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Seattle's Coffee Culture

A Guide to the Language of Coffee Houses

 

Seattle has a sophisticated coffee culture.  However, you don't have to be intimidated by the culture.  If you are puzzled about what to order, ask one of the servers what their recommendations are.  There are a few terms that will help you navigate the menu boards for beverage offerings.  Remember, you don't have to be a coffee expert to enjoy the delicious offerings of a coffee house.

 

TYPE OF COFFEE BEVERAGES

 

Americano--one shot of espresso plus hot water

Cappuccino--an espresso topped with steamed milk and frothed milk

Doppio--two espresso shots in a cup

Double--two espresso shots in any beverage

Espresso--a full-flavored form of coffee made by forcing pressurized, hot water through finely ground beans.  Espresso is noted for its crema.

Frappuccino--a latte or mocha mixed with crushed ice 

Latte--an espresso with lots of steamed milk

Macchiato--an espresso topped with milk foam

Mocha--a latte topped with a blend of cocoa or chocolate

 

SIZES OF COFFEE ORDERS

 

 

Small--a 12 ounce cup

Grande--a 16 ounce cup

Tall  (venti)--Generally a 20-ounce cup

 

SPECIALIZED TERMS FOR COFFEE HOUSES

 

Barista--the employee in charge of making espresso beverages

Crema--the reddish-brown froth on a properly prepared espresso

Cupping--the process of coffee tasting, similar to wine tasting.

 

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