A while back I was looking for a complete guide to all of the major types of coffee but I couldn’t find one that summarized everything nicely.
So I decided to go ahead and make one.
Below you’ll find a list of all of the different types of coffee and a chart you can look at to see a summary of the different varieties.
I’ve included all of the popular types of coffee; both brewed or drip styles along with different types of espresso.
You can read the detailed descriptions below or jump to the infographic at the bottom for a quick summary.
Types of Brewed or Drip Coffee
Drip Coffee from a Coffee Machine
This is the type of coffee that most people are familiar with.
It involves a filter, usually paper, which is filled with the coffee grounds and placed above a pot.
Water from a machine is then dripped onto the beans which will produce the coffee which fills the pot below.
It’s crucial that the water is the correct temperature though.
It should be between 195 F (91 C) and 205 F (96 C).
Any cooler than 195 F and the coffee will not extract properly as the aromatic oils will not be released.
However, water at a full boil should never be used as it will burn the coffee and make it more bitter and acidic.
The key is to be able to add the water as close to 205 F, just below boiling, as possible in order to get the maximum amount of flavor from the coffee without burning it.
The French Press
The French press is another way to brew your coffee which doesn’t require an electronic machine to do it.
The picture on the right shows an example of a French press.
In order to use it you want to first add your coffee grinds and then pour in your water a few moments after it has stopped boiling.
Let it steep for anywhere from 3 to 8 minutes depending on how strong you want your coffee and how coarsely ground your beans are.
Once you’ve extracted enough flavor you can go ahead and slowly lower the plunger down into the glass and push the coffee grinds to the bottom.
Also, make sure that you aren’t grinding your coffee too fine as the individual particles will then seep through the filter when you move the plunger down.
Because the French press allows the water to spend more time soaking up the flavors from the ground coffee beans you don’t have to worry about losing any flavor when using the coarser grind.
And, since the French press gives you much more flexibility with how long you let your water soak in the coffee grinds, you can create a cup of coffee that is much more personalized to your own tastes.
Just continue to experiment with the coarseness of the coffee grinds and how long you allow the water to sit before you pour it off.
Cold Brewed Coffee
A cold brewed coffee is actually very similar to a French press except you’re using cold water and an entire day, or night, to let the water steep in the coffee grinds.
To start, you want to place your coarse ground coffee grinds into your press but then instead of adding hot water you’re going to add cold.
Gently stir the mixture and seal tightly before placing it in your refrigerator for the next twelve hours.
When the time is up just get out the filter for your French press and push down the grinds so you can pour off your coffee.
In fact, you don’t even need a French press to do this.
Since the water is cold you can use any kind of fine cloth to filter out the grinds and pour the coffee into your container of choice.
The benefit of the cold brew method is that you’re getting all of the good parts of coffee with less of the bad effects.
By brewing the coffee slowly and gently in cold water you’ll be getting all of the good aroma and flavors from the beans with less of the acidic or bitter tastes.
Because of this cold brewing is becoming more and more popular among coffee connoisseurs who are looking to create the perfect cup.
And as an added bonus you can even store your cold brewed coffee for up to two weeks if you keep it tightly sealed in an airtight container.
There are a lot of different ways to make iced coffee, including with espresso, but I want to go over a simple way to make it with brewed coffee now.
Basically you can take any kind of brewed coffee you want and simply pour it over ice.
The only thing to remember is to make the brew especially strong since a lot of the ice is going to melt when you pour the hot coffee over it.
This will dilute the taste if you haven’t made the coffee especially more potent.
You can also blend the whole mixture in a blender if you’re looking to make a cool treat in the summertime.
Types of Espresso
Unlike brewed coffees espressos use a machine to force hot water through a small and tightly packed pod of coffee grounds to create an extremely concentrated concoction which can be used to make many different types of drinks.
Espresso (Short Black)
An espresso, or short black, is simply one 1 ounce shot of espresso in a cup with nothing else added to it.
It serves as the foundation for all of the rest of the drinks below but can still be consumed plain by itself.
Americano (Long Black)
An Americano, or long black, is essentially a watered down espresso.
It is composed of 2 ounces of hot water with one espresso shot added on top.
It received the nickname Americano as many Italians thought that their counterparts across the Atlantic couldn’t handle the taste of the pure espresso.
It has a similar taste to regular brewed coffee.
