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Coffee in Germany and Austria

I was enjoying a great topic on coffee and saw at the end that the discussion had been discontinued.

I am going to Munich, Salzburg and Vienna.

After my morning run I enjoy my coffee.

If I want a bit of cream and a bit of skim milk and a sugar free flavoring, what do I ask for?

Thank you!,

Posted by
848 posts

You will generally find whole milk more common than cream or skim. Unless you go to Starbucks, flavorings aren't really a thing, especially in Vienna, which is proud of its coffee culture.

Posted by
52 posts

Thank you, that’s what I was wondering. I definitely want to experience local flavor, and not the chains we have here.

Posted by
3931 posts

Good for you, daisydrum. I know some people love Starbucks, and I also know some people go for the wifi and bathrooms, so I'm not putting them down. But I like that you're planning to sample the local coffee culture.

Posted by
175 posts

We found coffee to be wonderful in Germany and Austria. Usually I’m a ‘cream in my coffee’ gal but there, black coffee tasted so good I didn’t want anything in it!

Posted by
20569 posts

If you mix cream and skim milk are you not getting close to whole milk. I know some ask for half and half but I don't think that is common in Europe. Our first trip to Italy in '92 ruined our taste for Folger's ground coffee and --- who was it??? -- "Good till the last drop."

PS -- IMO, by the time you added cream. skim milk, sugar free flavoring, you are not drinking coffee but a flavored beverage.

Posted by
52 posts

Frank, I knew when I posed this question I was opening myself up for that comment 😀.

Folks, what do I say then, to get coffee with milk ?

I want to have it typed in my phone so I do not end up with something else?
Thank you!

Posted by
23259 posts

I just say "ein kaffee mit heißem milch bitte". Works for me. In Austria you can be more precise with the colour you want.

You could have cold milk if you prefer. I don't.

Or just ein kaffe bitte and they will ask if you want milk.

Or usually at breakfast there will be a thermos of coffee on the table and a jug of milk or kaffeesahne on the table. As you sit down you will be asked if you want coffee or tea. Or you go up to the machine and push the button yourself to choose between half a dozen choices.

Posted by
2275 posts

I don’t speak German, but would get a melange in Austria. Coffee with milk. Also, a lot of coffee shops, not usually traditional cafes but modern places, local not Starbucks, list cappuccino, latte and other international types of coffee. I don’t know about flavors or milk choices.

Posted by
1378 posts

If I want a bit of cream and a bit of skim milk and a sugar free
flavoring, what do I ask for?

The easy part.
sugar free flavoring = "Zuckerfreies (Geschmacks-)aroma", e.g. "Zuckerfreies Vanille-Aroma" for vanilla.

More complicated.
skim milk = "entrahmte Milch" or "Magermilch" (0.1 - 0.5% fat) but normally you mean "leichte Milch" or "Milch mit 1.5% Fettanteil"?

cream = "Sahne" or do you mean condensed milk = "Kondensmilch"?

Info: there is really no meaning to consume such fat-reduced milk until you continue eating cheese, yoghurt (instead of skyr) and meat.

The complete opposite of your coffee is a Cortado.

--

Edited after question of OP how to order a hot coffee with hot skim milk (0.1 - 0.5 % fat).

"Einen Kaffee mit heißer Magermilch, bitte." = "A coffee with hot skim milk please."

"Einen Kaffee mit heißer Magermilch und zuckerfreiem Vanille-Aroma, bitte." = "A coffee with hot skim milk and sugar-free vanilla flavor please."

--

Tip: DeepL translator from Cologne start-up come with the same translation.

Posted by
1378 posts

I just say "ein kaffee mit heißem milch bitte"

@Nigel: am I allowed to tune your German a little bit?
"einen Kaffee mit heißer Milch, bitte" :-)

Posted by
23259 posts

yes please - I'm never perfect but usually get what I need. Thanks for the tuning.

Posted by
1378 posts

Good to know: Coffee tastes are very different in Germany due to the different tap water hardnesses and tastes we have. More on influence of water quality to coffee you can read in a German article.

If you start to mix it up with milk you will reach the next level of complexity. although Hemme Milch is a wonderful pure drinking and baking milk I prefer different milk (more boiling taste) for my coffee which does not erase the deeper coffee taste so much. Not necessary to mention that also milk contains a lot of water ...

Posted by
52 posts

Markk,
Just to make sure: if I say what you said it will get me coffee with cold milk, correct? Thank you

Posted by
1378 posts

@OP: it depends on the venue. A good Barista will serve you a coffee automatically with hot milk but what I wrote as translation does not guaratee it. So I edited my last entry with "heiß" = hot.

