International Coffee Day. Anyone for saunakahvi?

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01 Oct

Today is International coffee day and it might come as a surprising fact to some that Finnish people register as the largest coffee consumers worldwide according to the International Coffee Organization (ICO). Perhaps due to long, dark days, and the need for regular caffeine kicks, Finns get through 12 kilograms (26.45 pounds) per person each year. They've specific words for different types of coffee situations, for example aamukahvi (morning coffee), iltakahvi (evening coffee) and of course saunakahvi (sauna coffee). Decaf is extremely rare and coffee is drunk at every meal. In fact, it’s not uncommon for people to drink up to eight cups a day and there’s a national labour agreement stating that people must take two 15-minute coffee breaks a day.

It’s thought Coffee could have been a way of Finland associating itself more the West rather than mainly tea-drinking Russia after independence in 1917 and Finns tend to like their coffee lightly roasted. Tap water quality in the country is first class and extremely soft meaning they can make their filter coffee lighter and still brew it to taste fantastic. You don’t see any of the large global coffee chains popular throughout most of the rest of Europe. However, there are certainly lots of independent cafés and Finnish brands.