Drinking coffee may be considered a habit, but to many it is almost like an addiction. We just can’t seem to get our brains working in the morning without a good cup ‘o joe! When that deep robust flavor hits our palettes, our juices begin to flow, our brains begin to wake and our bodies are ready to take on the day.
Over the years this marvelous beverage has grown in popularity and has been developed into a variety of flavors. The way coffee is prepared has grown and developed over the years, as well. The most popular types of coffee include the standard brewed coffee from a drip coffee maker, Espresso, Cappuccino, Americano, Caffe Latte, Turkish Coffee and Macchiato.
A true coffee aficionado may have tried all of the different types and may even be able to tell you exactly where the bean was grown and how it was roasted. But, most of us get used to a certain type and never try anything different.
Once you learn more about the popular types of coffee available, you may just be tempted to broaden your horizons and give them a try!
Brewed coffee made in a drip coffee maker is one of the most popular types. One of the reasons is because the ground coffee is inexpensive to buy and the coffee makers used to brew the beverage are also very inexpensive.
You simply put the coffee grounds in the basket (with or without a filter, depending on your machine) add water and turn on the coffee maker. The coffee maker heats the water and slowly drips it through the grounds to release all of the rich coffee flavor. How quickly the water heats and drips also depends on your machine. On average, it takes about five minutes to brew a pot of coffee.
Many coffee makers can be pre-programmed to begin brewing at a certain time. This is extremely useful for those of us that can’t function at all until after our first brew!
Here are the top 3 best drip coffee makers:
Espresso is a true “power jolt” of energy – just like the name suggests. Espresso means “express” in Italian. To make this type of coffee, a small amount of water, brought almost to the boiling point, is forced under pressure through finely ground coffee beans.
The ratio of water to ground coffee is much less than with typical brewed coffee, making espresso much thicker. This is due to the higher concentration of dissolved and suspended solids, which also increases the concentration of caffeine. A distinctive characteristic of espresso is the foamy cream-like topping!
The creation of espresso coffee is generally attributed to Angelo Moriondo who, in 1884, patented a steam-driven “instant” coffee making device. The machine was touted as “an Italian bar machine.” This early invention might have been quite unique for its time, but it didn’t brew individual cups like the machines of today.
Many improvements were made to the design over the years. Additionally, many other types of coffees were invented based on the idea of the espresso machine and the unique coffee it produced. For example, cappuccino is basically an espresso with milk or cream. Other popular types of coffee used espresso as the base to develop other flavors.
Because espresso machines were very expensive at the time, coffee shops began popping up all over the place. Coffee bars (cafés) became almost as popular as bars that served alcohol! Aside from the expense of the machines, operating an espresso machine was also a big factor. Today, home espresso machines are available that anyone can afford and operate, but at first, you had to be a highly trained barista to make a good espresso.
Although cappuccino is an immensely popular drink in the western world today, it began as an Italian coffee beverage. It was traditionally prepared using espresso, hot milk and hot steamed milk foam. As a derivative of espresso, this popular beverage was basically created to cater to people that liked cream in their coffee.
Cappuccino is named after the Capuchin friars, known as such because of the color of their habits. Apparently, they preferred cream with their coffee. It is believed that until this time, coffee was always served black.
People of Vienna named the drink Kapuziner in the 19th century. Their version of the hot beverage used whipped cream which, according to historical records, the Italians found too heavy.
Cafè Americano (also known as Americano or American coffee) is basically hot water added to espresso. Although many of us think we want a good jolt of caffeine to start our day, espresso can be too powerful. By adding a good shot of hot water, the full espresso flavor is preserved, but at a diluted dose of caffeine.
An Americano has about the some level of caffeine as the drip coffee you get from your home coffee maker, but has the full bodied flavor of an espresso from the local café. Whether you make it at home with your own espresso machine, or buy it at your local café, you can decide the strength – espresso to water ratio.
However, be careful when ordering from a café – if you add water to the espresso (espresso on the bottom), it is an Americano, BUT, if you add espresso to the hot water (putting the espresso on top), it is known as a long black.
5. Caffè Latte
Caffé latte is a superb beverage based on the flavor of coffee. It is basically an espresso with steamed milk. This special coffee consists of 1/3rd espresso, 2/3rds hot or steamed milk and approximately 1cm of luscious foam. The skill of the barista determines how the top of your latte will look. He can create all sorts of fascinating art work with the foam. The most common pictures created are ferns, swirls and hearts, but if the barista isn’t too busy, you may be able to order a unique design created especially for you.
6. Turkish Coffee
Turkish coffee has nothing to do with where the beans were grown or processed. It is a term that refers to the method of preparing the brew. Roasted and then finely ground coffee beans are boiled in a special pot known as a cezve, commonly with sugar, and then poured into serving cups. The grounds are allowed to settle in the cups. Serving coffee this way is is quite common in the Middle East, the Caucasus, North Africa, Bali, the Balkans and various other locations throughout Eastern Europe.
7. Caffè Macchiato
Caffè macchiato, often referred to as espresso macchiato, is also espresso with a twist. The espresso is served with a small drop of milk, today the milk added is usually foamed first. Macchiato is the Italian word for “spotted” or “stained.” Therefore, literally translated, caffè macchiato is coffee with a spot of milk, or “stained” coffee.
Macchiato is served hot or cold, whichever you prefer. Another version is latte macchiato, which means milk with a spot of espresso, rather than espresso with a spot of milk. This version is very similar to a caffé latte.
Why not give one of these fabulous popular types of coffee a try? You just might find a new favorite!