As Benedict XVI flew to Gandolfo, cardinals from around the world gathered in Rome in general congregation before the conclave to elect a new pope begins. We’re told of discussions and pre-conclave meetings with frequent coffee breaks. So what type of coffee is served in the Vatican?
The coffee culture of the Vatican began in the 1600’s when Clement VIII gave it his blessing by “baptizing” coffee to save it from the infidel culture of the East. During the second half of the 19th century, coffee from Puerto Rico was a favorite of the Vatican, in particular Cafe Alto Grande. Over the years the coffees of Puerto Rico have been favored by the Pope’s household including Café Rico’s San Carlos Selection. According to Ramiro L. Colon, first administrator of Cooperativa de Cafeteros de Puerto Rico, Café Rico Yaucono Selecto, described as creamy with an almost buttery taste and a hint of chocolate undertones, is the official coffee of the Vatican. Available at specialty stores and on the internet, I think I’ll purchase a bag to celebrate the election of the new Pope.