Posted by
3126 posts

skim milk = fat free. or at least less than 0.5 % fat.
cream = NOT condensed milk! Closest I can get with my limited German is sahne . it is the cream you can use to make whipped cream, but it is not whipped when used in coffee this way.

Might just be easier to get the coffee with whole milk. Doesn't the skim and the cream balance out to close to whole milk?

Posted by
52 posts

You would think it equals out to whole milk, but there is something better about it with the crea. I don’t use all cream, because it makes me sick
I am so used to going to a chain coffee store and ordering the same thing every time. I don’t know what to do in a real coffeehouse.
I can’t wait,
Thank you

Posted by
1378 posts

Doesn't the skim and the cream balance out to close to whole milk?

Food is not maths. It can equal out by numbers' average in the right mix but not taste wise. Also from its characteristics I would not replace milk for baking by a mix of water and cream.

Posted by
17618 posts

Markk nailed it.

Coffee: der Kaffee
Milk: die Milch
Since it was a sentence fragment (no verb), the parts of speech are debatable, but I assume Kaffee is the direct object (akkusativ, in German), therefore it is einen Kaffee.
Since "mit" takes the dativ, it's mit heißer Milch.

Sorry to seem snarky, but if you're advising people on how to say something you should really get it right. The declension of articles and adjectives is important in German.

"I would rather decline two beers than one German adjective" The awful German language, by Mark Twain,

Posted by
52 posts

Will think of you all when I get it right and am enjoying it after a morning run.

Posted by
1378 posts

Just enjoy your coffee and your journey and maybe add your experience afterwards here for the next traveler(s).

By the way: "Mark" is the only first name to which you can add all three German articles "der", "die" und "das" in a meningful way - of course these are all different meanings ;-)

Posted by
7628 posts

Of course, Mark nailed it, the guy is German!

Make it easy and just say: Milch Kaffee, bitte. Latte Macchiato bitte. Cappucino bitte. Kaffee bitte.
They always provide milk or creamers and sugar.

Posted by
17618 posts

OK, Mark, I'll bite.
das Mark = marrow
der Mark = mark (?)
die Mark = currency

or are there others?

Posted by
1378 posts

Der Mark is just a person named "Mark".
Das Mark = marrow.
Die Mark has multiple meanings, either the ex-currency or in old German it means "border area".

Posted by
7628 posts

German is tough and when people make an effort, it shouldn't be criticized or made fun of.
My grammar is awful, because I learned German all on my own, carrying around a dictionary and watching Sesam Strasse. My vocabulary is extensive and I can read and talk about anything you like for days, without speaking English. Yet, there is always someone who wants to correct my der, die, das, usw. or make fun of my accent. I hate this. It isn't kind, it isn't polite.

Posted by
3126 posts

Ms. Jo.,

I understand completely. One of my first jobs out of college was translating technical documentation from German to English. So I know the written language very well. Doesn't mean I know the spoken language all that well, and because I get little or no practice speaking German, I sound terrible when I do speak it. How did one friend put it? "You sound like those Germans who have lived in South America since WWII."

Posted by
3931 posts

Ms. Jo, I agree. We just recently returned from a month in France, and I often used the wrong gender of nouns and adjectives. I was delighted that every single French person with whom I spoke was kind and understanding. A few gently corrected me, which was fine with me. One waiter kept up a running joke all evening after I used the wrong pronoun when I was telling him what my husband wanted for dinner. But he - actually both the waiter and my poor husband - were good-natured about it, and we all had a few good laughs.

Learning any language is a major feat; we need to be encouraged to try to speak. I spent several years being afraid to open my mouth when we lived in a foreign country, because I was terrified I would make a mistake. Luckily, I got over it. Well, mostly. :-) And travel is much more rewarding now that I do my damnedest, and let the articles and pronouns fall where they may.

Posted by
52 posts

Well,......maybe I should just try to order my coffee in English.....or type it in to my phone now and hold it up for someone to read. 😀

Posted by
3931 posts

Daisydrum, you'll be fine. Except when you try to order mixed milks and sugar-free syrups... I don't know about Germany and Austria, but I think in France and Italy you'd get some puzzled looks in response to those requests.

Enjoy your tour, and your coffee. It's a major part of European culture, so milk it (so to speak.)

Posted by
23259 posts

Regarding sugar free syrups for coffee, I find it very had to get them in a supermarket here in England. I get mine when I go to Germany. My successes have been at both Real markets (that is the name of the supermarket - they have great carrier bags) and Hieber (a fantastic supermarket, a very small part of the EDEKA network). Those syrups are part of what I bring back on most trips to southern Germany.

If they have it in the supermarkets people must also have a way of consuming it when out and about...