How To Make Cappuccino

Most Popular Coffee Drinks In Italian Bars And Restaurants

Italy is a country that’s very well known for its coffee and coffee drinks. From the strong espresso shots prepared in high quality, professional machines, to the sweetest and most delicious coffee iced creams. Today we’re going to take a look at the most famous and traditional coffee types you can find in bars and restaurants across the Italian territory.

1. Espresso

Espresso is the most basic coffee type that you can find almost anywhere. Strong, short, and packed with flavor, this is the standard choice for all Italians who want a “pick me up” after lunch. Espresso is so common and wanted, that if you were to ask a barista for simply one coffee, without specifying anything, they will prepare you an espresso. As a side note, it is used in the very famous Tiramisù recipe, which we also told the history of.

There are a few variations to the espresso:

  • Caffè doppio: This is simply 2 shots of espresso in one cup.
  • Caffè ristretto: Is a very concentrated espresso, harder taste, with less caffeine.
  • Caffè lungo: An espresso obtained by draining more water.
  • Caffè macchiato: An espresso with some warm milk.
  • Caffè corretto: An espresso with a small amount of liquor, usually grappa.


2. Cappuccino

Cappuccino is another staple of Italian coffee. Italians usually get it for breakfast along with some sweets and cocoa powder on top. As per tradition, Italians have this almost exclusively for breakfast, so ordering one after lunch may get you some weird looks. Mocaccino Is a cappuccino variation, that adds some hot chocolate and cream.

Cappuccino Cream
Cappuccino Cream

3. Marocchino

Marocchino is a type of coffee, usually served in a transparent cup to admire the layers, that consists of coffee with foam milk, and a sprinkle of dark chocolate powder on top.

4. Latte macchiato & Caffelatte

Latte macchiato is served in a tall glass and it consists of mostly warm milk, milk foam, and espresso poured on top. The poured espresso clashes with milk, forming a satisfying gradient between the milky white and creamy coffee.

Caffelatte, on the other hand, is simply a mix of warm milk and a shot of espresso. Served in a glass, this is a very popular breakfast item in Italy because people like dipping biscuits in it. Caffelatte is basically what people abroad call a coffee drink “latte”.

5. Caffè d’orzo

Lastly, we have caffè d’orzo which isn’t a type of coffee, but rather a very similar beverage to espresso. As the name suggests, it is brewed with roasted barley grains, therefore it does not contain any caffeine at all. Caffè d’orzo is a perfect drink if you can’t drink caffeine for health reasons, but still don’t want to miss out on the social aspect of grabbing a coffee with friends and family. In Italy, this is a perfect drink for children, so that everyone can partake in the “coffee after lunch” tradition. Families at home can brew it using an “orziera” which is a moka adapted to brewing barley grains.

This drink became very popular in Europe during World War II. Since coffee beans were expensive and hard to get, the Spanish Mediterranean coast started roasting and brewing with barley grains instead. This choice has been so popular that it spread quickly to Italy, and has been a “coffee” staple ever since.

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