Many people consider the coffee culture to be a very American concept and the TV show Friends has promoted this idea further. However that is not to say that there are not European coffee shops and that this is an idea that has very much migrated onto the continent. At the same time it’s also the case that many European countries have had their own coffee culture and their own European coffee shops that came before it was ever big in the US.
England is well known for drinking tea and it’s true that if you ask the majority of Brits they’ll say that they prefer a cup of tea over a coffee. However there are still many European coffee shops in England and many of these are the same franchises found in the US. These include such European coffee shops as Costa, Starbucks, Café Nero and Coffee Culture. These serve tea as well as all of the usual coffee varieties such as espressos, lattés and cappuccinos, and are particularly popular among students who meat their to socialise during the day to work, and also among the self employed. Many busy professionals will also use European coffee shops in England for a boost during their work break.
Many of these same brand names also exist on the continent in Germany, France and Italy but at the same time these also have many of their own smaller cafes which normally have outdoors seating and are very popular thanks to the laid back lifestyle that many of these continental countries enjoy. In Paris particularly their cafes (they are generally known as cafes rather than as European coffee shops) are very popular and walking down any street you are likely to find lots of forward facing seats with locals drinking coffee and tea and watching the world go by.
In Eastern Europe the coffee culture is not quite the same and European coffee shops are rarer to find. In many Eastern European countries such as Poland, the hot drink of choice is tea with lemon rather than milk and you will find there are fewer dedicated European coffee shops as a result of this and the colder climate in many of these countries.