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    Our top 10 Espresso drinks

    Espresso

    Who doesn't love shots? But this kind of shot is straight espresso, which most people find incredibly strong and bitter. It takes a while to develop the acquired taste for a straight espresso shot.

    One shot of espresso prepared with 7 grams of ground coffee in a single portafilter. The shot should be 1 ounce of liquid. You have two choices with espresso: ristretto, a very short or “restrained” shot, brewed at less than 2/3 of a demitasse, or luongo, a long pull of espresso brewed so the liquid should be more than 2/3 of a demitasse.

    Double Espresso

    Two shots of espresso prepared with 2 pods (14 grams) of ground coffee in a double portafilter. The double espresso shot should be about 1.5 ounces. A double espresso is a more concentrated shot with a thick, rich crema. It can still be made ristretto or luongo.

    Macchiato

    Single espresso with a touch of foam. Macchiato means spotted or stained; the espresso is “stained” with foam. This can be made as a single or a double.

    Way too much coffee. But if it weren't for the coffee, I'd have no identifiable personality whatsoever.

    - David Letterman

    Americano Iced or Hot

    This is espresso and water and is served iced or hot. The amount of water depends on your preference, but making an americano is rather simple.

    If you want to mix up your drink order on a hot day away from cold brew or iced coffee, but don't want to get too wild, then an americano is the drink for you. Fun fact: this drink is the reason I almost lost a hand. Gotta love accidentally pouring scalding hot water all over yourself. Yes, the life of a barista is life on the edge.

    To make an Americano, or Caffe Americano, pulling a single shot of espresso and then add about 6 ounces of hot water—the strength should be similar to drip filter coffee.

    Caffe Americano is the Italian way of serving espresso "American style", ordering a "caffe" in Italy is to order a shot of espresso. Add milk and/or sugar if desired.

    Cappuccino

    Cappuccinos are always served hot. (Please don't make an iced cappuccino. I beg you.) If you ask for an ice cappuccino at a bar you will definitely get a weird look from a barista and most likely get a comment along the lines of, "You mean an iced latte?"

    The key to this drink is that the milk is aerated so that there's some foam chilling on top of the steamed milk. This is my favorite drink because I love sipping on the sweet layer of foam that won't burn your tongue in the lovely way that hot coffee tends to do.

    Made in thirds — 1/3 espresso, 1/3 steamed milk, 1/3 foam. This is a very traditional way of making cappuccino. The milk should appear glassy, smooth, shiny and with no visible bubbles. The milk and foam should be blended or mixed to create a thick, creamy texture. La Colombe pulls double ristretto shots.

    Latte Iced or Hot

    If you haven't heard of a latte, you're either living under a rock or are way too much of a hipster for this crowd favorite. Iced or hot, the milk-to-espresso ratio is 4:1, so if you don’t like the bitter taste of espresso, this is the drink for you.

    1/3 espresso, 2/3 hot milk, thin layer of foam. A cafe latte should have the same glossy finish as the cappuccino. This is pulled with a double ristretto.

    Coffee smells like freshly ground heaven.

    - Jessi Lane Adams

    Cortado

    If you like strong espresso, but you're not on the "shots" level yet (it's okay, you'll get there), try a cortado. The milk-to-espresso ratio is about 1:1, and the milk is steamed so that there is little to no foam. Plus, you sound pretty dope ordering it if you have a good Spanish accent.

    1/2 espresso, 1/2 foam-infused milk. The perfect afternoon drink, or for that coffee drinker who wants something strong, but needs a little milk to soften the espresso as it goes down. This drink is in between a macchiato and a cafe latte. Pull a double ristretto into a gibraltar glass. The milk should have the consistency of a cafe latte and result in the same glassy, smooth, creamy texture as a cafe latte and cappuccino.

    Caffè Mocha

    1/3 espresso, 1/6 cocoa, 1/3 milk, 1/6 foam. Cocoa is the first layer, and then you pull the double espresso shot. Then steam the milk to the consistency of a cafe latte. La Colombe cafe mocha is unique because they use an unsweetened chocolate. Again, this drink is pulled with a double ristretto.

    Flat White

    The drink from down under. Think mini latte with a similar level of steam in your milk, with a milk-to-espresso ratio closer to 3:1. Yum, right? Perfect if you're looking for a latte but need to down it a little faster. Drink a flat white and be on your way.

    1/3 espresso, 2/3 steamed milk, super thin layer of micro-foam. This is what some call an “Australian latte”. Generally, it’s served in a 6- to 8-ounce cup and is meant to be enjoyed with the thinnest layer of foam possible. It is important to keep the ratio of milk to espresso appropriate so as not to overpower the espresso.

    Affogato

    Ice cream or gelato topped with a shot of espresso. My suggestion is to go for caramel or chocolate flavored ice cream because it tastes like a sweeter, dessert version of a flavored latte. In other words, it's a caffeinated dessert. I know, it doesn't get much better.

    Now, let me help you out with some fun facts and pro tips: matcha and chai lattes don't have espresso. They're actually just called lattes because they're mixed with milk in a similar way. Please don't tell people these drinks are actually lattes.

    If you're trying to impress your date, or just want to satisfy your taste buds in the early morning (or late at night, I don't judge), go for something a little more adventurous and continue on your espresso journey. Stay caffeinated, my friends.

    My birthstone is a coffee bean.

    - Betsy Farrell