We chat with the Greek coffee professional about his new book, his love for coffee, and his favorite coffee cocktail recipes.
BY KATRINA YENTCH
BARISTA MAGAZINE ONLINE
Photos courtesy of Kostas Kaperonis; cover photo by @shotsoflouis
Kostas Kaperonis is obsessed with coffee, writing, cocktails, and the intersection of all three—and doing all three at the same time? It’s very likely. Kostas’ passion for coffee began in 2013, when he launched Coffee and Brunch Magazine in Greece, a print and online space for the Greek coffee community to share the excitement and news of specialty coffee together. During this time, Kostas has built an archive’s worth of beverage industry books, as well as spearheaded Greece’s own Coffee Business Awards. We chat further with Kostas about his coffee background and his latest release, The Coffee Cocktails Recipe Book, which has 50 unique recipes crafted by himself and other Greek barista-bartenders extraordinaire.
Katrina Yentch: Hi Kostas! It’s wonderful to meet you. Can you please tell me about your coffee journey and how you got interested in cocktails?
Kostas Kaperonis: I started my relation with coffee at 2013, when I published Coffee & Brunch Magazine in Greek market. Since then I wrote two books (both bestsellers in Greece) about coffee: The (First) Coffee Cocktails Recipes Book with 50 unique coffee cocktails recipes, and the Caffé Business, an ultimate guide for the professionals of the coffee industry in Greece in the Greek language. I also wrote three (bestselling in Greece) books about cocktails, The Culture of Tiki Cocktails, The Culture of Scotch Whiskey, and 50 Summer Cocktail Recipes from 50 Cocktail Bars in Greece, all of which are in the English language.
In mid-2021 I will publish my new book The 100 Most Historic and Beautiful Coffee Shops on Earth. I will present 100 historic coffee shops from five continents: Europe, North America, Asia, Africa, and Oceania. I visited them on my 78 trips in 30 years … from 1991-2021! It will be in the Greek and English languages.
I also am the founder and the co-organizer of the Coffee Business Awards, started in 2019 in Greece. The Coffee Business Awards are the only awards about the coffee industry (coffee people, coffee brands, baristas, coffee equipment, etc.) in Greece.
So many books! That’s great. Why did you decide to write another book about this subject?
I decided to write a book about this subject because coffee cocktails is the new trend in Greek market, and I hope worldwide!!!
How did you come up with the recipes in this book? Do they feature other bartenders/baristas too, and what are their names?
Two specialists helped me to create the unique recipes. Ilias Gkrintzalis, who is an SCA authorized trainer, certified quality manager, and owner of (the Greek) coffee and pharmacy’s diploma. I also had help from Panagiotis Fragkos, a celebrated bartender, instructor at Bar Academy Hellas, and brand ambassador for Fabbri 1905.
Is there a favorite recipe of yours that you would like to share with the readers?
My favorite recipe is for a Coffee Negroni, the recipe from the cover of my book:
30 ml/1 ounce Marendry Fabbri
30 ml/1 ounce sweet vermouth
60 ml/ 2 ounces carbonated cold-brew espresso (or espresso with soda water)
1 dash orange bitter
Directions: Put all the ingredients into a mixing glass with ice. Stir and strain into an old fashioned glass with ice. Garnish with orange peel.