The Good, the Bad and the Marocchino

We have been in Europe since Tuesday. After taking the long redeye from Vancouver to London we then traveled to Amsterdam. We stayed there for the evening, and the following day then made our way to Milano.

Our arrival to Milano was not as glamorous as I would have liked it to be. Our flight was delayed coming out of Amsterdam. When we got to the Milapenese airport at 9:30 at night, it seemed that all the staff had gone home for the evening. We bought our train tickets at a kiosk and found the only train that appeared to be in operation. Thinking it was the Milapenese express. It was not. Which we discovered when it took us an an hour and fifteen minutes to get into Milano as opposed to 30 minutes. Hungry and exhausted after spending the day site seeing in Amsterdam, I called an Uber from my phone. As we walk out of the station, the rain that was a slight drizzle at the airport is now a downpour. We find an awning to stand under waiting for the car to arrive. When it does arrive he can’t seem to find us. After 5 minutes of searching for each other we finally connect. We are soaked from running around in the rain. We finally reach our hotel. The driver is unable to go down the street it’s on because the blockades are up. We get out to walk, and track down our hotel. Which at first seem impossible to find. Luckily we find it. We get checked in and collapse into bed. Eating stroopwafel and potato puffs for dinner that we bought in a grocery store in Amsterdam. It’s midnight by the time we fall asleep. The next morning is the Barista Guild Co:Lab breakfast.

When my alarm goes off at 8:15 I do not want to get out of bed. Dan (my husband) barely moves from the sound. We need to sleep in. I decide to blow off breakfast. I contact the Barista Guild via social media about a shuttle to the espresso machine museum event that is happening today. It’s outside of the city about 30 minutes. They inform me that there is not a shuttle but that everyone is taking taxis. I look up how much it would be to taxi there, seventy euro. Not worth it. I’ll try to make my way there by train when I come back to Milano next week. I fall back to sleep in a haze, forgetting to set an alarm for us. We both wake up at 10:00, Dan in a panic. “The breakfast,” he says. I tell him I decided to skip it. Not to worry we will go to some of the other events.

We make our way to the Lavazza Flagship store. The community events calendar for Co:Lab says that there is something happening there. The baristas that work there do not know about it. Perhaps the manager knows? No. Allora, we have brunch and coffee instead. Milano toast of, ham, eggs and tomato. Dan has a prosciutto grilled sandwich. After skipping dinner we are blissfully full. For coffee Dan has a coldbrew coffee cocktail. I have a Marocchino Italian for Moroccan. I first head about this drink while reading Faith Willenger’s book Eating in Italy. It’s an espresso based drink with steam milk and a dusting of cocoa powder. Which makes the drink a tan color like Moroccan leather. Hence the name.


The texture is creamy and delicious. The milk has been steamed perfectly. This is why I have come to Italy to discover drinks that we don’t know of in the U.S. Drinks that Italians take for granted as birth rites.

Dan’s Coffeetail No. 10 is inventive and fun. It’s modern and made with coldbrew. As a barista I can appreciate it as a way to engage the guest. But, I know that this shop is catering to people like me. Tourist that love LaVazza coffee and want to experience it in a unique way.


After I find the event information on my phone. I show it to the Barista. “OH,” he says, “that is not an event, It’s just something on the menu that we offer. It’s very interesting.” We order it.

LaVazza Coffee Design experience.

LaVazza Coffee Design experience.

The Faema flagship is the host for Co:Lab so we head their next when we get there it is closed. There is a cupping happening elsewhere by the time we reach Faema. We head in the direction of the cupping. What happens at the cupping is s story for another time.

We leave before the event ends. We need some lunch at this point it’s around 3:00pm and we need to be making our way back to our hotel. We find a small place that was about to close but he lets us come in and get Pizza Pomodoro. It’s a type of pizza on Foccia bread. We sit in the shade of a park enjoying our pizza and drinks. We need to head back. I think we should just Uber. Dan says we could walk part of the way. We start walking. We get a little lost. We find our way, but then we get a little lost again. It takes us a. Hour to get back to the hotel. We are now running late for our train. We make a mad dash through the city. I can feel the blisters forming on my left foot. We find our hotel, grab our bags, and I call an Uber. I lost count of how many traffic laws the driver broke to get us there on time. I give him a €10.00 tip. We just make the train with three minutes to spare. I feel like I have won a survivalist television program. We are headed to Florence. I couldn’t be happier.