The perfect espresso cups

Coffee lovers are on a constant search for aromatic coffee beans, roasted to perfection. They get up early on weekends to study Italian, hoping to uncover the nuances lost in the translation of their espresso-machine manual. They mumble incantations like “ruotare la manopola in senso antiorario per aprire il rubinetto di erogazione vapore” with a passion normally reserved for the poetry of Dante. They listen in rapture to the machine’s rumbles as the water rushes through the coffee at the ideal pressure.

But, after all this effort, they pour their brew into bulky, thick porcelain cups. European cafés use these cups, they tell you with pride. True, but cafés only use them because they rarely break. The coffee tastes so much better in thin coffee cups!

Vista Alegre, the great Portuguese porcelain maker, produces the best espresso cups we have ever tried.  They have the perfect shape and come in bright, joyful colors. These cups are hard to find outside of Portugal. So, if you are visiting Portugal, here’s your chance to bring something unique to your java friends.

Here is a link to the Vista Alegre website.

5 thoughts on “The perfect espresso cups

  1. Yes I too have visited the vista Alegre store in Lisbon a few years ago and bought these exact expresso cups. Last year my husband dropped two and I am heart broken. I have looked at where I can replace them and have had no luck. Do u have any suggestions. Btw. I love your blog and Portugal is our favorite vacation destination ever. Traci, auburn, ca

  2. In the US, our fancy Italian coffeemaker broke down after a few months use but our Portuguese stovetop moka coffeepot continues to work every time, delivering a piping hot pour of delicious espresso. Sadly, cannot find any moka pots that work on our Portuguese vidro indução stovetops (this is why the pot is now employed in the US). Any suggestions anyone? Oh, and after our first visit to Foz Coa in 2003 we bought the VA espresso cups with images of engraved animals from the river cliffs – happily, still use them everyday.

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