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Sunday, 20 October 2013

Café au Lait

After the Turks were seen off in the Siege of Vienna in 1683, a Polish Army Officer, Franz Kolschitzky, retained the 500 sacks of coffee beans left by the fleeing Turkish army. He had previously lived in Turkey and, being the only person there who knew how to use it, claimed the coffee for himself.

The following year, Kolschitzky opened central Europe's first coffeehouse in Vienna with the stock of coffee beans. He established the habit of refining the brew by filtering out the grounds, then heating up some milk, whisking it to create a foaming liquid before sweetening it with honey and adding a dash of cream. This drink became known as café au lait.

Milk as an additive to coffee became popular in the 1680's, when a French physician recommended that cafe au lait be used for medicinal purposes.

In Spain, it is common to pour chocolate milk or café au lait on cereal for breakfast.

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