How to ORDER COFFEE in Spanish (in a coffee shop & elsewhere) ☕

How to ORDER COFFEE in Spanish (in a coffee shop & elsewhere)

¿Quieren ver la cafetería de mi hermana? (Do you want to see my sister’s café?)

Se llama café Merlot, está en Cancún y me encanta. El café está riquísimo y los pasteles ni se diga. (It’s called Café Merlot. It’s in Cancun and I love it. The coffee is delicious and not to mention the cakes.)

I’m Paulísima from Spring Spanish, and in this video, we’ll explore all the Spanish you need to order coffee in Spanish like a pro.

1. Order coffee in Spanish in a café shop

Let’s see three dialogues for ordering coffee. Get a pen and paper to make notes… or easier, join the Spring Spanish Inner Circle. You’ll get study flashcards for this and all of our lessons.

Dialogue 1: Ordering a coffee in a coffee shop

Actor 1
¿Para tomar aquí o para llevar?
(For here or to go?)

Actor 2
Para llevar.
(To go.)

Actor 1
¿Cuál sería su orden?
(What would your order be?)

Actor 2
Un café americano, mediano. Un mocha grande, con doble shot de espresso, y un capuchino mediano con leche deslactosada. Por favor.
(An americano, medium. A large mocha, with a double espresso shot, and a medium cappuccino with lactose free milk. Please.)

Actor 1
Muy bien, entonces va a ser un café americano, mediano. Un mocha grande, con doble shot de espresso y un capuchino mediano, con leche deslactosada. ¿Está bien?
(Very well, then it will be an americano, medium. A large mocha, with a double espresso shot, and medium cappuccino with lactose free milk. Is that right?)

Actor 2
Sí, muchas gracias.
(Yes, thank you so much.)

Dialogue 2:

Actor 1
Buenos días, soy Carla y voy a ser su mesera. ¿Ya están listos para ordenar o necesitan unos minutos más?
(Good morning, I’m Carla and I’m going to be your waitress. Are you ready to order or do you need a few more minutes?)

Actor 2
Hola. Danos unos minutos más, por favor.
(Hello. Give us a few more minutes, please.)

Actor 1
Claro que si. (a few minutes later.)
¿Ya están listos para ordenar?
(Are you ready to order?)

Actor 2
Ahora sí estamos listos. Para mí va a ser un café mediano, por favor. ¿Me puede traer la leche aparte, por favor?
(Now we are ready. For me it’s going to be a medium coffee, please. Can I get milk on the side, please?)

Actor 1
Claro que sí. ¿Y para usted señorita?
(Of course. And for you miss?)

Actor 3
Para mí un latte mediano, frío. ¿Se puede con café descafeinado?
(For me a medium latte, cold. Can I have it with decaf?)

Actor 1
Claro que sí.
(Of course.)

Now let’s say you want to show off your knowledge about Mexican coffee

Actor 3
Una pregunta. ¿El café que usan es de Chiapas? ¿O de Veracruz?
(Question. The coffee that you use is from Chiapas? Or from Veracruz?)

Actor 1
Es de Chiapas, señorita. De la región de los Lagos de Montebello. Ese es el café de la casa. Pero también tenemos a su disposición café de Oaxaca de Veracruz y Guerrero.
(It’s from Chiapas, miss. From the region of the Lakes of Montebello. That’s the house coffee. But we also have at your disposal coffees from Veracruz, Oaxaca, and Guerrero.)

Actor 2
Ah, ok. Muchas gracias. De Guerrero, guau. ¿Será de casualidad de Atoyac?
(Oh, ok. Thank you very much. From Guerrero, wow. Is it by any chance from Atoyac?)

Actor 1
¡Sí! ¡De hecho sí! No es una zona tan conocida. ¡Guau! Me sorprende su conocimiento, señorita. Se ve que es muy conocedora del café mexicano.
(Yes! It actually is! It’s not a very popular area. Wow! I’m surprised by your knowledge, miss. You seem to be knowledgeable of Mexican coffee.)

Actor 3
Gracias, la verdad es que me encanta todo sobre el café de México.
(Thanks, the truth is that I love everything about coffee from Mexico.)

Attention: If someone asks for “just coffee”, they are referring to a black coffee or “americano”. Also, it’s very common to order “leche aparte” (milk on the side). If you throw in some knowledge about Mexican coffee, you’re going to impress the servers.

In terms of coffee drinks, there are some differences between Mexico and the USA. For example, café de olla is a unique Mexican coffee drink that you won’t find in the US. Unless made by Mexicans, I guess. Café de olla is made with artisanal sucrose and cinnamon. On the other hand, drinks like iced coffee and cold brew are not as popular in Mexico as they are in the USA.

2. About coffee culture in Mexico

In Mexico, coffee shops are places where one goes, generally, to chat or work.

