A Few Basics about Coffee
When you go to a coffee house, you have a great amount and variety of drink choices like Espresso, Regular Coffee, latté, caffé mocha, straight shot, cappuccino, and many many more
It can be a real problem just ordering unless you know what you are getting; really now who in their right mind wants to pay an outrageous amount of money for a mystery drink that you may not even like?
After reading this you’ll have a basic understanding of how most of the popular coffee drinks are made and what they are consist of.
Most coffee shop drinks start with espresso which is just coffee that is brewed a certain way. It is finely ground to a powder then very hot water is forced through this ground powder under intense pressure, this brewing process is timed so that the flavor along with the aromatic oils is extracted from the coffee powder and not the bitter parts. This makes for a strong flavored concentrated shot of coffee which is not bitter which is called espresso coffee.
Then there is…………….
The real secret about straight shot espresso coffee is the extraction time, volume, together with the golden crema which is the light brown layer of foamed coffee oils that float on top of a correctly extracted espresso.
The short shot better known as ristretto is extracted to a volume of almost three-quarters of an ounce. The shorter controlled pour gives a better essence of coffee and also reduces any chances of the bitter elements being extracted. In Europe when you order an espresso shot they usually serve the ristretto.
The long shot or lungo (longo actually means long in Italian and refers to coffee beverage generally made by adding much more water almost twice as much resulting in a stretched or long ‘lungo’ coffee shot.
A double shot is usually a two ounce shot using twice as much coffee in a espresso machine, and the correct method in which to serve a straight shot is to get it directly into a warmed demitasse cup. The warm demitasse cup will keep the straight shot warm also keep the cream for much longer. A straight shot is best enjoyed straight after brewing.
It is quite unusual to see people drinking straight shots of the espresso drink in America, as most people there drink different varieties using steamed milk mixed with the shots to make various different coffee drinks listed and more famous over there.
Caffé Latté is like cappuccino with more steamed milk and much less foam, a latté drink is made by means of holding back foam with a spoon whilst pouring the frothed milk from the steaming pitcher. The caffé latté is then topped up with small amounts of the foam which was held back..
Caffé latté is named as such because of the addition of coffee to milk; for those of us that prefer the drink cold iced latté can be made where cold milk is combined with the espresso ice is then added.
Cappuccino is mostly made with fluffy, wet foam which is mixed with espresso coffee whilst pouring to give it a blend of two flavors, old milk is an integral requirement, as is expertise in the foaming process. A Cappuccino drink usually has a large volume of foam making it a light weight fluffy drink and therefore is less filling.
Caffé Americano is a drink that is very similar to the American brewed coffee. It is made with a single or double shot of espresso depending on your taste and liking this is then combined with about 6 to 8 ounces of boiling hot water out of the espresso machine. This then results in a very smooth cup of coffee that is really hotter than regular brewed coffee.
Espresso Con Panna
This fabulous drink Espresso Macchiato is made by using whipped cream instead of the foamed milk. That is how the drink derives its name Con Panna which means ‘with cream’.
We now come to Espresso Macchiato which actually starts with a shot of espresso and a small amount of foamed milk is poured over with a spoon held upside down over the shot. The coffee drink gets the name Macchiato as the word in Italian means ‘marked’ and so this espresso is marked with foam and so named..
A caffé mocha is made by adding grilled, powdered chocolate or in syrup form to a hot shot of espresso this is then blended with steamed milk which is added to the espresso and chocolate mixture this is sometimes topped with some whipped cream, again for those of us that prefer the drink chilled and cold Iced mochas can be made with freezing cold milk, ice is then added after the coffee and chocolate have blended.
The Various other types of Coffee Flavored Drinks
There are many flavored coffee drinks such as: Caramel, Vanilla, Irish Creme, Hazelnut, Almond then there are also Fruit flavors like strawberry, orange, raspberry etc. These drinks normally start with a flavored syrup which is mixed with the hot espresso and stirred to mix well, steamed milk is then stirred in like in a latté to blend with the coffee and flavor that is preferred.
Again if the drink is preferred chilled or cold an iced version of the flavored coffee drinks is made with chilled cold milk instead of it being steamed this then makes a delicious cold drink which is great to have during the summer months.
This now gives you a basic idea of what is in these coffee drinks, you have to try one that you haven’t tasted yet, and its quite possible that you may find a new favorite, although there are new ones are being introduced all the time!
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