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Popular Types of Coffee Drinks
Affogato: An espresso drink with a scoop of ice cream inside.
Americano: Hot water topped with an espresso.
Cafe au Lait: Strong coffee usually made from filter coffee or a cafetier and mixed with equal parts steamed milk and poured at the same time into the cup.
Caffe Latte: Espresso topped with stretched velvety milk.
Cappuccino: An espresso mixed with equal parts of steamed and frothed milk (1/3 espresso, 1/3 steamed milk and 1/3 froth milk).
Doppio: Italian for double and usually used for ordering a double espresso. The base for just about all other drinks listed here. A 45ml single shot of about 7g of coffee made in about 18-22 seconds, resulting in dark coffee with crema on top.
Espresso Con Panna: An espresso topped with whipped cream.
Flat White: Originally an Australian version of a Latte but with less froth, and usually with two shots of coffee in a 6oz or 7oz cup.
Frappuccino: An iced cappuccino.
Latte Macchiato: Macchiato means a mark or stain. Both steamed and frothed milk is poured in first, then the coffee goes in last leaving a stain or mark. Also known as a layered latte and served in a glass.
Macchiato: Also known as espresso macchiato. This time the mark is milk on top of a single espresso.
Mocha: Also known as Caffe Mocha – a cappuccino with an added shot of chocolate.
Ristretto: Shorter than an espresso but witht the same amount of coffee. About two thirds of an espresso and a little sweeter in taste.
Skinny Latte: A latte made with low fat and non-fat milk.
Belly Jug: Also known as the CAPPUCCINO JUG. Due to its larger rounder bottom, this is where the ‘BELLY’ name comes from. As the Cappuccino consists of a large amount of froth, the rounder BELLY JUG with its FAT LIP is great for helping pour the micro bubble foam successfully in to the cup without it getting stuck in the bottom of the jug. The wider lip makes it easier for the foam to fall out of the jug. A wiggle of the wrist can also help this further.
Doser: The DOSER is the chamber at the front of the grinder that the ground coffee drops in to as it is ground. It contains what can be described as TRIANGULAR type COMPARTMENTS/SEGMENTS which measure the coffee for you before it goes in to the group handle. For example, when ONE of the TRIANGULAR COMPARTMENTS is full to the brim with ground coffee, this is equal to one SINGLE SHOT of espresso, which is ONE PULL of the handle on your grinder. TWO full TRIANGULAR COMPARTMENTS are equal to a DOUBLE SHOT of espresso – TWO PULLS of the handle on your grinder.
The dull COMPARTMENTS have to be at the front of the chamber where the coffee drops down in to the group handle to get the full measure.
Extraction: This is the process when the water pushes through the coffee at the push of the button, the end result being the espresso. The perfect extraction should take place within 18-22 SECONDS. As the water pushes through the ground coffee, it absorbs all of the goodness from the oils within the coffee, which gives the espresso its full FLAVOUR and AROMA. It should also have a thick CREMA/HEAD sitting on the top with no black coffee coming through. It should look like a mini Guinness as it settles, the thick layer of CREMA similar to the creamy head of a Guinness. You never see any black beer coming through the creamy head of the Guinness and it is the same principal with the espresso. This is the perfect extraction.
Filter Basket/ Pod Filter: This is a hollow round metal disc with holes in the base which sits in the GROUP HANDLE. You would distribute the coffee from the grinder in to the FILTER BASKET, which are typically available in double shot or single shot measures to fit the group handle and to co-inside with the dosage from the grinder.
Frothing: When frothing milk to create micro foam, a technique called STRETCHING is used which involves letting air in to your milk by repeatedly lifting the STEAM ARM/WAND/TUBE just slightly in and out of the surface of the milk creating a spitting sound as the nozzle comes out of the milk. This small action pumps air in to the milk, STRETCHING the liquid with micro air bubbles, which causes the milk to grow or expand known as VOLUMIZING the milk. The spitting sound is key to pumping air in to your milk. When you see layer of foam appearing, you can create even more foam by letting the nozzle just rest on the surface of the foam, increasing the spitting sound, producing even more foam. A good barista can tell by EAR what type of drink is being made and the quality of the end beverage just by listening to the sounds of the steam arm being worked in the milk.
