Welcome to our newest series. In “Friday Favorites,” our team will share a handful of favorite items. These can range from clothes to beauty products to recipes to books and anything in between.
I love coffee. Adore it. Need it. If there were stronger words for my obsession with this magical elixir, it would still not be enough. I love coffee so much, I have the caffeine molecule tattooed on my forearm. You can say it’s a serious relationship.
I have had coffee in different states and countries; I have had it in varying preparations and forms. But after years of study and dedication, I have a few things that I love more than others. Check out my must-haves and favorites for my coffee addicition!
Before I lived in Italy, I had tasted espresso. I pronounced it like “expresso” and thought it tasted bitter and acrid. But then, I moved to northern Italy and lived in a charming village called Polcenigo. I saw the locals sip espresso in cafes and restaurants, with tiny cups and amaretti cookies on the saucer. I decided to give espresso one last try.
I was given this cup of illy espresso and advised to add a little sugar to cut the taste. One sip…and I was hooked. It is in the making of the drink but also the product, and this is my favorite brand. Hands down, the best espresso in the world. And fortunately for all of us, it can be bought and found outside of Italy. You can order it through Amazon, and there are more illy cafes springing up around the country. Try it – you will not regret it!
Like I said before, I have tried coffee in many different preparations. I will always pick my instant coffee pot because I love convenience but on the mornings that I can take my time, I love to use one of these.
I was first introduced to the Bialetti stovetop coffee maker in Italy. We had just moved there and were settled into an Italian hotel. I was jet lagged and running on fumes – I needed coffee, but everything was closed. I was told there was a coffee maker in our room and after searching the kitchen thoroughly, the hotel owner showed me how to use this contraption.
Maybe it is just the nostalgia for Italy, but this simple machine makes delicious coffee. It is fun to use, and it can be purchased in various sizes. Mine is a Hello Kitty version!
Fun and HUGE coffee mugs
The bigger the mug, the more coffee it can hold. Enough said.
I collect Starbucks mugs from all our travels; there are entire Facebook groups dedicated to the “You Are Here” collections and searches. But I rarely use those mugs. Instead, my favorites are the quirky ones given to me by family and friends. I have a huge Mike Wazowski mug from Disneyworld, a mustache mug, and even a donut mug. This library card mug is on my Christmas list (hint hint) and would fit perfectly into my current rotation.
I have been consciously trying to lessen our household waste for several years. Plastic straws were one of the first things to go, but it was inconvenient to carry metal or silicone straws with me. But now, there are portable kits available. These kits usually include a cleaning brush and holder to keep everything clean and together. It makes it easier to avoid plastic, one straw at a time.
I keep at least a few with me for my cold brew fix in the afternoon. This kit from Anthropologie is great, and there are many others for all budgets.
These cookies are the best coffee accompaniment. There was a cafe in Amberg, Germany that my best friend and I frequented. Every cup of espresso, cappuchino, or macchiato was paired with a pack of these caramel flavored cookies. I will share anything with my best friend and her children, but not these cookies. That’s how good they are.
I do not really know how to describe them. They are crisp and just sweet enough, perfect for dunking in your coffee or eating solo. Regardless, I love them and always think of that cafe and my friend when I eat them. With coffee, of course.