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Types of Coffee Drinks

Types of Coffee Drinks

Last updated on 9/14/2021

If you have ever been to a cafe or coffee shop, you know the drink menu is often overwhelming. As a coffee shop owner, there are so many types of coffee drinks you can offer your customers that it's difficult to understand the difference between them. We explored the most popular coffee drinks and their recipes so you can get familiar with them and keep up with current coffee trends. Click the following link to check out our printable coffee drinks chart.


Use these links to jump ahead and find out how your favorite coffee drink is made.
  1. Espresso
  2. Double Espresso
  3. Red Eye
  4. Black Eye
  5. Americano
  6. Long Black
  7. Macchiato
  8. Long Macchiato
  9. Cortado
  10. Breve
  11. Cappuccino
  12. Flat White
  13. Cafe Latte
  14. Mocha
  15. Vienna
  16. Affogato
  17. Cafe au Lait
  18. Iced Coffee

Brewing Styles Compared

Not all coffee is brewed in the same way. Different brewing styles can cause changes in the flavor and strength of the drink. Here are just a few brewing styles that you may incorporate in your shop:

  • Drip Brew
    Ground coffee is added to a brew basket and placed in an automatic coffee machine for this brewing style. Gravity is used to pass water through the grounds, resulting in a traditional cup of coffee.
  • Pour Over
    This brewing style is achieved by pouring boiling water slowly through coffee grounds as they sit in a filter basket. The coffee then drips into a single cup, resulting in a potent brew.
  • Cold Brew
    For cold brew, coarsely ground coffee is placed in room temperature water and allowed to steep for an extended period of time. This results in a less bitter, highly caffeinated brew.
  • Espresso
    To achieve an espresso brew, you'll need an espresso or cappuccino machine. These machines pass pressurized hot water through a filter containing dark roasted finely ground coffee beans. The force of the water produces a highly concentrated coffee shot. This is the method most commonly used for the base of coffee drinks.
  • Ristretto
    Brewed in a similar method to the espresso, pressurized water is passed through the coffee grounds. However, you would use half the amount of water. The shorter brewing cycle creates a more concentrated and darker shot of espresso.

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Different Coffee Drinks

Most types of coffee drinks comprise three common ingredients: espresso, steamed milk, and foam. Additional toppings can be added to each coffee type based on your customers’ unique preferences. The following are just some of the coffee drink definitions and possible cup pairings you may consider adding to your coffee shop menu. It’s important to note that drink ratios may vary from coffee shop to coffee shop.

Espresso Shot

Espresso

The espresso, also known as a short black, is approximately 1 oz. of highly concentrated coffee. Although simple in appearance, it can be difficult to master.


Double Espresso

Double Espresso

A double espresso may also be listed as doppio, which is the Italian word for double. This drink is highly concentrated and strong.


Red Eye Coffee

Red Eye

The red eye's purpose is to add a boost of caffeine to your standard cup of coffee.


Black Eye Coffee

Black Eye

The black eye is just the doubled version of the red eye and is very high in caffeine.

  • Ratio: 2 shots of espresso + 6 oz. of drip-brewed coffee
  • Cup: 8-10 oz. Coffee Mug

Americano

Americano

Americanos are popular breakfast drinks and thought to have originated during World War II. Soldiers would add water to their coffee to extend their rations farther. The water dilutes the espresso while still maintaining a high level of caffeine.


Long Black

Long Black

The long black is a similar coffee drink to the americano, but it originated in New Zealand and Australia. It generally has more crema than an americano.

  • Ratio: 2 shots of espresso + 3 oz. of hot water
  • Cup: 6-8 oz. Glass Coffee Mug
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Macchiato

Macchiato

The word macchiato means mark or stain. This is in reference to the mark that steamed milk leaves on the surface of the espresso as it is dashed into the drink. Flavoring syrups are often added to the drink according to customer preference.

  • Ratio: 1 shot of espresso + 1 to 2 teaspoons of steamed milk
  • Cup: 3 oz. Glass Espresso Cup

Long Macchiato

Long Macchiato

Often confused with a standard macchiato, the long macchiato is a taller version and will usually be identifiable by its distinct layers of coffee and steamed milk.

  • Ratio: 2 shots of espresso + 2 to 4 teaspoons of steamed milk
  • Cup: 5 oz. Rocks Glass

Cortado

Cortado

The cortado takes the macchiato one step further by evenly balancing the espresso with warm milk in order to reduce the acidity.

  • Ratio: 1 shot of espresso + 1 oz. of warm milk + 1 cm of foam
  • Cup: 5 oz. Rocks Glass

Breve

Breve

The breve provides a decadent twist on the average espresso, adding steamed half-and-half to create a rich and creamy texture.

  • Ratio: 1 shot of espresso + 3 oz. of steamed half-and-half + 1 cm of foam
  • Cup: 5-7 oz. Low Cup

Cappuccino

Cappuccino

This creamy coffee drink is usually consumed at breakfast time in Italy and is loved in the United States as well. It is usually associated with indulgence and comfort because of its thick foam layer and additional flavorings that can be added to it.

  • Ratio: 1-2 shots of espresso + 2 oz. of steamed milk + 2 oz. of foamed milk + sprinkling of chocolate powder (optional)
  • Cup: 6-8 oz. Cappuccino Mug

Flat White

Flat White

A flat white also originates from New Zealand and Australia and is very similar to a cappuccino but lacks the foam layer and chocolate powder. To keep the drink creamy rather than frothy, steamed milk from the bottom of the jug is used instead of from the top.

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Cafe Latte

Cafe Latte

Cafe lattes are considered an introductory coffee drink since the acidity and bitterness of coffee are cut by the amount of milk in the beverage. Flavoring syrups are often added to the latte for those who enjoy sweeter drinks.


Mocha

Mocha

The mocha is considered a coffee and hot chocolate hybrid. The chocolate powder or syrup gives it a rich and creamy flavor and cuts the acidity of the espresso.

  • Ratio: 1 shot of espresso + 1-2 oz. of chocolate syrup/powder + 1-3 oz. of steamed milk + 2-3 cm of foam or whipped cream
  • Cup: 6-8 oz. Irish Coffee Mug

Vienna

Vienna

There are a few variations on the Vienna, but one of the most common is made with two ingredients: espresso and whipped cream. The whipped cream takes the place of milk and sugar to provide a creamy texture.

  • Ratio: 1-2 shots of espresso + 2 oz. of whipped cream
  • Cup: 4-5 oz. Espresso Mug

Affogato

Affogato

Affogatos are more for a dessert coffee than a drink you would find at a cafe, but they can add a fun twist to your coffee menu. They are made by pouring a shot of espresso over a scoop of vanilla ice cream to create a sweet after-meal treat.


Cafe au Lait

Cafe au Lait

The cafe au lait is typically made with French press coffee instead of an espresso shot to bring out the different flavors in the coffee. It is then paired with scalded milk instead of steamed milk and poured at a 50/50 ratio.


Iced Coffee

Iced Coffee

Iced coffees become very popular in the summertime in the United States. The recipes do have some variance, with some locations choosing to interchange milk with water in the recipe. Often, different flavoring syrups will be added per the preference of the customer.

  • Ratio: 2 oz. drip coffee or espresso + 4 oz. of ice + 4-6 oz of milk or water + flavoring syrup to taste
  • Cup: 14 oz. Mixing Glass
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Being familiar with different types of coffee drinks allows you to cater to even more customers and improve your coffee service. Providing this information where customers can see it can help them make confident decisions about their coffee order and properly kick start their day.


Coffee Drinks Chart

Types of Coffee Drinks Infographic Printable Version
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