Glossing / Polishing: Once you have frothed and steamed your milk depending on the drink you are making GLOSSING or POLISHING is the process of swirling the milk around the jug against a hard surface, which causes the milk to take on a silky smooth glossy type finish. The foam appears meringue like and the milk becomes super silky creamy smooth. This more appetising look appears ‘polished’ and shiny.
Group Handles (also known as Portafilters): These hold the FILTER BASKETS and are typically available for making single or double shot espressos. The handles make it easy for the barista to slot and screw the FILTER BASKET in to the group head, ready for the brewing process and ultimately the extraction of the espresso.
Group Heads: These are the metal circular parts on the coffee machine that appear to be attached to the ceiling of the machine, where the group handles slot and screw in to. The group heads are part of the brewer, where the coffee is brewed. Water comes through a SHOWER PLATE in the ceiling of the group head and penetrates through the coffee.
Hopper: This is the large plastic/metal funnel shaped container that sits on top of the grinder holding the coffee beans. Coffee beans should not be kept in the hopper any longer than 3-4 days. After this period they turn stale. The reason for this, is that everything we love about coffee comes from the oils within the beans giving us the TASTE, AROMA, FLAVOUR and CREMA we have grown to love so much as a nation. After a few days, the oxygen in the atmosphere dries the beans out, the oils evaporating in to the air, hence drawing out all the goodness from the beans and leaving you with a stale bean.
Latte Jug: Due to lattes not being as frothy as Cappuccinos they do not require a ‘fat lipped’ jug. The narrower spout allows for the perfect pour of the steamed milk in to the glass, enabling just the right amount of creamy foam to be distributed on top. The spout is also perfect for free pouring latte art in order to create patterns and pictures with the white of the milk in to the dark of the espresso crema.
Micro Foam: This is the special kind of foam used by baristas in cappuccinos and lattes. It does not look like foam as the bubbles are so very small. It is very soft in comparison to regular foam and has a slight sheen to it which can be enhanced by glossing. It is a stiffer, stronger long lasting foam that holds its shape, so when sprinkling chocolate on your cappuccino the foam does not instantly sink and disintegrate under the pressure. A good way to describe it is like meringue – when whisking the egg whites in to a stiff shiny mixture. This is a similar look to that of MICRO FOAM.
Over Extraction: This can be due to too much coffee being in the group handle or the grind being too fine. The water struggles to make its way through the coffee, ending with a short shot of espresso, a few drips of espresso or even nothing at all in the cup. There will be little or no crema and the flavour and aroma will be burnt and bitter tasting.
Purging: Once you have finished frothing/steaming the milk, it is important that you wipe the STEAM ARM/WAND/TUBE with a damp cloth before the milk dries on. It is also important to PURGE the steam ARM, by quickly turning it on and off, allowing some steam to escape in to the air. This releases any milk trapped on the inside of the steam ARM before it dries up on the inside. The steam ARM gets hot and becomes a breeding ground for bacteria which is why it is important to follow this purging/wiping process.
Steaming: This is the process of using the STEAM ARM/WAND/TUBE to heat the milk. It is less dense than frothed but may still have a bit of foam on top. To heat the milk evenly, the key is to make the milk spin in the jug. STEAMING is used to create latte milk Tamping Once the GROUP HANDLE has been filled with a shot of coffee from the grinder, it needs to be TAMPED down firmly and strongly with a TAMP. This involves using your body weight to push down and compress the coffee firmly and evenly in the group handle, enabling an even extraction of water through the coffee and ultimately providing the best espresso. There is usually a plastic TAMPER attached to the front of the grinder or you can use a detached metal TAMPER.
Under Extraction: This can be due to not enough coffee being in the group handle or the grind being too coarse. The water gushes through the coffee, coming out far too quickly, resulting in a very weak and watery flavoured espresso, again with little or no cream and little aroma.