Drift magazine is a fascinating look at coffee culture around the world. Each volume focuses on a different city and their distinct coffee traditions. New York, Tokyo, Havana and Stockholm have been featured so far. Volume 4: Stockholm found its way to me through my Stack subscription over the summer.
Last week’s featured magazine, Peeps, knitted together a smorgasbord of cultures and concerns, whereas Drift focuses on one thing only: coffee. I do enjoy a good cup of coffee, but I’m by no means a coffee connoisseur, so I did wonder if I’d find a whole magazine dedicated just to coffee just in Stockholm a bit repetitive.
However, Drift use coffee as a springboard to explore Stockholm’s current events, people and history. The first few pages delve into the daily Swedish ritual called fika where people take a break together to chat, drink coffee and eat pastries, even while at work. Fika is then explored in more detail in various contexts through the magazine, such as the importance of fika to the integration of refugees to Sweden; how fika helps morale at work, and how it is so embedded in the psyche of Swedes that American companies in Sweden have adopted it; and how different generations chose to ‘fika’, whether at home or in coffee shops.
Every aspect of coffee in Stockholm is dissected in Drift: from how much Swedes like their coffee roasted (a lot, most people like it dark and bitter); the success of the company Oatly, who make a plant-based milk from oats; to the possibilities for waste products of coffee, such as using chaff, usually discarded after the roasting process, as fertiliser or flour when baking.
Not only did I learn a huge amount about Swedish culture through their coffee in Drift magazine, but the photography is stunningly beautiful too. I can’t wait to see what city the creators of Drift chose next. I’m quietly hoping for London, so I’ll know exactly where to go to get a great cup of coffee…
Drift, volume 4: Stockholm is available to buy now from stockists