The taste for coffee and chicory was developed by the French during their civil war. Coffee was scarce during those times, and they found that chicory added body and flavor to the brew. The Acadians from Nova Scotia brought this taste and many other french customs (heritage) to Louisiana. Chicory is the root of the endive plant. Endive is a type of lettuce. The root of the plant is roasted and ground. It is added to the coffee to soften the bitter edge of the dark roasted coffee. It adds an almost chocolate flavor to the Cafe Au Lait served at Cafe Du Monde.
The Cafe Du Monde Coffee and Chicory is traditionally served Au Lait, mixed half and half with hot milk. However, people have a personal preference on how they like their coffee. People like their coffee strong and black, or with sugar; maybe with a little more milk, or maybe a little weaker brew.
Visit the original Cafe Du Monde in New Orleans.