Andrew K. answered 04/30/22
Latin Tutor with 17 Years Experience
Your question interests me because not only do I teach my students to speak the Latin language, but all of their conversations are real ones, about their everyday lives. This means that it is necessary for them to learn extensive vocabulary from the post-Classical period. People weren't drinking coffee before the 15th century, but Latin was in common use among the educated up until the 20th century, and so there is a variety of words for "coffee". My go-to source for modern Latin vocabulary is Vicipaedia (the Latin version of Wikipedia). The Vicipaedia page lists eight different words for "coffee", but the first word listed is "coffeum, -i", so this is the one I have generally used in my own conversations. ("Capulus, -i" means "handle" or "coffin", so this is completely wrong.)
The other two words are easy to translate since they do not have multiple options. "Nothing" is "nihil", and "before" is "ante". "Nihil" is an indeclinable noun, which means that it is the same form in every case, which eliminates the need for any context to this phrase. It will be "nihil" no matter where it appears in a sentence.
"Ante" is a preposition that always takes an object in the accusative case. Since "coffeum" is the object of "ante", we use the accusative form of this 2nd-declension-neuter noun, which is also "coffeum". As in English, in Latin the object of a preposition follows the preposition, so "before coffee" is translated "ante coffeum".
With all this in mind, therefore, one valid translation of "Nothing before coffee" would be "Nihil ante coffeum".
Thanks for the question, and fruere tuo coffeo! (Enjoy your coffee!)
Ave atque vale!