Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Taboo after dinner?

A day without at least two cappuccinos while traveling out the country, for me, is a day without sunshine! I do order the short cups~still counting the calories. Look at how rich and creamy this cup is! This is a meal in itself!! Let me get to the point .....having a cappuccino after dinner was/is a major violation I have experienced for a long time when traveling to Italy. I considered this my dessert at times until someone close to me pointed out very quietly that drinking this type of coffee was never done after dinner. My heart shattered! This is incredulous! I was from Washington where Starbucks was created and had any selection of coffee drinks at any time of the day. So for a few days, I started to take notice and pay more attention to when people were ordering or drinking cappuccinos and really, I never observed anyone caught in the act after dinner or even late in the day-except, the tourist, like me. Whatever is the logic behind this taboo? To that question my friend just replied," it's just not what we do here in Italy." As an American visitor to foreign places, I make an extra effort to comply and conform and not make up my own rules as I go. I never wear tennis shoes and always have a scarf around my neck. I certainly do not wish to challenge the logic behind having a cappuccino after dinner, but I would like to know what it is! If you know, please do share!

6 comments:

K and S said...

interesting!

Simona said...

This post may be helpful. In Italy, cappuccino is made with whole milk. I must confess that I occasionally drink a cappuccino in the early afternoon.

Rowena said...

I've been living here for 7.5 years and boy what memories this stirs up. We were at my husband's friends for lunch and after it was over, coffee (espresso) was offered. I asked for a cappuccino and they couldn't make it, so I then asked for milk and the hostess replied, "You're going to drink milk after lunch???!" At that time I didn't know if it was just the way things were done or because it was wrong to have milk anything after drinking copious amounts of wine. Now I know better (as my husband clued me in later), but he tells me anyway to just do what I like!

My Carolina Kitchen said...

The only thing I know is that in France coffee is served alone - never with dessert. I have no idea about Italy. I'm with you. I try very hard not to look or act like a tourist.

Maybe it has something to do with the milk as Rowena suggested. Perhaps milk is associated with children - who knows. When in Rome....
Sam

Mimi from French Kitchen said...

I try very hard not to violate local customs when I travel, too. The only thing that would keep me from an afternoon coffee is thinking that it would keep me from falling asleep.

Joie de Vivre said...

It's easy - why ruin a beautiful meal with a heavy, dairy drink. Imagine ordering a milk shake after Thanksgiving dinner. Not too appealing. Hope this helps.

Diane
www.paristoprovence.ca