Latte Natte

Syz and I were placing orders at a coffee house in Shanghai recently when we both heard something a little odd. I ordered my mocha and he a latte. The woman behind the counter repeated the order, speaking his instead as “natte”, at least how we heard it.

Sure enough, there on the menu it read “Latte 拿铁”, ‘na tie’. I’ve never really taken the time to learn much more than “mocha” when it’s come to coffee, so it wasn’t something I’d seen before. Firing up Karan Misra’s “Qingwen” CC-Dict on my iPhone, again we read 拿铁.