Cover Turkish Türk Kahvesi | Foolproof Living

Spice up your everyday coffee rituals with these 12 unique coffee drinks from Turkey to Thailand, using everything from cheese to whisky.

One of the best parts about travelling is the opportunity to immerse yourself in the cuisines of other cultures. Recreating food and drinks from other regions invites a similar sense of wonder, a soothing nostalgia of where we’ve been or sparking excitement for where we plan to go next. Integrate your wanderlust into your daily coffee routines and try out these 12 coffee drinks from around the world.

See also: Behind The Bean: The Best Coffee-Producing Regions Around The World

1. Turkey — Türk Kahvesi

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Turkish Türk Kahvesi | Photo Foolproof Living
Above Turkish Türk Kahvesi | Photo: Foolproof Living

If you’re looking for a potent dose of caffeine, look no further than Turkish coffee. Rich and bold, türk kahvesi is made by boiling water, sugar, and remarkably finely ground coffee in a cezve—a specialised copper pot. The coffee is left unfiltered, allowing the grounds to blend into the thick drink, which can be made even more decadent with the addition of milk. 

Follow this beautifully detailed recipe for a powerful türk kahvesi.

Tatler Trivia: the next time you find yourself on the streets of Turkey, keep an eye out for stands and stores that boil türk kahvesi over a bed of hot sand, like this one.

See also: 20 Of The World’s Most Famous Food Markets

2. South Korea — Dalgona Coffee

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South Korea's Dalgona Coffee | Photo Hummingbird High
Above South Korea's Dalgona Coffee | Photo: Hummingbird High

If you were anywhere on the Internet circa 2020, there's a good chance you’ve encountered the viral dalgona coffee. Named after a South Korean honeycomb snack, the sugary, iced drink layers coffee-flavoured whipped cream atop iced milk, producing a beverage so visually stunning it took over social media across platforms like Instagram and TikTok.

Hop onto the trend by following this recipe.

Tatler Tip: already had your share of the dalgona coffee? Try out these dalgona variations instead.

3. Ireland — Irish Coffee

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Irish Coffee | Photo Cookie and Kate
Above Irish Coffee | Photo: Cookie and Kate

Globally beloved for its marriage of booze and beans, Irish coffee is a delectable drink composed of hot brewed coffee, Irish whiskey, sugar, and a generous topping of whipped cream.

Try out this simply delicious recipe, and explore the other variations listed for an even more exciting beverage.

Tatler Tip: for another tried-and-true coffee and liquor pairing, try adding a splash of rum into your black coffees.

See also: Do You Need A Drink? Here Are 4 Rum Cocktails To Make At Home

4. Vietnam — Cà phê đá

Vietnamese coffee or cà phê đá is a deliciously rich and notably sweet beverage easily identified with its distinct layers of thick condensed milk and hot filter coffee (though it is also often enjoyed iced). Once stirred, the syrupy saccharine condensed milk dissolves into the coffee, adding a luscious creaminess that’s sure to entice any sweet tooth. 

Try it out for yourself with this recipe.

Tatler Trivia: while you’re free to use any beans for your own cà phê đá, the brew is traditionally prepared with robusta beans—the coffee species Vietnam is best known for producing.

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Vietnamese Cà phê đá | Photo The Woks Of Life
Above Vietnamese Cà phê đá | Photo: The Woks Of Life

5. Italy — Affogato

For a coffee variation that leans even further into the realm of sweets, whip up the Italian affogato—a no-fuss, all-flavour dessert made of just two base ingredients: espresso and vanilla gelato. However, the ‘drowned’ dessert becomes even more exciting when you consider all the extra toppings you could add, not to mention the numerous combinations of gelato flavours and coffee roasts to experiment with—the possibilities are endless.

Check out this recipe for inspired variants on the classic affogato.

Tatler Tip: got some Frangelico lying around? Add a splash into your affogato, or experiment with other amarettos for an even tastier dessert.

See also: 10 Unique Ice Cream Flavours You Need To Try—From Oyster To Crocodile Egg

Tatler Asia
Italian Affogato | Photo Natalia's Kitchen
Above Italian Affogato | Photo: Natalia's Kitchen

6. Scandinavia—Kaffeost

We’ve explored coffees with milk, cream, and even gelato, but have you tried it with cheese? Enjoyed in the chilliest lands of Scandinavia, the kaffeost is a beverage-slash-dish that serves Finnish leipäjuusto cheese (similar to feta) in a mug of hot coffee. The cheese softens into a spongy texture, soaking up all that coffee goodness for a creamy, nutty bite.

