- A small coffee cup.
“My aunt is particular about her beverages, and she will only drink her after-dinner coffee out of a demitasse cup and saucer.”
“I collect my spare change in an adorable patterned demitasse.”
“The demitasse set matches the tea service we received for our wedding.”
French, mid-19th century
Why this word?
A “demitasse” is a small coffee cup, usually used to serve espresso — it comes from the French word of the same spelling and literally means “half cup.” However, the vessel does not usually hold one-half of a cup measure (8 ounces); it simply holds about one-half of a standard coffee cup. A demitasse usually holds about 2 to 3 ounces, and it’s commonly plain white porcelain or ceramic, with a handle and a saucer. But it can also be found with patterns, or in glass or metal, or without a handle. Coffee and espresso drinkers can find a demitasse cup to suit any personal style.