A lot of people have heard of espresso but sometimes think it might not be for them. There are some misconceptions about drinks with espresso that can turn people away. For example, some believe that espresso has more caffeine than a regular cup of coffee and may make them feel jittery. The truth is that a typical cup of coffee actually has more caffeine than an espresso shot straight out of the espresso machine. Some people also believe that espresso is only for making fancy coffee beverages. While that is true in some cases, there are also some simple ways to enjoy espresso and taste your coffee bean in a whole new way. Using ingredients such as whipped cream, milk, syrup, and dark or white chocolate, or flavors like vanilla can transform your usual shot of espresso.
Want to dip your toe into the world of espresso? Here are some drinks with espresso you will love!
1. Café Americano
The Café Americano (or just Americano) is a great introduction to espresso for those who have been enjoying regular drip coffee for their entire lives. Put simply, an Americano is a double shot of espresso with hot water. The result is a very bold coffee flavor with a thin layer of crema on top. The process of making espresso will allow you to taste a lot of flavors within the coffee bean that are sometimes lost when making drip coffee. Now that you have tried an Americano, it’s time to expand your horizons.
The word “macchiato” means “stained.” When you see a prepared macchiato in front of you then you will understand what that name comes from. A macchiato uses rich foam as a base. The espresso is then poured into the foam, staining it as it rushes to the bottom of the mug.
If you have always enjoyed your coffee with a little bit of milk or cream then this is a great way to introduce your taste buds to espresso. A cappuccino is made with one-third espresso, one-third foam, and one-third steamed milk. The result is a very rich beverage that allows the flavor of the espresso to shine without becoming too strong or overpowering. If you’re feeling artsy you can use the foam and steamed milk to create designs in your mug before drinking. If you’re not so artsy you can go to the coffee shop and have them do it for you.
4. Café Latte
Want something even more rich and creamy? The café latte is for you! This is one-third espresso and two-thirds hot milk with a very thin layer of foam. If you want something to sit back with on a cold winter day then the café latte is your best bet. It feels substantial and rich but still allows the unique flavor of the espresso to stand out.
Chances are you have made a mocha using drip coffee and hot cocoa before. A mocha made with espresso takes things to the next level. Espresso, cocoa, milk, and foam all combine to make a hot beverage that is a treat to enjoy. This is the perfect after-dinner drink to sit back with as you digest and spend time with friends or family.
6. Iced Coffee
This brings together drip coffee and espresso into a cool drink for you to enjoy. Pour drip coffee over ice and top it with a double shot of espresso. The bold flavor of the espresso adds a nice touch to your usual iced coffee. The crema also gives the iced coffee a fuller feel.
7. Flavored Latte
You have probably seen any variety of flavored lattes available at coffee shops. You can easily make these at home with a little bit of experimentation! Try adding vanilla, egg nog, and other spices to your standard latte and create a flavored latte like you would order at the coffee shop—but for much less money!
8. Espresso Martini
Want to add a kick to your next martini? Try an espresso martini! Mix one and half ounces Kahlua, one ounce vodka, and one ounce of espresso in a cocktail shaker. Then strain the mixture into a martini glass. You have a tasty adult beverage with the flavorful kick of espresso. Of course, it goes without saying, please enjoy these responsibly.
9. Red Eye
This beverage has a few different names but Red Eye sounds fitting. Take your usual cup of drip coffee and add a double shot of espresso for a real wake up. See why the name Red Eye makes sense? The espresso gives your coffee a bold taste and adds some extra caffeine for those mornings where you need a little extra jump.
10. Café Noisette
If you have tried drinking your espresso straight up and found it to be just a little too strong, then perhaps a café noisette is what you are looking for. Simply prepare a single or double shot of espresso and then add a few drops of milk. The milk helps soften the bold flavor of the espresso but stops short of going as far as something like a cappuccino or café latte. The milk should simply change the color of the espresso but be careful not to add so much that it becomes the focal point of the beverage. This drink mainly relies on the flavor of the espresso.