Can’t find leipäjuusto cheese? Follow this recipe and make it yourself at home.

See also: What’s The Best Way To Create Barista-Level Coffee At Home?

7. Hong Kong — Yuanyang

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Hong Kong's Yuanyang | Photo The Woks Of Life
Above Hong Kong's Yuanyang | Photo: The Woks Of Life

Can’t decide if you’re after tea or coffee? Why not have both with a yuanyang, a popular Hong Kong drink that combines both drinks for ultimate flavour. The creamy brew is a staple at afternoon tea spreads, providing a burst of energy that sidesteps the notorious 4pm slump.

Settle in with your favourite book, snack on some egg tarts, and sip on a yuanyang with this recipe for a relaxing weekend.

See also: Tatler Dining’s Asia Food Championships: The Winners

8. Malaysia and Singapore — Kopi

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Photo Kseniia Ilinykh \ Unsplash
Above Photo: Kseniia Ilinykh \ Unsplash

What better way to start your day than with an indulgent, powerful kopi, the popular Malaysian and Singaporean coffee? Often made with robusta beans, you’re guaranteed to be greeted with bold flavours with every cup—but that’s only the beginning. The beans are roasted in a decadent mixture of sugar and butter, margarine, or lard, caramelising the beans to enhance their flavours even more.

Given the specialised roasting process, authentic kopi may be challenging to recreate at home. Why not try your hand at making kaya toast to recreate the kopitiam experience instead?

Tatler Trivia: do you know the difference between a kopi, kopi C, and kopi O? Check out this guide to get acquainted with the many delicious variants of kopi.

9. Greece — Frappé

Not to be confused with the trendy beverage bearing a similar name, the Greek frappé is made by mixing instant coffee, sugar, and water in a jar, cocktail shaker, or similar container, and shaking the mixture vigorously to produce a textured, frothy liquid. Instant coffee is a key ingredient that is necessary to achieve the frappé’s foamy crown.

Fix yourself up a Greek frappé (and get in an arm workout while you’re at it) with this easy recipe.

Tatler Trivia: in Greece, the frappé often comes in three variations, each with varying degrees of sweetness: skétos, métrios, and glykós (from no sugar to most sugar)

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Greek Frappé | Photo Olive & Mango
Above Greek Frappé | Photo: Olive & Mango

10. Mexico - Café de Olla

Mexico’s café de olla literally translates to “coffee from a pot”, referencing the olla de barro (a Mexican clay pot) that the coffee is traditionally brewed in. This coffee drink beams with warm, earthy notes imparted by pilonciollo, a form of unrefined whole cane sugar; a blend of spices such as cinnamon sticks, cloves, and star anise; and of course the olla de barro itself, rendering the pot an essential kitchen tool.

Follow this recipe to try out this warm, spicy brew.

Tatler Tip: for a touch of zing, add some orange peel into the mixture too.

Tatler Asia
Mexican Cafe de Olla | Photo Isabel Eats
Above Mexican Cafe de Olla | Photo: Isabel Eats

11. Portugal — Mazagran

If the thought of citrus and coffee tickles your fancy, try out the refreshing Portuguese mazagran, a sweet iced coffee drink made especially refreshing with a squeeze of lemon. As an added plus, the drink comes together in under five minutes, making it the perfect lazy day beverage.

Find the five-minute recipe here.

See also: How To Brew Coffee at Home: 5 Unique Methods To Try

12. Thailand — Oliang

Tatler Asia
Photo Rinck Content Studio \ Unsplash
Above Photo: Rinck Content Studio \ Unsplash

Thailand’s oliang (or oleang) is a truly unique coffee drink well worth a spot on anyone’s coffee bucket list. Although the additional ingredients may vary, this Thai iced coffee starts with robusta coffee beans and a mixture of various seeds and grains like cardamom, sesame seeds, soybeans, corn, and rice, all roasted and ground together. The beverage is then sweetened with sugar or syrup (and sometimes condensed or regular milk) to balance out the spicy bitter brew, making for a harmonious yet robust coffee.

To make your own oliang from scratch, check out this recipe which uses corn, soybeans, and sesame seeds as its mix-ins.

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