Coffee Lifestyles

Espresso in the U.S.

In the 1990s, espresso's popularity rose in the United States because of coffee chains like Starbucks. However, in areas of South Florida, espresso drinking was already popular among Hispanic communities.

"An espresso is a concentrated coffee beverage brewed by forcing very hot, but not boiling water, under high pressure through coffee that has been ground to a consistency between extremely fine and powder," stated Wikipedia's Web site.

Espresso as a Lifestyle Among Hispanic Americans

Hispanics find coffee, specifically espresso, to be part of their lifestyle. In cities like Miami, Cuban immigrants pass along their coffee-drinking traditions to their children and grandchildren.

University of Florida student Melissa Del Valle, 19, said, "It's definitely part of my lifestyle because I've grown up drinking it since I was probably like 8."

University of Florida student Rebecca De Armas, 20, agreed.

"When I was working at Univision in Miami, I would be drinking like two or three of those little cortadito shots (shots of espresso and evaporated milk) to keep me awake all day. And then on the weekends, I would drink a big thing of café con leche (coffee with milk)," she said.

Jose Delgado, 33, also finds time to drink coffee at work.

"It's a big part of the social scene at work," he said. "At 3 o'clock it's our cafécito time (coffee time), and we all get together around the coffee machine and chat and discuss the day's work and have our coffee," he said.

Quotes from Hispanic Coffee Drinkers

Espresso part of Family Events

"After every meal we'll make a cafetera (pot of coffee), and we split it around and everyone has coffee and then we're done. The meal doesn't end until everyone has coffee."
- Enrique Zamora, 20

"It's always been kind of like tradition or a custom of our family that after dinner or any big meals we drink espresso."
- Claudia Diaz, 20

"It's a lifestyle because it's kind of a relaxing scenario where everyone gets together to have a cup of coffee. It's a reason to get together for nothing."
- Ruben Suarez, 22

Espresso part of Growing Up

"I started drinking coffee as a child with café con leche (coffee and milk). That's regurlar milk with some sugar and just a splash of coffee. It's a café latte. And they (Hispanic families) don't see it as problem to give children coffee just as long as it has milk in it."
- Janet Martinez, 24

"I grew up drinking coffee since I was very young. For breakfast I would always have café con leche in the morning before going to school."
- Claudia Diaz, 20

"When I was 9 or 10 years old my grandmother would give me café con leche (coffee with milk)."
- Jose Delgado, 33

Espresso strong part of Culture

"In Cuba espresso is like the biggest thing. It's always what we drink regardless of the time of day."
- Claudia Diaz, 20

"In my culture you get offered coffee from a very young age and it's not a bad thing."
- Andy Pino, 20