Cappuccino, Latte, Machiatto? WTF Is The Difference Anyway? - Amy Brooks

I do love coffee.  When I first started out in radio I did over nights (12m-6am) in Providence, RI at a station called Kix 106.  Great, now HOW do I stay awake when 99% of all others are snoring and more importantly when I'm normally asleep??  Coffee, that's how.  Of course I was in my early 20's and was not familiar with neither the flavor nor the coffee lifestyle.  So I'd order an extra large hot coffee from DD with extra cream and extra sugar.  Today, I wouldn't be able to choke that much cream or sugar down if you had a gun to my head.

So here I am many years later and the coffee choices are not only amazingly vast, but they are confusing to me still!  I am not only a daily coffee drinker but I don't need all that sugar and cream any more, some but no more extra/extra.  In fact i like to try new preparations of my favorite morning beverage but when I stand in line at Starbucks or Pete's I start getting nervous looking at the menu and suddenly it's my turn!  So I order the same damn thing every time!  Medium (grande) 2 pump vanilla latte.  Yawn.  So boring and safe and well, vanilla. 😉

So on this National Cappuccino Day I thought I'd do a little research for myself and thought if i weren't alone that this could prove to help others from specialty coffee ordering paralysis when it's your turn at the counter!

First of all before checking out the visual below here's some verbal explanation.  The main difference between most of the popular coffee drinks is the amount of foam, milk, and espresso that each contains.

As it turns out coffee foam found atop gourmet coffees is the rub.  Apparently, the type of foam that's nestled on top isn't all created equally!  Who knew?

Microfoam has bubbles so small that they can hardly be seen, which results in a very smooth, velvety mouth-feel (yumm). Dry foam has many large bubbles that create a less smooth texture and more volume to cover the coffee.

With that in mind, here is the best visual representation and explanation of which drink is which.  After reviewing these, I will admit that really they're all pretty much the damn same, they just  seem to be administered in different order with a specific type of foam.

Which brings me to this... Screw it!  I'll just save my hard earned extra $4 and order a regular brewed coffee. 🙂

Enjoy!

-Amy