Coffee is Germany’s favourite drink, more popular than water and even than beer. German adults drink an average of 165 litres of coffee per year, compared to 140 litres of bottled water and a mere 107 litres of beer, according to the most recent figures from the Deutscher Kaffeeverband (German Coffee Association).
Coffee was introduced into Germany in the late 17th century, when coffeehouses began to become popular across Europe. The beverage on offer at the time would have been very different to that served after German coffee lover Melitta Bentz invented the modern drip coffeemaker in 1908. Bentz’s innovative paper filter made a grounds-free, less bitter cup of coffee; variations on her invention remain in use today.
Visitors to Germany will enjoy discovering the long-standing tradition of kaffee und kuchen: a good cup of coffee and a slice of something sweet. Frankfurt isn’t short of venues that serve great coffee and cake, whether you prefer wonderfully old-fashioned décor or an artisanal brew served in relaxed, minimalist surroundings.
Brot Und Seine Freunde
Brot und Seine Freunde may be predominantly a bakery, but its owners appreciate that the best accompaniment to freshly made cake is a great cup of coffee. The right ingredients are essential; in this case, that means beans from traditional Frankfurt roastery Wissmüller, which are handled gently for the smoothest flavour. Don’t overlook the inviting selection of sandwiches and sweet treats such as apple tart and cheesecake made to traditional recipes. The chocolate brownies, served plain, with cream cheese or with almonds, are particularly irresistible.
Brot und Seine Freunde, Kornmarkt 5, 60311 Frankfurt, +49 (0)69 2097 7885
Kaffeemacherei’s simple but charming whitewashed interior provides a relaxing setting in which to enjoy the high-quality coffee and freshly made sandwiches, breakfast platters and cakes on offer. Cheesecakes are a speciality, but there’s also a tempting selection of fruit tarts, traditional crumble cakes and American-style bakes such as carrot cake and lemon meringue pie. The waffles, served with cherry compote and a choice of cream or vanilla ice cream, are a welcome warming treat on a cold day.
Kaffeemacherei, Eckenheimer Landstrasse 70, 60318 Frankfurt, +49 (0)69 4800 8766
The people behind Kaffeewerk Espressionist founded the café to offer what they felt other coffee bars were lacking. With a strong belief in the power and appeal of coffee culture and a respect for coffee production as an art form, they aim to elevate the coffee-drinking experience to a higher level. Each day, there are four different blends, filter coffees and a special to choose from. The baristas, who are experts in everything from the extraction process to latte art, are only too happy to point visitors in the direction of their perfect cup of coffee.
Kaffeewerk Espressionist, Europa-Allee 29, 60327 Frankfurt, +49 (0)69 9131 6787
Family-run business Wacker’s Kaffee is known throughout Frankfurt for its excellent coffee. Founded in 1914, it moved into its current home in Kornmarkt five years later; this is where savvy locals come to buy roasted beans from everywhere from Java to Jamaica to take home, or to grab a quick cup of piping hot freshly brewed coffee to go. For a more leisurely experience, head to the family’s more spacious Café Wacker on Mittelweg, whose interior has been designed to resemble an old-fashioned Viennese-style café.
Café Wacker, Mittelweg 47, 60318 Frankfurt, +49 (0)69 550242; Wacker’s Kaffee, Kornmarkt 9, 60311 Frankfurt, +49 (0)69 287810