About White Coffee

In many English-speaking countries, white coffee is used to refer to regular black coffee that has had milk, cream or some other "whitener" added to it. Cream varieties (often called "creamers" in the U.S.), can be made of dairy milk, corn syrup derivatives, soy, or nut products. Sweeteners used include cane sugar or artificial ingredients.

White coffee should be distinguished from café au lait, in that white coffee uses room temperature milk or other whitener, while café au lait uses heated or steamed milk.

In Malaysia, the original White Coffee started in the town of Ipoh, referring to a drink made from coffee beans roasted in margarine, brewed and served with sweetened condensed milk in a cream-color form. An example is Ipoh White Coffee, or Chang Jiang White Coffee. Local coffee manufacturers subsequently mix instant coffee powder with non-dairy creamer and sugar together, and market the 3-in-1 mixture as White Coffee as well. Some manufacturers now taking the sugar out of the mixture, and market the 2-in-1 mixture as Sugar Free White Coffee.

In the United States, white coffee may also refer to coffee beans which have been roasted to the yellow roast level and when prepared as espresso produces a thin yellow brew, with a high acidic note. There is a common misconception that white coffee is more highly caffeinated than darker roasted coffee. White coffee is generally used only for making espresso drinks, not simple brewed coffee. With shorter roasting times natural sugars are not caramelized within the coffee beans, leaving no bitter aftertaste. The flavor of white coffee is frequently described as nut like, with pronounced acidity.

There is also a form of white coffee, native to Yemen, which refers to the ground shell of the coffee bean. This form of coffee earns its name from its color, and is brewed in the same manner as regular coffee, only with some spices added.

Lebanese and Syrian white coffee contains absolutely no coffee. White Coffee is an herbal tea, invented in Beirut, made with orange blossom water. Traditionally served after meals in Lebanon and Syria, it is often accompanied by candied rose petals, served in tiny, delicate dishes. White coffee is a sedative, and calms the nerves while stimulating digestion after a particularly rich or heavy meal. In Lebanon, orange blossom water is given to fussy babies; it is also used as a perfume, either in the bathwater or directly on the skin. [source: White Coffee]