Barraquito, the coffee that was born in Santa Cruz de Tenerife

Tenerife is the universal capital of the barraquito. This appears just by typing "barraquito" in Google. And although it has a loyal following all over the world, unfortunately it cannot be enjoyed outside of Tenerife (the secret ingredient for enjoying its flavour is the Canary Island climate).

The sweet combination that makes up the barquito means that its irresistible taste is not lacking after a good meal - the after-dinner meal in Spain is sacred - although it is desirable at any time of the day.

The origin of the 'barraquito

The origin of the famous Canarian coffee dates back to the middle of the 20th century, when a man ordered a cortado in the Imperial Bar in Santa Cruz de Tenerife with the ingredients that now make up this sweet drink: Licor 43 and cinnamon (as well as other ingredients that we reveal below).

The gentleman in matter became a regular at the bar and practically every day, when he walked in the door, they were already making him the coffee that would go to the story as "barraquito" - by its nickname, "Barraco".

Starting with the condensed milk at the bottom, the final creation is a work of art in layers which it is recommended to drink immediately as most ingredients are cold.

Elaboration of the barquito

The barraquito is usually served in a glass and the original recipe includes: coffee, milk, condensed milk, cinnamon, lemon peel and Licor 43.

There are several types of barraquito in the Canary Islands but the traditional drink should be poured into the glass as follows:

  • a layer of condensed milk followed by a shot of Liqueur 43
  • coffee (better if it's espresso)
  • milk (preferably in foam)
  • a touch of cinnamon and a little lemon peel

Follow this order in the layers achieves the proper balance of flavors and colors. The fact is that the different densities of the ingredients make this curious effect that only can "break" when mixed with the spoon.

This is the basic version of the barraquito but the canary specialty can be found in all bars and restaurants on the island and, depending on the area, has variations and different ways to be served.

Apart from the typical barquito, you can also find the zaperoco (with an extra touch of liquor) or milk and milk (the bar without liquor).

Did you know that this coffee is difficult to prepare outside Spain because Licor 43 is not easily found?

Source:, twitter Experience Tenerife ,


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