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A Quick Guide to Speciality Coffees


Have you ever heard someone order a macchiato or ristretto in the coffee shop queue and wondered what it was? Don't know a doppio from a mocha? Never fear, help is at hand with our quick guide to speciality coffees below.

All speciality coffees can be made from a standard espresso machine.

Espresso - The base from which all speciality coffees are made - Hot water is forced through finely ground coffee to produce a maximum of 1 to 1.5 fluid ounces of beverage.

Crema – Thus is the golden head of the espresso, which is made of the oils extracted from the coffee during the brewing process.

Doppio - A double shot of espresso. (doppio is Italian for double)

Espresso Con Panna - A shot of espresso topped with whipped cream.

Romano - Espresso served with a twist or slice of lemon.

Ristretto - A restricted or short shot of espresso for an intense espresso taste.

Macchiato - Espresso with a small amount of steamed milk dappled on top to give a spotted effect.

Cappuccino - One shot of espresso, one part steamed milk, one part foamed milk with an optional dusting of chocolate or cinnamon.

Mocha - Cappuccino with a shot of chocolate sauce or syrup.

Americano - A standard sized cup of coffee made by dispensing a double espresso into hot water. Add milk to taste.

Latte - One shot of espresso mixed with steamed milk.

Skinny - A term used before all coffee drinks containing milk e.g. Skinny Latte - Means served with low fat skimmed milk.

With Wings - A term used to ask for a take-away drink e.g. a cappuccino with wings (originates from the early take-out paper cups which had folding paper handles resembling wings)

Lungo - Meaning 'long' in Italian e.g. Espresso Lungo, a long espresso with more hot water.

Corretto - Means 'corrected' or laced with an alcoholic spirit or liqueur.

Dry - A cappuccino with no steamed milk - just foamed milk.

Flavoured - A latte or cappuccino with a dash of flavoured syrup added such as vanilla, hazelnut, mint, almond or many others.

As you can see, many of the terms originate from Italy, where the first espresso coffee machine was patented in 1938 by Achille Gaggia. The Gaggia name has been synonymous with quality traditional espresso coffee machines ever since.

Spend a few moments familiarising yourself with these terms, and then next time you glance at the coffee shop menu board you will know exactly what to order.
For more information about coffee and coffee making equipment visit http://www.cafebar.co.uk