After water, coffee is the most consumed drink in the world: a boom that owes a lot to the Asian market where drinking it is an experience designed specifically

Enchanting, unforgettable, unique, creative, trendy. These are all adjectives that go perfectly with a haute couture dress.

Design, create, innovation and product development. They are descriptions that coexist with a new piece of design.

But today more than ever these descriptions expand and extend to embrace the world of food. And specifically that of coffee.

How popular is coffee around the world?

The coffee culture has reached an ever-increasing sophistication and level of attention in recent years, exploding exponentially in the last two years. Especially in Asia. Homeland par excellence of the slow tea culture that today has opened up to the Western world and to the ever more consistent and rapid consumption of drink 'black'.

The future of coffee knows no more borders. After water, in fact, is the most consumed drink in the world.

In the last five years, according to the ICO (International Coffee Organization) data, it has grown by 1.5% on the Asian continent.

The new coffee culture in China differs by age group

The gigantic market Chinese is placed in the spotlight. Where, thanks to the growth of the middle class, which has embraced Western trends, there is a moment of happy explosion and expansion of tastes and customs. Both in consumption and in production.

According to Tuo Xiao-Yan, international award-winning barista and food journalist: 'China's coffee culture differs according to age group'.

Specification: "Generation X is attracted and fascinated by European traditions, especially French. The culture of coffee is linked to the literary and theatrical culture. Coffee shops are unique, niche boutiques. They serve sophisticated and personalized specialty coffee by day and turn into drink bars at dusk. So coffee becomes a cultural ritual".

Read also: In Italy, between specialty coffee and brewing experiences

Sartorial coffee in Hong Kong

As per APT Coffee, or 'A Personal Tailor', a place in Hong Kong where everything is tailor-made. Here you are given the option to order customized coffees by choosing both the blend and the type of coffee strength, both the milk foam and any other add-ons to create your own perfect cup of coffee. Unrepeatable.

Specialty coffee and Zen spaces in South Korea

Generation X also appreciates the slowness of the gesture of consuming coffee and the beauty of the place where this ritual of Western origin takes place.

To embrace this concept, the beautiful project of None Space, Time to B, in South Korea where the rule of 'No Takeaway' applies , 'No Plug' and 'No Wi-fi'. A Zen space where you can enjoy analog time and the surrounding nature while slowly sipping drip coffee prepared with an organic blend and freshly roasted beans.

"Young people, on the contrary" - continues Tuo Xiao-Yan - "are attracted to the world American . The fast language, the pop image, the cheerful and unexpected tastes, they are adopted in fashion as well as in food ". And so we see the flourishing of chains like Starbucks.

The Starbucks phenomenon and the pursuit of glocal flavors

In fact, after twenty years the American giant has reached the record of 6000 stores in China, with 1000 flagship stores in Shanghai alone. And it is here that Vanessa Chan - senior manager product - Ellis Ng - senior manager product development and innovation - Starbucks Asia Pacific and their Team, test, create and refine new drink recipes designed specifically for this market - China, Japan, Korea and the rest of Asia Pacific - and Generation Z.

"The mind runs between tradition and experimentation" explains Vanessa, "innovation reaches extreme levels . We have the opportunity to combine local flavors and ingredients, with family and social traditions".

This is exactly how it happened, for example, with the 47 Jimoto Frappuccino collection: a unique and special flavor and name for each of the 47 Japanese prefectures. The result is absolutely unexpected: a blend of typical local coffees and drinks. With flavors ranging from fresh strawberries, to the traditional macha, from spicy sesame seeds and edamame to the unusual taste of corn on the cob. All shaken with a good dose of caffeine.

The limited edition beverages designed for the holiday season amaze and intrigue. With colors, textures and flavors that connect to the spirit of Christmas: caramelized apples, candy canes, cinnamon, ginger, velvety surfaces, warm and joyful colors, soft and welcoming details, which are transformed into specialty coffees with equally creative names.

"Constant variable is the customer" - underlines Ellis Ng - "who is always at the center of any project and drink".

The Dewata Coffee Sanctuary in Bali

And it is precisely from here that one of the most interesting and recent Starbucks projects was born: the Dewata Coffee Sanctuary. An experience center in the heart of Bali. A special place, as special are the coffees offered for tasting, which sees the consumer involved in a series of interactive experiences that celebrate coffee and its history.

Thanks to a visual, physical and olfactory journey that moves from seed to cup, from procurement to roasting, from preparation to serving. All under one roof.

Cover photo: Time to B, a project by None Space in Yongin-si in South Korea: a zen space where no Take Away or wi-fi is allowed and drip coffee prepared with an organic blend and roasted beans at present (Ph. Kiwoong Hong)