Coffee terms to know: Your guide to espresso


It's all about the brew

Espresso doesn't take it's name from a type of bean, nor does it refer to an actual roast. It comes from the way coffee flavor is extracted from the beans with water.


Everything in thirds

One of the most popular coffee house requests, this drink is one-third espresso, one-third steamed milk and one-third frothy foam.

Café Latte

A little less foam

More popular than the cappuccino, but with less foam.

One-third espresso and two-thirds steamed milk, this espresso drink is topped off with a thin layer of foam.

Latte Macchiato

Reverse café latte

If you're expecting caramel or mocha, don't order this at a coffee house.

A true macchiato is two-thirds steamed milk and a mark (small amount) of espresso.

Flat White

Espresso with a microfoam

Forget what you know about the Flat White.

All you need to do for this drink, created by our Aussie friends, is pour a velvety shot of microfoam over a shot of espresso.

Cafe Americano

Just add water

While drip coffee is the norm in the U.S., Europeans have yet to embrace it. To satisfy Americans, they added a double shot of espresso atop four to six ounces of hot water.


A short shot

Espresso is good, but ristretto is better. Made the same as an espresso, except that it's either made with two-thirds of the water used for espresso or it's pulled two-thirds of the way into the brewing.


If you'd like to leave a comment (or a tip or a question) about this story with the editors, please email us. We also welcome letters to the editor for publication; you can do that by filling out our letters form and submitting it to the newsroom.

Powered by Creative Circle Media Solutions