Is espresso stronger than Americano

Cafe Americano: Everything about origin, tradition and preparation

A Cafe Americano is an American type of coffee in its name. But is that also true? Where did he originally come from? And even more important: what is a Cafe Americano anyway? Not everyone knows this classic and what they are actually ordering or could order. Today we clarify all these questions for you, tell a little about the origin of the Americano and reveal how you can prepare it at home.

Cafe Americano: origin and preparation

No, the Cafe Americano does not come from America, but from beautiful Italy. A Cafe Americano is nothing less than a "stretched" espresso. An espresso with water, so to speak. How exactly you prepare this and why this Italian creation is now called "Americano", you will find out in the following section.

The origin of the Cafe Americano

It all started in World War II when the American military took the Italian coffee discovered for himself. They loved the smell and taste of the little black dress, but found it too strong. As clever as the Americans are, they simply added water to neutralize the bitter substances. The Italians thought this idea was funny and simply added the creation to their drinks menu. This is how the stretched espresso, called Cafe Americano, came about. Invented by Americans in beautiful Italy!

This is the most common story behind the creation of Cafe Americano. Another, less common and realistic myth is this: The British writer Somerset Maugham used the term "Café Americain" already in a novel published in 1928. It is unlikely, however, that this was today's Cafe Americano.

This is how a Cafe Americano is prepared

In short: A normal espresso is poured into a slightly larger cup and poured with hot water. Sounds simple, but depending on the preparation, there can be considerable differences in taste. It's not that simple after all. It all depends on the right order and the right ingredients!

Preparing a Cafe Americano

The preparation here is analogous to that of an espresso. You should note the 4 M’s here:

  • macchina - the machine
  • macinatura - the grinding
  • miscela - the bean mixture
  • mano - the hand

With regard to the Machine ("la macchina") For really good espresso, we recommend a portafilter machine, which every Italian swears by when preparing espresso. Alternatively, you can also use a decent fully automatic coffee machine.

The Degree of grinding ("la macinatura") the beans should be very fine. Because in the portafilter or fully automatic coffee machine, the brewing water is shot through the espresso flour with pressure, so it only has a short contact time. In order to still get the best flavors, a fine grind is important, as it increases the surface area of ​​the powder. When it comes to quantity, the more flavor you want, the more grams you should use. We recommend 6.5 g per espresso shot.

The Beans("La miscela") should be as fresh as possible. The freshness refers to the period of time that has passed since the coffee was roasted. Of course, we recommend our Happy Coffee, which is sent to you fragrant immediately after roasting. Or you can choose our coffee subscription right away, with which you can get your favorite variety to your home at a delivery interval of your choice (e.g. every three weeks). This means that there are always fresh beans in the house and in the machine. The difference between espresso and coffee lies mainly in the roasting of the green coffee beans. For the Cafe Americano you should definitely use espresso beans and not coffee beans. Because espresso beans have a more intense taste.

Now only something is missing Dexterity ("la mano"). Because the basic principle of preparing a Cafe Americano is simple: the right temperature water (88-94 ° C) is pressed through the brewing chamber so that 25 ml of espresso are produced in approx. 25 seconds of extraction time.

Brewing a Cafe Americano

As I said, everything starts with the preparation of one classic espresso. Take a look at our article on how to make the perfect espresso. How much espresso you use for the Cafe Americano is ultimately up to you.

To stretch the espresso you now need hot water. Anyone who has an espresso machine or a fully automatic machine can use the water directly from there. If you cannot fall back on this luxury, you have to use the classic method: kettle or stove! Care should be taken here to ensure that the ideal brewing temperature is available. For espresso this is between 88-94 ° C.

Now you start to prepare the Cafe Americano. Important: not in an espresso cup! Because you add hot water to the espresso afterwards. Ideally you take a cup or a glass where about 2 espressos would fit. Now add the water to the espresso. The ideal mixing ratio of espresso and water is 1: 1 in Cafe Americano. This can of course be changed as you wish.

Tip:The more carefully you pour the water into the espresso, the more crema is retained and the fewer bubbles there are on the surface. It is best to use a kettle for pouring - Barisa swear by the Hario Buono, for example. With it you can achieve a precise, controlled infusion of your coffee.

The enjoyment of the Cafe Americano

Now you can have your Cafe Americano whole enjoy in peace. Take a little time to drink it. Tipping it down quickly is not the whole point of a good coffee! By the way, this specialty coffee has zero calories. So you can drink it without a guilty conscience.

With additional extra shots of espresso you can do the intensity Increase your coffee or get more crema. If you add too much water, the Cafe Americano can become watery, sour and bitter.

When preparing, you should simply use the amount of water experiment. Testing is above studying! You can of course also prepare an Americano with decaffeinated coffee.

Special types and relatives of Cafe Americano

What is the difference between an Americano and a Lungo? Or is it even the same drink? In the following sections, we will explain to you the drinks that can be confused with Cafe Americano and give you a summery Iced Americano recipe to take with you.

Differences between Cafe Lungo, Long Black and Cafe Americano

The Cafe Americano is not allowed with the Cafe Lungo be confused. There is a crucial difference here: with the Americano, the water is added first to the scalding. With the Lungo, on the other hand, twice as much water is already used at the Broths used. Hence, a Cafe Lungo is stronger than an Americano. The former is more like a normal filter coffee, even if the taste differs significantly.

The variant of the Long black, which is often found in Australia and New Zealand, is also prepared differently. The espresso is poured onto the hot water. As a result, the crema floats on top and the espresso slowly pulls through the water.

And what aboutFilter coffee? It is generally made with less roasted and finer ground beans - namely coffee beans instead of espresso beans. This means that normal filter coffee is milder and less powerful than Americano. You can read about the exact difference between an espresso and a filter coffee in this article.

Iced Cafe Americano

There is now one of every coffee drink Iced variant,even the classic filter coffee as cold drip. So there is of course also the Cafe Americano ice-cold. Espresso, cold water and ice cubes are required for the preparation. It is best to pour the espresso directly onto the ice cubes. Then you fill up the drink with cold water. The Iced Americano can also be left to stand a little after preparation so that the ice cubes further reduce the temperature of the drink.

Our conclusion: The Cafe Americano is a classic

The Cafe Americano is not one of the most popular or well-known coffee specialties in Germany, such as cappuccino, latte macchiato or the classic filter coffee. Nevertheless, it is a good alternative to normal filter coffee, especially for people who do not prefer their coffee that much.

Since the Cafe Americano contains the same amount of acid and caffeine as a normal espresso, but is filled with water in a 1: 1 ratio, it is very gentle on the stomach and easy to digest. The Americano is an excellent alternative to a classic coffee or espresso, especially after a meal.


About the author: Sabrina works as a freelance copywriter and social media editor. Preferably with a freshly brewed coffee in hand - with extra milk froth!

About the editor:Heidi loves coffee, especially in combination with a healthy breakfast. When she is not writing articles on Happy Coffee, the globetrotter reports on her travels on her blog