small dictionary of coffee addiction


Tamper, dry, flat white, red eye – these are just some of the terms you will encounter in cafes, especially if you are passionate about everything related to espresso or want to work as a barista. Find out in this article what other names are frequently used in this field and what they mean.


The defining feature of the drink called espresso is the infusion under pressure, usually at a level of 9 bar or 130PSI, without these values being nailed, especially when using capsules. Beyond this feature, the limits compared to other coffee-based drinks are quite relative.

Although it is mainly prepared with finely ground, finely ground berries, there are many people who prefer softer espressos. These are just some of the interesting curiosities about this product. If you are passionate about coffee, we suggest you find out some of the most used terms specific to the field, from this short dictionary.

Who makes the coffee

Barista – the person who prepares espresso varieties in a cafe. It is a job that requires the correct knowledge of the infusion technique and recipes for the most popular dishes in this category.

small dictionary of coffee addiction

Classic specialties

Caffe Americano – is a variety of espresso in the category of those made with a larger amount of water. It is generally prepared from a shot of espresso and the addition of enough water to fill a container with a volume of 175ml. In some cases, however, two shots can be used, which makes the strength and aroma of the drink different.

Caffe Latte – this type of espresso is consumed especially in Italy in the morning, but it is an equally good option for those who want a little extra energy in the afternoon. It is obtained from a shot of espresso mixed with warm milk and milk foam placed on top with a teaspoon.

Café au Lait – although similar in name, Café au Lait is not the same as Caffe Latte. In this case, the espresso is mixed only with milk, without receiving the addition of foam. It is therefore easier to prepare, especially for those less familiar with the foaming process. In general, the espresso / milk ratio is 1 to 1. In addition, various flavors can be added such as vanilla, cinnamon, lemon or orange peel, etc.

Caffe Mocha – to obtain Caffe Mocha, two shots of espresso or a double espresso are used, over which both hot milk and milk in the form of foam are added. This recipe also includes chocolate, which is why it is appreciated by those who want something different from a simple coffee.

Other terms

Cream – milk foam, light copper color that is added to the surface of an espresso shot.

Demitasee – this term comes from French and means "half cup", referring to the classic containers in which a shot of espresso is served. A demitasse contains between 60 and 90ml, in Italian it is called "tazzina", and in German "mokkatasse". It is usually made of porcelain or ceramic, but there are also glass models, with metal base and handle. It is used for concentrated drinks such as espresso, Turkish or Greek coffee.

Dispenser – the final segment of grinders integrated in the espresso machine, which allows the correct dosing of the amount of ground coffee poured into the filter holder.

small dictionary of coffee addiction

Doppio – this term is sometimes used to indicate two shots of espresso or a double espresso.

Dry – you will find it in English, on the description of the drinks in some cafes, as an alternative to the classic milk recipes and it means the exclusion of the addition of hot milk and the use of only milk foam.

Espresso con Pana – in free translation means simple espresso, with whipped cream added on top.

Espresso Macchiato – the espresso variant (single or double) to which is added a layer of heated milk and textured on top.

Flat White – is preferred by those who prefer coffee with a lot of milk and is prepared by combining an espresso shot with a double amount of heated milk, without adding foam.

Grinder – designates the grinding system that you will always find integrated in the best DeLongh i , Krups or Breville espresso machine. This function ensures the fresh grinding of coffee beans, an essential condition for obtaining a tasty and aromatic infusion.

Knock Box – is a box, most often metal, sold in various forms, which is placed under or near the espresso machine. Its role is to provide a simple and quick way to get rid of ground coffee from the filter holder, once it has been infused, to prepare the instrument for the next round.

Sideboard – under this name are sold, in specialty stores, stainless steel kettles used for heating and frothing milk used for espresso.

Latte Macchiato – also known as "Long Macchiato", this drink is obtained by mixing a shot of espresso or even half a shot, with enough heated and textured milk to fill the cup in which it is served.

Filter holder – cup-shaped accessory with handle that contains coffee particles compacted during infusion.

small dictionary of coffee addiction

Puc – this is the name of the compacted coffee from the filter holder through which the hot water passes, they are pressure, in order to extract the aromatic and energizing liquid called espresso. The name comes from its resemblance in shape to the hockey puck.

Quad – if you see this term in the description of an espresso drink, it is good to know that it involves four shots.

Red Eye – is a term used to indicate a slightly more intense recipe, which involves combining a shot of espresso with a coffee infused by the classic procedure.

Ristretto – the formula preferred by those who need a little and intense coffee to restart their engines. It is obtained by infusing only the first three quarters of a standard shot.

Shot – term used to indicate simple espresso, infused in an amount of 30ml of intense and aromatic liquid

Tamper – is the accessory used to compact the ground coffee in the filter holder and has a shape similar to a classic stamp, with round base and handle. The dimensions differ depending on the device for which it is designed.

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