Coffee is a small tree native to the Ethiopian plateau, where it grows spontaneously even at high altitudes. The most important species is called "Coffea Arabica" and is characterized by large leaves and small white flowers. Other species are the «Robusta» and «Liberica» , which appeared in more recent times. The name coffee derives from the Arabic "qahwä" which, then passing through the Turkish form "akhweh" (meaning "what stimulates", which "brings up") has become "coffee" in English, "café" in French and Spanish, coffee in Italian and "kafee" in German.
It seems that the discovery of Arabica dates back to 570 BC, but it was not until the 15th century that the plant began to be cultivated in Southern Arabia, from where it then spread to the countries bathed by the Indian Ocean and, subsequently, to the Old and the New world. Around 1700 large crops began in Brazil, but only at the beginning of the 1800s a massive export began. The Venetians introduced coffee to Italy: the first coffee shop was born in Venice in 1500. The coffee plant requires a warm and humid climate. The ripe fruit contains two grains, or seeds, from which the drink of the same name is obtained. Coffee is best preserved in grains, placed in a cool and dry place; while ground coffee should be consumed quickly because it quickly loses its aroma.