The Golden Bean

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Last weekend I paid 4.60euros for a cappuccino – at least three times more expensive than I usually pay back home in Barcelona. Why so high? Firstly, I was in Vienna. Secondly, I was drinking in one of the city’s renowned UNESCO-protected coffee houses and my blend of weak espresso and crackling foamed milk was consumed under a stunning Italian-style ceiling that dates from 1860. (See the Coffee Universe article entitled Viennese Whirl for more details.) In short, I had location, location, location – but really I’d have preferred, aroma, aroma, aroma.

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Still, it made me think – is this the most expensive coffee in the world? Not quite.

Travel to the Emirates Palace in Abu Dhabi and you can forget about cinnamon or chocolate sprinkles on your speciality coffee. Instead your cappuccino is served with real gold flakes on the foam – but you’ll pay around 12 euros for the pleasure. You’ll pay the same if you order your coffee fix at The Ritz in Madrid, a stunning hotel located next door to the Prado museum and Retiro Park.

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Pic by BurCarioca

If you’re visiting the Trevi Fountain in Rome, no doubt you’ll toss in a coin or two. But make sure you keep a little cash for your coffee fund – prices in the city are notoriously high, with cafes close to the main tourist attractions charging up to nine euros for a cappuccino on their outdoor terrace.

But is it worth it? That’s for you to decide. The prices are extreme because of the high-class locations so sit back, relax and enjoy the surroundings – and hopefully your brew will be as good as the view.