5 Steps for Preparing the Perfect Latte

A café is a charming restaurant establishment that offers customers the choice of a variety of coffee beverages as well as a wide assortment of menu items. Typically, lighter fare is served at a café. Sandwiches, salads, fruit, vegetables, and even some simple hot meals are common in a café. One of the biggest reasons, though, why consumers choose to visit a café as opposed to their favorite fast food restaurant is the ability to get a delicious latte.

Lattes are one of the most popular types of espresso beverages served throughout the world. A latte is essentially a creamy combination of steamed milk and brewed espresso. The natural sweetness of milk is a perfect complement to the sometimes bitter and always intense flavor of espresso. If you plan on offering lattes to your customers you will need to know the five necessary steps to preparing the perfect latte. Lattes can be tricky, but these five steps will guide you through the process and guarantee that you create a perfectly crafted latte every time.

Choosing and Grinding Coffee Beans

First, and most importantly, it is crucial to choose the right coffee bean for your lattes. Espresso roast coffee beans must be used because the high intensity roasting that these beans experience imparts a strong and rich coffee flavor to the finished beverage. Grinding the coffee beans with a coffee grinder is also very important. Espresso must be brewed with coffee beans that have been ground to a fine powder. Because hot water passes very quickly over the coffee grounds while espresso is being brewed, a superfine ground will ensure that there is plenty of bean surface area for a strong brew.

Brewing the Espresso

Brewing espresso requires a special machine. Unlike regular drip coffee makers, espresso makers force a small amount of hot water through a metal filter with extremely tiny holes. The espresso machine heats the water to a high temperature, and the espresso must be firmly packed inside the filter for espresso to brew correctly.

Steaming the Milk

Once your espresso shot has been brewed, you will need to steam the milk in a frothing pitcher that will be then be added to the shot to create a latte. For lattes, the milk should be steamed to a temperature of 145 to 160 degrees Fahrenheit. This can be checked with a frothing thermometer. Milk is steamed through an espresso machine accessory known as a steam wand, which shoots high pressure steam into the milk. This heats the milk and creates milk froth or foam.

Adding Flavors

If you plan on adding flavored syrups to a latte, it is a good idea to mix the flavor into the hot shot of espresso. This will ensure that the syrup melts and spreads evenly throughout the beverage.

Assembling the Beverage

Pour the shot of espresso into the espresso cup or mug in which you will be serving the latte. Using a spoon to hold back the foam on top of your steamed milk, pour the milk into the espresso shot. Before the cup is filled, scoop some of the frothy milk onto the top of the latte, and you will have created the perfect hot beverage for your café.