Greece's Beloved Frappe: From Chance Encounter to Summer Staple

Mary Frappe

Frothy, tasty and the perfect hit of coffee, it is Greece's beloved Frappe.

Before fancy iced coffees, there was the legend: the Nescafé Frappé, the soul of Greek summers.

For decades, locals and tourists have relished this iconic, frothy delight. From humble tavernas to chic cafes, the ubiquitous frappé (even DIY kits at kiosks!) proves no frappé, no Greece.

Image result for Dimitris Vakondios frappe
Portrait of Dimitris Vakondios, Greece's representative of Nescafé and inventor of frappe.

Enter 1957, Thessaloniki Trade Fair. On a hot day, Dimitris Vakondios (Nestlé) craved his Nescafé Classic, but no hot water. Luckily, Nestlé showcased a new chocolate milk shaker for kids. A spark ignited! Vakondios used it to blend Nescafé with cold water.

And lo, the frappé was born, changing Greece's (and eventually the world's) coffee habits. From mountain towns to island villages, the love spread. Tourists discovered this simple joy, and from that warm September day, the frappé's reign began.

But how do you properly enjoy a frappé like a Greek? Slow down, savour it!

Shaking is key: Don't just add Nescafé to water. The initial vigorous shaking with a little water creates the signature froth. Remember, a flat frappé is a faux pas!

Embrace the Greek pace: Like their coffees, Greeks take their time with frappés. Enjoy it over long chats, reading, or even heated discussions (gesticulating encouraged!). Just mind your frappé!

Craving your own? Here's how:

  • Combine 2 tsp Nescafé, sugar (Greeks like 2 tsp for "medium," 3-4 tsp for "sweet"), and a little cold water. Shake vigorously or use a mini whisk until a light froth forms.
  • Pour over ice, add water, and top with milk (condensed or fresh).
  • Sip with a straw and savour the taste of Greek summer!

Bonus: Want to impress your Greek friends? Order your frappé "sketo" (without sugar) or "metrio" (medium sweetness). And remember, slow down and enjoy the frappé life!

Niko Hronopoulos has created an entertaining, unique and quirky video that explains how the coffee is made and gives a quick lesson on the history of coffee.

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