What is a Latte?

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Jason Coffee


What is a Latte?


A Cafe Latte is comprised of Milk and Espresso (which are the basic building blocks to every espresso drink.).

Two things, amongst others, that will make or break a Latte are:

1) The Quality of the Espresso

The quality of the beans themselves is no doubt a huge factor but equally as important is how they are pulled. It is very important to note that if an espresso shot is pulled too long or too short it will negatively effect the flavor of the Cafe Latte.

2) The Steamed Milk

The most obvious clue that your latte was made by an inexperience barista is huge bubbles in your latte. A cafe latte, or any other espresso drink, should be contain micro film/bubbles. These will enhance the flavor of your drink by adding sweetness. The type of milk used is also a huge factor. In my opinion whole milk does the best job of accentuating the flavor of the espresso and makes for a more creamy beverage.

A latte, unlike an espresso macchiato or a cappuccino which use less milk, is made up of a higher ratio of milk to espresso. Latte’s ratios differ but a good middle ground is a 4:1 ratio of milk to espresso. The milk to espresso ratio will differ from cafe to cafe depending on the quality of espresso and cliental of that particular coffee shop.

Do you drink Lattes or Mochas? What is your favorite place to get one?

picture by cairnsdining

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  1. Malebogo Molateng

    A latte is 2/3 steamed milk & 1/3 espresso, topped with just a dollop of milk foam

    Most people dont know how to properly foam milk, but when its done right its oh so good!

  2. Coffeestork

    I usually think that frogged milk inlattes is more wet than in cappuccinos. Meaning that more aire is incorporated in cappuccinos drinks, although always microfoam

    • Jason Coffee

      From an ultra technical standpoint (aka Italian language) that may be true but from an english language standpoint Latte is defined by Webster as Cafe Latte and by dictionary.com as 1. hot espresso with steamed milk, usually topped with foamed milk. Also in our culture I almost never hear someone refer to a Latte as a Cafe Latte, unless they are reading it off the menu for the first time. Thanks for stopping by and commenting!