We love espresso coffee, but what exactly is it and how is it prepared? It is quite simple, espresso is a very fine ground coffee, through which a certain amount of water passes whose temperature is close to the boiling point.
This is considered a basic cafeteria because thanks to the coffee concentrate obtained, other beverages such as cappuccino or latte can be prepared. This does not mean that espresso is simply because to prepare it properly, there are several factors that must intervene.
The first step to achieve this is grinding. This must be fine so that the hot water – whose average temperature is 94 degrees Celsius although it can vary – pressurizes and extracts odors and flavors from the grain. If the ground is very thick, the product will be a “watery” drink, pale and tasteless.
Another important element is the espresso machine. Here the necessary pressure is generated so that the hot water passes through the ground grain with a pressure of between 5 and 15 bars – something as well as between 5 and 15 times the pressure that the atmosphere exerts on us at sea level.
The liquid passes through a filter, to avoid impurities in the coffee and finally deposit in the cup. The result is a cup where there are basically two parts: the so-called “cream”, derived from carbon dioxide bubbles, a thin foam of light color and liquid, dark and intense.
To obtain these two products, it is common to use the pump coffee maker, with which the pressure is generated. However, there are also coffee makers whose pressure is achieved with steam or, as you have probably seen on occasion, with a lever, which when used drives a plunger and pushes hot water through the filter.
This, incidentally, would never have been possible without Angelo Moriondo, an Italian businessman who designed this machine in 1884.
The objective of its creation was to quickly prepare coffee for the hurried customers who frequented two of their businesses: the Gran Hotel Liguria and the American Bar.
Terms Associated with Espresso Coffee
Before you become an espresso expert, you need to understand certain terms that are usually associated with this type of coffee. Learning more about espresso and certain definitions will help you make better decisions about how to buy an espresso machine for professional or home use.
• Barista: This Italian term means a person with professional skills and experience, especially when it comes to coffee and its production. The barista also dedicated to making the preparation of latte art. There are currently many barista courses that can help you train.
• Body: The coffee body refers to the richness, thickness, and overall texture, as well as the aroma, acidity, flavor, and strength of espresso coffee.
• Mill or crusher: A disc mill is essentially a mill designed especially for coffee beans. The blade used to crush grains is to maximize flavor extraction.
• Cream: This term is also commonly used when referring to espresso coffee and describes the brown foam on the surface of freshly brewed espresso coffee.
• Foam: A notable feature of espresso coffee drinks is that milk is vaporized and has an ideal consistency that can be poured, but not properly shaped like a foam. We recommend you also read: Arte latte
• Hopper: This is a part that is included in every coffee mill or coffee maker. It is the compartment that contains the grains that are ground and is often preferred by most consumers who have a large capacity.
• Shot: In terms of espresso, a shot usually equals one ounce of very potent coffee.
Some of the most popular espresso varieties are:
• Cappuccino: This type of coffee is very popular, it is served with a shot of espresso, covered with foam and hot milk.
• Café au Lait: It is a coffee with milk, is made with a part of coffee, and two parts of hot milk. It has a slightly less daring flavor than other varieties.
• Latte: This variety is similar to Café au Lait, but this particular drink uses a triple dose of hot milk and is topped with foam.
• American: Another popular espresso variety is what is commonly called Cafe Americano, and it is a coffee made with hot water.
• Macchiato: This is a stronger espresso drink compared to other varieties and is made with espresso and a small amount of foam. We recommend you visit: Most popular types of coffee to learn more.
“WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN A SINGLE COFFEE AND AN ESPRESSO A COFFEE ALONE OR AN ESPRESSO THAT I ASK IN THE CAFETERIA, ARE THEY THE SAME? IF NOT, WHAT AM I ASKING FOR IN EACH CASE?”
To the first question, they are not the same, coffee is only one thing and espresso coffee is another since they are terms that refer to two different classifications of coffee.
A coffee would only be that coffee to which nothing is added to the coffee cup, simply water, and the coffee-infused in the water that has been used in the extraction. Coffee is therefore only a coffee that does not have added any other product other than the water used in the extraction of coffee.
Therefore when you order an espresso you are ordering a coffee made in a very particular type of coffee maker that is the espresso coffee maker.
The coffee with milk, the cut, or the only one is the three most popular variants in Spain to request an espresso machine. But there are many other variants by country, some of them are even easy to find here, such as cappuccino, or others are reserved for hot periods such as ice coffee, etc.
Summarizing coffee only refers to the type of coffee mixed with other products, or rather, the absence of this mixture. While espresso coffee refers to the coffee machine where we prepare coffee.
WHY THEN IS THIS CONFUSION OF TERMS BETWEEN BLACK COFFEE AND ESPRESSO?
Actually, it is because when we ask for coffee consciously or unconsciously we tend to save words, an issue we do in many areas of our lives, and if we are a cafeteria in southern Europe we can order a coffee only with almost the total guarantee that They are going to bring us espresso only.
The same happens when we ask for an espresso, if we do not specify that it is, with milk, cut, cappuccino, etc., almost certainly they will bring us a coffee alone. It is more often the waiter or barista will ask if you want it just to ensure you are not wrong with the coffee you really want.
To order a coffee only in other countries such as the Nordics, the United Kingdom, or the United States you have to be more careful when ordering your coffee whenever you want your coffee to be an espresso-only. You may find the surprise that your coffee alone is not made with an espresso machine.
It is possible that your coffee is made by filtering in a drip coffee maker, not by pressure, either in an electric coffee maker that here in Europ proliferates in offices, or that it is made by some other manual filter coffee system, such as the coffee maker Chemex, which may be the best known in Europe, or with a simple plastic or glass cone is placed on top of the cup, along with a paper that serves as a filter to put the coffee, pouring on it at approximately 90 degrees, never boiling water.
Here coffee is obtained by the action of gravity, drip coffees are made up of water and coffee extract, which then accumulate inside a coffee collection receptacle, the same cup of coffee on some occasions, or a jug to serve coffee in others, which are placed or are already incorporated immediately below the drip.
The interesting thing about these methods is that they allow us to enjoy a lighter coffee, where they highlight more clearly a range of aromas and flavors that we do not commonly associate with coffee: fruity and floral, mainly sweet and fruity notes.
A much lighter body infusion, which means enjoying a longer drink.
Other ways in which you can serve a coffee is only through a French press coffee maker, which are those in which you press a plunger, on a coffee mixture to which you add water, mixes, let stand a few minutes and press a plunger so that separate the coffee already infused with the infusion of water and coffee that you are going to consume.