Choosing the perfect coffee can be simple or tricky depending on your knowledge. Forget taste for a moment. Time of day, desired caffeine content, and even the weather can play a role before you even ask ‘what is a latte?’.
Nevertheless, once you understand the differences between coffees then it becomes a much easier task.
That’s where we come in. By the time you’ve finished reading this post, you’ll know if a latte is a good choice for you.
The great thing about a latte is that it’s a really simple coffee. It’s one of many espresso-based coffees that are enjoyed by millions of people every day.
An espresso is a strong coffee that is brewed under high pressure. A small amount of near-boiling water is forced through finely ground, tightly packed coffee beans.
This brewing method produces a high concentrated, strong shot of coffee.
An espresso can be served on its own. You have likely seen people drinking espresso coffees from very small cups or takeaway containers.
An espresso is ideal if you enjoy strongly flavoured coffees. It’s also a good option if you’d like quick caffeine hit but don’t want to drink a lot of liquid.
But why are we talking about espresso? Well, espresso is the foundation for many other coffees. Some examples of espresso-based coffees include:
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- High quality aluminum with double turns.
The differences between these coffees are that other ingredients are added to the espresso and in varying quantities.
What Is a Latte?
A latte is an espresso-based coffee with added milk.
The shortened name ‘latte’ was taken from the Italian drink ‘caffè latte’, which translates to ‘milk coffee’.
Therefore, if you were to order just a ‘latte’ in Italy, you would be asking for a glass of milk. Nevertheless, you shouldn’t have this problem anywhere else.
The ratios of a modern latte consist of roughly 1/6 espresso, 4/6 steamed milk, and 1/6 foamed milk.
However, can also ask for flavoured syrups to be added to your drink, creating a sweeter coffee. Some examples include caramel, vanilla, and hazelnut.
Ultimately, a latte is a milky coffee with a velvety texture. Although it packs the same caffeine punch as a normal espresso, the addition of lots of steamed milk makes it a creamier, less intense coffee.
How To Make a Latte
To make a modern latte, you start with a shot of espresso. You can opt for a double shot if you prefer.
Milk is then steamed to increase its temperature. Furthermore, this process creates a small layer of microfoam on top of the milk.
- An exquisite, well-rounded coffee.
- Strong roasted notes, an intense, spicy flavour and a low acidity.
- Intensity rating: 4/5.
As the steamed milk is poured on top of the shot of espresso, the liquid milk combines with the espresso shot, allowing the microfoam to rest on top.
A trained barista will usually pour the steamed milk in a way that creates a pattern or shape on top of the foam. This is often referred to as latte art.
What Is an Iced Latte?
An iced latte can be served in a variety of ways. As with its hot counterpart, a shot or two of espresso is the foundation of the drink.
Chilled milk is then combined with the espresso and served over ice. The drink can also be blended to create a thick and creamy slushy consistency.
As with the hot version of the drink, an iced latte can have a variety of flavoured syrups added to it to create a sweeter drink.
When To Drink
The latte is a popular coffee because its mild, milky flavour makes it appealing to a large audience.
It’s the perfect option at any time of the day if you’re looking for the caffeine buzz of espresso but want a much less intense flavour.
The addition of flavoured syrups make it a treat when you’re desperate for a feel-good pick-me-up and it’s so versatile that coffee shops often have limited edition flavours to try.
- Adjustable to exact desired coarseness.
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- Great to use at home and on camping trips.
In truth, the latte is a suitable drink for all coffee lovers. It doesn’t pack a punch in the intense coffee flavour department, but it serves us well as an all-rounder.
Whichever coffee you prefer, enjoy. You’ve earned it.