Café o cafetería. Both work to say coffee shop, or coffee place. Café o cafetería.

Pause… Have you subscribed to the channel yet? If you have thank you so much, and if you haven’t, now is the right time to do it.

  • In Mexico, the most consumed coffee is instant coffee. I grew up drinking Nescafé with milk and sugar.
  • Although Mexico is a great producer and exporter of coffee, Mexico is far from being one of the countries with the highest coffee consumption in the world.
  • But.. Despite this, 85 percent of Mexicans drink coffee.
order coffee in spanish stats in mexico

In fact,

  • It is the third most consumed beverage in Mexico, after water and sodas. And consumption is increasing.
  • Now there are coffee places everywhere. (The increase in consumption of coffee, in Mexico in the latest years, has caused that there is a consumption has generated a greater supply in establishments that sell coffee.)

For example, my sister’s coffee place in Cancun. This is a typical mom and pop shop. The menus are displayed on the walls and they also have written menus. And lately, they also have menus available through a QR code.

  • The most Mexican coffee drink is “café de olla”.) Which like I mention, is made with piloncillo (natural sugar cane sweetener) and Mexican cinnamon.
  • Street coffee: In Mexico City, it’s common to find peddlers that sell coffee. It’s very common to find them in the mornings and at night. The type of coffee that they sell is the favorite among Mexicans: instant coffee, and in these stalls they also sell sweet bread.

Use the Spanish that you’ll learn in this video to learn to order.

3. Type of coffee shops in Mexico

When I went to college, I used to meet with my friends to study for the final exams at a coffee shop called Sanborns. Sanborns is a chain. Many Sanborns cafés open 24 hours. Most importantly, coffee has refill. Which is not so common in Mexico.

Those two factors, that it’s open 24 hours and that you can have all the coffee you want, make Sanborns a perfect place for a study group.

Sanborns is one of the many businesses owned by Mexico’s richest man, Carlos Slim (Have you ever heard about him?) Tell me in the comments.

Sanborn’s is rather a restaurant and bar, but much of its clientele, much much part of it, actually goes for “the little coffee”.

More about the subject of “El cafecito”, including some controversy regarding coffee and children, later on.

4. Coffee drinking in Mexico and Latin America

In Mexico, it is very common to gather around a cup of coffee.

Actor 1
¿Qué ondas? ¿Nos vemos en casa de mamá al rato para el cafecito?
(What’s up? See you at mom’s house later for a little coffee?)

Actor 2
Sí, claro que sí. Llevo pan.
(Yes, of course. I am bringing bread.)

Actor 1
No, no lleves. Yo voy a llevarlo. Ya lo compré.
(No, don’t bring. I’ll bring it. I already bought it.)

Actor 2
¿Pero compraste conchas de vainilla?
(But did you buy “conchas” of vanilla?)

Actor 1
Sí y también de chocolate. Además mamá me dijo que tiene pastel de tres leches.
(Yes and also of chocolate. Als mom told me she has 3 milks cake.)

Actor 2
Ah claro, seguro le sobró del bautizo de Pablito.
(Oh right, I’m sure she had some left over from Pablito’s christening.)

Actor 1
Sí, de hecho sí. Hablando del bautizo de Pablito… ¿Viste la escena que hizo Manuel con su esposa en el estacionamiento?
(Yes, actually yes. Speaking of Pablito’s baptism… Did you see the scene that Manuel made with his wife in the parking lot?)

Actor 2
¡No! No lo vi, pero tía Nora me medio contó algo.
(No! I didn’t see it, but Aunt Nora kind of told me something.)

Actor 1
Al rato te cuento todo el chisme.
(I’ll tell you all the gossip later.)

Actor 2
Dale. Nos vemos al rato.
(Okay. See you later.)

Actor 1
Pero llega puntual. A las seis y media quedamos. Bye.
(But be punctual. We agreed to meet at six-thirty. Bye.)

Actor 2
Espera, otra cosa. Por favor lleva una taza chiquita para tu hija. Es que la vez pasada se le rompió su tacita. Entonces solo quedó una taza chiquita en casa de mamá y no quiero que los niños se la estén peleando.
(Wait, one more thing. Please bring a little cup for your daughter. It’s just that last time her little cup broke. So there is only one small cup left at mom’s house and I don’t want the kids to fight over it.)

Actor 1
Sí, gracias por recordarme.
(Yes, thank you for reminding me.)

“El cafecito” is used as an excuse to catch up with family members, and/or friends. We indulge in sweet treats like Mexican pastries and cakes, all sprinkled with a little bit of chisme, the Mexican art of gossiping. At home the most commonly drunk coffee is instant coffee or from a coffee maker.

And yeah, you heard well, In Mexico is not uncommon for children to drink coffee. It’s normally mostly milk, but still…

We Mexicans can be so weird as you will continue learning in the lesson that follows.

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