"Is there coffee?"
Translation:Finns det kaffe?
Är det kaffe = is it coffee
Finns det kaffe = is there coffee
If you're, say, pointing to a container of some blackish beverage wondering whether it's coffee or oil, you'd say "är det kaffe?". If you're simply wondering whether there is coffee in the kitchen or similar situations, you'd ask "finns det kaffe?".
Does that help?
Swedish syntax is pretty similar to English. What a gift!!! Tack så mycket Svenska!
Why does Det finns kaffe not work here? I imagined it to mean the same thing, There exists coffee?
Det finns kaffe would be a statement, meaning 'There is coffee', not a question. Questions are created by putting the verb before the subject (first in the sentence, if there isn't a question word).
That actually makes a lot of sense. Kind of like how in English it changes from 'There is coffee,' to 'Is there coffee?'
Clear and concise answer making things easier, you guys are just great :)