Espresso is a shot of coffee that is consumed as it comes and shouldn’t really have anything else added to it. It is made by forcing very hot water through finely ground coffee beans and is an intense pure coffee shot. The espresso then often becomes the base for other coffee drinks such as latte, cappuccino and mocha. It has grown in popularity since the 1980s in Europe and America, and more recently the Middle East.
Ristretto is typically made using the amount of ground coffee that would be used for a double shot of espresso, but with only the amount of water for a single shot. This results in a more concentrated drink as the coffee oils have been in contact with the water for a shorter amount of time and this in turn creates a less bitter taste.
Cappuccino is made with a shot of espresso and hot milk, and topped with foamed milk and sometimes a sprinkling of cocoa powder. It’s all about thirds, a third of coffee, a third of steamed milk and a third frothy milk. The first cappuccino drinks were invented in the 1700s in Vienna but cappuccino didn’t really rise in popularity in other countries until the 1950s.
The term caffé latte translates to ‘milk coffee’ and it is believed the latte was first developed in the 1800s. Latte is made with a shot of espresso and steamed milk, and is milkier than other coffee drinks. Latte can be served hot or as an iced drink.
A flat white is a small drink made using a double shot of espresso and topped with a microfoam, very foamy/silky milk. It was formulated in Australia and New Zealand in the 1980s, although more recently large coffee shop chains have started to offer it on the menu in other parts of the world.
An Americano is a single or double shot of espresso diluted with hot water. Caffé Americano translates to ‘American coffee’ and it is believed it was first developed by American soldiers who would water down their coffee during the Second World War.
Also known as moccaccino, mocha is made with a shot of espresso, hot milk and chocolate flavouring, usually in the form of cocoa powder. It was invented in the mid-19th century when Americans started adding chocolate to their coffee. It can be made using white, milk or dark chocolate and some like to top with whipped cream.
The word macchiato is Italian for ‘marked’ and there are two types of macchiato cofffe: latte macchiato and caffé macchiato. Latte macchiato is frothy milk ‘marked’ with a small amount of espresso, and caffé macchiato is a shot of espresso ‘marked’ with a small amount of milk.
Café noisette is almost French variation of the Macchiato, where the preparing of coffee involves adding a small amount of cream to a shot of espresso. Noisette means ‘hazelnut’ in French and refers to the colour the coffee turns with the addition of the cream. In some cafes in France, hazelnut milk is used instead of cream, giving the coffee a mild nutty flavour.