The all-embracing Croatian cafe culture is more than loafing around at sun-lit terraces – a familiar image of Zagreb, Split, Zadar or Dubrovnik. This fragrant dark liquid is the lifeblood with which we measure our time, quality of life and soundness of our social ties.
Just ‘coffee’ won’t get you far in Croatia. It’s time you learn the whole cosmology.
Croatian cafe culture connects people
#1 Ajmo na kavu [let’s go for coffee] is the most widespread invitation to socialize. It may sound innocuous, but if you’ve never had coffee with a Croat, you need to branch out from the usual image of chit-chatting over coffee.
#2 Croats meet for coffee at various occasions and with different agendas. Sometimes it’s as plain as catching up with friends. There’s nothing sweeter than grabbing coffee after food or clothes shopping, with bags resting by your legs. But the informal cafe setting is also perfect for closing business deals and discussing ‘terms and conditions’ that escape both large and small print.
Croatian cafe culture opens doors to people’s homes
#3 Dođi na kavu [come round for coffee] is a genuine invitation to visit someone’s home. It’s not mere courtesy like the English equivalent ‘you must come round for dinner’.
When a Croat invites you to their home, they mean it, so you should follow through. You will most likely be served a delicious homemade cake too. Lucky you!
Croatian cafe culture makes things happen
#4 Coffee makes a perfect gift when you visit someone’s home. For ages, a golden standard has been bringing Franck cigla [a brick] – a brick-shaped 250 grams vacuum-packed coffee of the Franck brand (Croatia’s oldest coffee roaster). While bringing a bottle of wine is a newly acquired act of good manners, showing up with a brick is a foolproof choice.
You can buy the best gift at Croatian Store, which offers a large assortment of Croatian coffees and the Franck brand.
Ledo Zagorje Strudel 600g
Zagorje Strudel, prepared from the finest pastry dough and filled with a delicious fresh cheese filling, are among Croatia’s best loved delicacies.