Espresso is arguably the most complex of all the coffee drinks. It requires lots of pressure, lots of science and lots of equipment to get right.
Here are 5 fun facts about this beautiful, beautiful drink that you probably didn’t know.
1. The word ‘espresso’ means ‘when something is forced out’ in Italian
If you like your coffee strong, you have Italy to thank. They invented it, and they named it with reason in mind.
The word ‘espresso’ loosely translates to ‘when something is forced out’ in Italian. What makes this drink unique is that it uses pressure to push water through tightly packed coffee. And so, it was aptly named.
2. It’s all in the crema
Espresso crema is the brown airy layer that sits on top of the rest of the beverage, and a lot can be said about espresso just by looking at the crema.
For example, you can tell if your drink is under or over extracted, how fresh the beans are and, well, whether you should serve it up or re-pour your shot.
3. To make one shot, it requires 42 coffee beans
This is an approximation, but, it’s a fun fact. To produce a single shot, you need 42 coffee beans. At least, according to this coffee quiz.
4. The fat in espresso is higher than in filter coffee
There’s approximately 0.6 percent fat in a drip coffee. There’s 2.5 percent fat in an espresso. Quite simply, a higher concentration of extraction occurs when you force water through using pressure, and consequently, more fatty oils are pulled out of the coffee and into the cup.
5. The Italian government regulates the stuff
Coffee is such an important part of daily Italian life that the government regulates the price of espresso so that it’s accessible to everyone. True story.
Espresso is less caffeinated
We’ll end on this doozy of a fun fact. Espresso contains one third less caffeine than regular drip coffee. This is mainly because it’s only a two-ounce drink (while drip coffee is often served in an eight-ounce cup).
So, next time you go to make an espresso to keep you awake in the afternoon, swap it out for some drip coffee beans and brew up a Chemex instead. It’ll serve you better.