in English Pronunciation
Scotta! It burns! Scoht-tah
E' troppo freddo! It's too cold! Eh trohp-poh frehd-doh
Sa di fogna! It tastes like sewage! (typical insult for a bad coffee) Sah dee Foh-nee-ah
Pago io I'll pay Pah-goh ee-oh

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