England has long been a tea-drinking country, and Brits continue to perfect their personal tea-steeping methods over decades of study and enjoyment. There is a shift, though, in England towards coffee — and it’s largely being shaped by American-style cafes. If you’ve ever ordered an espresso beverage at a cafe, chances are you’ve already had coffee the British way.
Everyone in Great Britain has a particular way they make tea, and they aren’t about to entrust it to just any barista. There are, of course, tea houses throughout England and the rest of the British Isles. These establishments have earned the respect and trust of their patrons over many, many years, though. A new cafe isn’t likely to be entrusted with making tea quickly, especially if the barista calls out to the line rather than the queue.
When it comes to coffee, however, the British are much more relaxed. While they’ve enjoyed the caffeinated beverage for centuries, it hasn’t become a country tradition. Therefore, many Brits are happy to trust a barista whom they don’t know with their cup of coffee.
Sam Ward, of Yorkshire Tea’s parent company Taylors and Harrogate, explains the shift in England’s drinking habits: “We’re moving more towards a cafe culture.” England isn’t moving specifically away from tea and towards coffee, but their moving towards coffee shops. (England went through a similar movement to coffee shops in the 1600s.)
Because Brits are more relaxed about their coffee and getting introduced to specialty coffee from cafes, their tastes in coffee are similar to American’s. They ordered flat whites, cappuccinos and lattes just like many people in the U.S. do — and they also like the flavored syrups and whipped cream.
Thus, if you want to drink coffee like a Brit, head to a cafe and order your favorite coffee beverage. Chances are, there’s someone in England getting the same thing.
At Driftaway Coffee, we regularly post on how people around the world enjoy drinking coffee. To get our next update, make sure you like us on Facebook.