Saturday, 1 November 2008

Kiwi coffee nomenclature and the national scone obsession

Cafe culture is big in NZ - BIG. People seem to go out for coffee with alarming frequency, and at the weekend brunch is de rigeour. Apparently this has only been the case for the last 10 years or so. Before that the Kiwis drank tea and stayed at home for the most part.

I have to say that I've yet to have a bad cup of coffee at a cafe here. They do the usual cappuccinos, espressos, lattes etc., but most people go for one of the Kiwi coffees. A 'short black' is an espresso and a 'long black' is a normal black coffee (like an americano). My favourite is a 'flat white', it's kind of a cross between a cappuccino and a latte.

Along with the coffee most Kiwis will consume some type of cake. Most cafes have a choice of savoury or sweet muffins (American style) and savoury or sweet scones. Whether you pronounce scone to rhyme with Joan or gone, you'll get your fill here. Date seems to be the favoured sweet flavour, and cheese the favourite savoury. I've yet to experience a range of scones, but my first impressions are that we make them lighter at home! Mind you, at home we don't microwave them to heat them up and melt the copious amounts of butter that we've spread on them. Am yet to find a proper cream tea, that will be a happy day!

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