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Different coffees at shops

By: Jamie Ortbal, Staff Writer

As the temperature drops and people get more and more into the holiday season, coffee shops across the country get more and more busy.  Most people who come in for a holiday treat are unaware of the different types of drinks that coffee shops offer.  Below are explanations of the most traditional drinks that you’ll find at a coffee shop.    

Espresso:  Espresso is very concentrated black coffee that is made by forcing steam through ground coffee beans.  Espresso is found in all traditional coffee shop beverages, but can also be ordered on its own.  Espresso is most often ordered regularly caffeinated, but can also be order decaffeinated.   

Latte:  A latte consists of espresso and steamed milk and is one is the most basic coffee shop beverages that a person can order.  Syrups can be added to a latte in order to give the beverage more flavour.    

Mocha: A mocha is very similar to a latte.  It is also made with espresso and steamed milk, but in a mocha, chocolate is added to the espresso shot.  Mochas usually come with whipped cream on top as well.   

Macchiato:  A macchiato, also known as a latte macchiato, is essentially an upside down latte.  The word macchiato actually means upside down.  In a latte, the espresso goes in the cup first and the milk is poured on top, which is how latte art is made.  However, in a macchiato, the steamed milk goes in first and the espresso is poured on top.  Most people are more familiar with the caramel macchiato, which is essentially the same thing as a traditional macchiato with caramel and vanilla added to the espresso.   

Americano: An americano is very similar to a traditional cup of plain black coffee.  A traditional cup of coffee consists of hot water slowly filtered through ground coffee beans, while an americano consists of espresso poured over a cup of hot water.  

Cafe au Lait: Cafe au Lait literally translates to “coffee with milk.”  Steamed milk is poured over a cup of coffee in a two thirds to one thirds ratio.  

Frappucino: Not to be confused with a cappuccino, a frappuccino is a blended ice beverage that has the consistency of a milkshake.  It often has whipped cream on top.  The term “frappuccino” is a trademark of Starbucks, but many other coffee shops have similar beverages that have different names.   
With these explanations, hopefully you’ll be able to confidently order the next time you treat yourself to a holiday coffee.