Some will always argue that anything other than the traditional espresso is an affront to good coffee. These days however, more people than ever before are experimenting with all manner of different types of espresso coffee, creating weird and wonderful concoctions to suit all tastes.
The question being – where to start?
If looking to enjoy espresso coffee from a slightly different angle, you need only look at how they do things overseas. Standard espresso is incredibly popular worldwide, but there are also plenty of regional variants that are definitely worth checking out.
Some of which are surprisingly easy to make, so feel free to give any of the following a go this weekend:
This is the kind of decadent treat that’s less than a traditional coffee and more a desert. Simply pour a shot of high quality espresso over your favourite vanilla ice cream in a suitable container and melt into the sheer bliss.
Known locally as a caffe breve, this is where a cappuccino is made with 50% of the milk being replaced by with a single cream. Needless to say, the resulting cappuccino-type-beverage is unbelievably rich and enjoyable, if you like things a little on the heavy side.
Speaking of which, take a shot of quality espresso, a shot of steamed milk and a shot of whipped cream and you have yourself a traditional cafe viennois. Easy to make and delicious, a good Viennese coffee is also a rather attractive work of art.
Anyone with a particularly sweet tooth is guaranteed to get a kick out of the cafe Cubano. Sweet in the extreme, the cafe Cubano is made by placing one or two teaspoons of sugar in a cup, after which one or two shots of espresso coffee are poured over the sweet stuff and served either black or with a cup of steamed milk. Not the best coffee for those trying to lose weight, but an enjoyable occasional treat nonetheless.
This is basically the Portuguese version of the standard latte, which combines three parts steamed milk with one part espresso coffee. The only difference being that the milk is usually heated in a saucepan, during which time an undeniably generous amount of sugar is dissolved into it. The sugar is optional, but in its absence you can’t really call it a galao.
The long black is the Australian interpretation of the Americano – the only difference being that the espresso coffee is added to the hot water, instead of the other way around. Ratios vary wildly, in accordance with how strong the recipient enjoys their java.
Last but not least, this ‘restricted’ version of an espresso uses the same amount of coffee but with significantly less water. The resulting shot being just about as strong and heavy as it gets. Great enjoyed on its own, or used as a base for other drink recipes.
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