Why Do People Drink Coffee After Dinner?

When we think of coffee, we usually think of the start of the day. Even though it’s a drink that can be enjoyed any time of the day, the highest amount of coffee consumption happens in the morning. 

Since coffee is inherently a warm drink, it’s often associated with breakfast, which contributes to it being considered a morning drink. On top of this, coffee is perhaps the easiest way of intaking caffeine. As caffeine is known for its stimulating effect, which definitely comes in handy for picking ourselves up in the morning, there is no wonder that coffee is the cornerstone of our mornings.

That being said, there are plenty of people who specifically drink coffee after dinner, even if they aren’t regular coffee drinkers who start their mornings with a cup of coffee. 

We feel like this is something you either do all the time or something you never do, which is why you may be confused to hear this if you aren’t someone who drinks coffee after dinner. At this point, you are probably thinking about how it makes no sense to intake caffeine at a time where you should be winding down.

On the other hand, those who are used to having a cup of coffee after dinner will think nothing of it as it’s a routine thing that they have done their entire lives, simply because they find it enjoyable.

If you ended up here, you most likely belong to the group of people who don’t understand why people drink coffee after dinner. Fear not, as we will dive deep into the subject of after-dinner coffee and try to answer all the questions you may have.

The most common reason behind drinking coffee after dinner is to socialize. Whether it’s having a cup of coffee with your family as a part of a tradition, having coffee because it’s part of your culture, or having one simply to spend a good time with your friends, coffee is a great companion for socializing.

Reasons for Drinking Coffee After Dinner

To start things off, let’s go deeper into the reasons behind people drinking coffee after dinner.

Tradition

When we think of after-dinner coffee, we think of tradition. 

Having a few cups of coffee after dinner time is over is something that is a lot of families do to extend the time spent together and keep the conversation going. As coffee is a light drink that can be consumed after eating food without being unsettling, it’s a good option for an activity such as this.

Our older readers will recognize that after-dinner coffee indeed creates an environment to have some quality family time, with many great stories told over a cup of coffee. On the other hand, our younger readers may not be quite familiar with this tradition.

Socializing

Even though we mentioned that our younger readers most likely won’t be familiar with the tradition of having a cup of coffee with our family, having a cup of coffee at the coffee shop after dining outside with friends is quite common for everyone.

Since dinner usually isn’t long enough to spend enough time and socialize, we usually find ourselves having a few cups of coffee when we are done with dinner to keep socializing. While this activity can be done with any other drink or even without one, you will find that coffee is the cornerstone of such activities.

Culture

Drinking a cup of coffee is part of a lot of different cultures, such as the Italian or the French culture. For the most part, you will find that black coffee is the type of coffee that is considered to work best after dinner.

Since dinner is already a heavy meal, drinking a cup of coffee that is heavy in things such as milk or cream will only cause bloating and discomfort. As the reason behind coffee being the primary choice is to have a drink that is as light as possible, adding ingredients that cause coffee to lose this property would defeat the purpose of having a cup of coffee. 

For instance, unlike milk-based drinks such as a cappuccino that is drunk in the morning, a simple shot of espresso is usually the preference as an after-dinner coffee drink in Italy as it’s one of the lightest coffee you can have.

What Is After Dinner Coffee Called?

There isn’t a specific name for after-dinner coffee as the coffee drinks that are drunk after dinner are regular coffee drinks that can be enjoyed at any time of the day.

Simply put, it’s nothing more than a cup of coffee that is enjoyed after dinner with family and friends, with no special attributes that separate it from the coffee that we drink in the morning other than the fact black coffee usually being the choice.

Why Do They Serve Coffee After Dinner?

Since drinking coffee after dinner is already a social construct that we are accustomed to, it makes sense for restaurants to serve a cup of coffee when we are done with our meal.

This way, restaurants get to keep their customers for a longer amount of time and open up the opportunity for things such as desserts to be ordered, especially considering how well coffee pairs with desserts.

If restaurants didn’t serve coffee, customers would most likely seek a cup of coffee at a cafe anyway, and restaurants would lose out on a portion of potential business.

Is It Good to Have Coffee After Dinner?

While drinking coffee after dinner is mostly a social construct, it’s considered that it also has some benefits.

As caffeine has the effect of reducing appetite for a slight amount of time, having a cup of coffee helps you feel full for a longer period after having your dinner, saving you from having to consume more calories later in the night.

On top of this, it’s considered that drinking a cup of coffee can help with digestion, which definitely comes in handy after a large meal.

Is It Okay To Drink Coffee at Night?

The main reason for most people not preferring to have a cup of coffee at night is its caffeine content. The thought here is that just as it’s helpful in the morning to get us going, having caffeine at night may prevent us from falling asleep.

Those who are concerned about the possible negative effects of caffeine on the quality of their sleep are right to a certain point, as research tells us that having caffeine can have negative effects on sleep quality if it’s consumed close to bedtime.

To avoid the negative effects of caffeine on the quality of your sleep, you should drink your last cup of coffee before there are less than six hours left to your bedtime.

Conclusion

While it may sound illogical at first, having a cup of coffee after dinner is a widespread way of socializing that is enjoyed by plenty of people.

If you haven’t tried it yet simply because you thought intaking caffeine after dinner is a bad idea, give it a try next time you go dining with your friends. We are sure that you will enjoy it a lot, especially if you are a regular coffee drinker.

Have a great day, and enjoy your coffee!