My tastebuds and overall feelings towards coffee changed during the year when we moved to Florence, Italy. Now that we live in the US again, I still don't drink coffee regularly as I eventually did in Italy, but I've learned quite a bit, and feel like my tastebuds evolved in our time oversees. In Italy there's an expression: "buon caffe!" that means "good coffee" and is used as commonly as "good day" and that it's a directive just as much as it's a pleasantry.
I never was much of a regular coffee drinker when we lived in the States, and only had anything coffee about 1 time per month and it was normally a cold, ice-blended, mint-chocolate flavored, $4 concoction. When we visited Italy before, it was obvious that a small stop into a bar for a quick espresso is a big part of the culture, and so I did this several times but never felt the urge to continue.
But just a month after we got settled in Florence, my coffee experience began evolving. First, it was just standing awkwardly with my husband at the bar while he downed his espresso and having to nicely say "Niente per me, grazie" a couple times as the barista would make sure I didn't want anything. Next, it was moving to the cioccolato caldo (hot chocolate) so I could at least enjoy a drink of sorts during caffe' break at language school. By the end of the second month I'd moved on to an occasional caffe' corretto (espresso with small tip of flavored liquor) - my favorite switched with my mood between Baileys or sambuca.
*One thing about this drink is that it should only be ordered in the afternoon or later (since Italian have very strong unspoken rules of exactly when a drink can or can't be ordered...if you slip up, you get the "eyes looking over the reading glasses" stare by the locals). Another example of this rule is that a cappuccino or latte macchiato should never be ordered after 10am (11am is pushing it, but the weekends lend themselves to a later cut-off time since people sleep in).
By the end of the third month I'd graduated to caffe' macchiato (coffee "stained" with a spot of milk) a couple times a week. Then finally I began the trek that has led to my quite regular consumption of Italian caffe'...the marocchino. It's like a macchiato but with cacao between the layers of espresso and frothy milk - and it comes in a tiny (clear) glass that sometimes has a cute metal handle. If you're lucky you'll happen upon a cafe that puts chocolate syrup on the bottom as well...YUM!