The entire world enjoys a great cup of coffee, whether for a morning dose of caffeine to wake up, an afternoon pick-me-up, or an after-dinner digestion aid (or all three). Although the ingredients and methods behind some of the most well-known international coffee varieties vary, they can be enjoyed similarly. There is the Irish coffee, which consists of whiskey, sugar, and cream. According to Business Insider, Vietnamese coffee contains a generous amount of sweetened condensed milk and is filtered with a French drip, whereas Mexico’s café de olla is brewed with a cinnamon stick and cane sugar and served in a clay mug to enhance the flavors.
The United States, being the melting pot that it is, is familiar with many of these coffee styles and has even claimed a few as its own, such as the classic americano (via Cafe de Lipa). However, there are still elusive coffees, such as the café noisette, that are worth seeking out or preparing at home but are not available at your local coffee shop.
Café noisette is a French specialty. Because it is fundamentally identical to a café macchiato, its appearance and flavor may elicit a sense of familiarity. According to Food & Wine, a noisette is espresso with foamed milk on top. The drink acquires the hue of a hazelnut, or “noisette” in French, but does not taste like the nut. According to travel blogger Jeannine Bergeron, the beverage is a pleasant alternative to the café (or espresso) that the French typically drink in the afternoon (via French Style). The same robust coffee flavor is present, but it is mellowed by a touch of creaminess.
You don’t have to travel across the Atlantic to appreciate a noisette, but kudos if you do! You can make it at home with an espresso machine and a milk frother, or you can ask your local barista if he or she can make one based on the brief description. If it’s a winner in your eyes, don’t stop there; there are numerous coffee varieties and styles from around the world waiting to be discovered.