Double Espresso (Doppio)
A double espresso is exactly what it sounds like; two shots of pure espresso with no milk, foam, or additional water added.
If you need a major infusion of caffeine then this is the drink you want.
There are two different ways to make a Ristretto but both versions will give you a very pure and concentrated form of espresso.
The first way is to make an espresso in the usual way but with only half the normal amount of water.
This will make the espresso extremely concentrated and thick.
The second way is to remove the glass from the machine once ¾ of an ounce have been extracted but still using the same amount of water as a normal espresso.
This means that you will only get the initial and most concentrated extract of the espresso without the last quarter ounce which will be less concentrated.
Many believe this to be the most pure form of espresso.
Types of Espresso Drinks
There is an almost endless number of different drinks involving espresso but they all contain variations of these three things; espresso, steamed milk, and foamed milk.
Steamed milk can be done on your stove or using a wand from an espresso machine and you should try to keep the temperature between 150 F (65 C) and 160 F (71 C) for the perfect flavor.
In order to get this just right you actually want to stop steaming at around 135 F (58 C) as the temperature of the milk will continue to rise inside for a little bit afterwards.
When creating the milk foam you want a slightly cooler temperature and still make sure that you don’t exceed 160 F (71 C).
Keep your steam wand near the top of the milk and move it closer to the bottom once the majority of the milk has frothed.
For both steamed and foamed milk make sure that you start with cool milk from the refrigerator as this allows more time for it to froth before the temperature gets too high.
A short Machiatto is simply a single shot of espresso with a dab of steamed milk and foam on top.
You ultimately want a three layer “cake” with the espresso lying on the bottom and then a smaller layer of steamed milk and foam on top.
A long Machiatto is identical to the short with only one difference; it uses a double shot of espresso instead of a single.
As with the short version you just want a dab of the steamed milk and foam on top.
A caramel Machiatto is much more of a dessert style coffee.
It has all of the same characteristics of the previous machiattos except that it also has some caramel syrup added to the top.
Some people also like to mix in some vanilla as well for some extra flavor and sweetness.
Try this one out if you’re looking for a sweet treat as well as a little pick me up at the same time.
The main difference between a cappuccino and a machiatto is that a cappuccino has much more steamed milk and foam on top.
In order to make one you want to express one shot of espresso into a cup and then add a small layer of steamed milk over it and finally add 2 to 3 cm. of foam on top.
The key is to make sure that the middle layer of steamed milk is less than the larger portion of foamed milk on top.
Many people also now sprinkle a layer of chocolate on top to make it extra sweet.
A latte is very similar to a cappuccino.
Both are made with one shot of espresso on the bottom with a layer of steamed milk in the middle and some foam on the top.
The only real difference is in the ratio of steamed milk to foamed milk.
For a latte you only want a small 1 cm. layer of foam on the top with a larger portion of steamed milk in the center making up the difference.
A piccolo latte is kind of like a little baby latte in a smaller 100 ml glass.
Instead of using a regular shot of espresso it instead uses a ristretto shot that is smaller than one ounce and more concentrated.
After the ristretto has been added to the shot glass a small layer of steamed milk and a dab of foam are added to the top.
A flat white is identical to a cappuccino except for one major difference; it only uses steamed milk.
A flat white starts with one shot of espresso and then has a large layer of steamed milk placed over it with no foam.
If a hot chocolate and a cappuccino got married and had a baby it would be the mocha.
To make a mocha blend you want to first extract one shot of espresso and then mix chocolate powder directly into the espresso.
After that you want to add a layer of steamed milk followed by a layer of 2 to 3 cm of milk foam in the same manner as a cappuccino.
To top it all off you can put some more chocolate on the top to make a truly delicious and invigorating treat.
An affogato is a great new way to enjoy your ice cream.
It is made by first placing a scoop of vanilla ice cream in the bottom of a bowl and then adding either one or two shots of espresso on top.
Definitely a great way to cool off on a hot day!
As you can see there are an amazing number of different types of coffee in the world.
Ranging from the potent, and often artistic, espressos to the subtler slow brewed varieties.
Whether you prefer your coffee hot and strong, iced, or with some ice cream or chocolate there’s always going to be a coffee out there with your name on it.
Copy the link below to share this image on your site:
Please include attribution to blissfulcup.com with this graphic.