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Caffè Breve vs Latte: What’s the Difference?

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breve vs latte

If you’re a coffee lover, you’re probably familiar with lattes, which are one of the world’s most popular espresso drinks. A less common beverage to see on a menu is a caffè breve. It actually goes by two different names: breve latte or caffè breve. So what separates a breve from a latte? Read on to find out what makes them different.

Latte Basics

Let’s start with an espresso beverage you’re familiar with: a latte. To make a classic latte you need two simple ingredients, espresso, and steamed milk. A latte starts with the espresso shots, and then a large amount of steamed milk is added, often with a small layer of foam on top.

Lattes can be served in sizes varying from six to 20 ounces, so you can have as much or as little of it as you prefer. The latte has a smooth texture and a lot of espresso flavor without being overpowering, thanks to the milk. The best part is, lattes can have a variety of flavors added, like hazelnut or caramel, to make them just right for you.

Latte

Caffè Breve Basics

This drink is an Americanized version of the Italian cappuccino. It is just as simple as a latte, because it too only has two ingredients. It is an espresso-based drink that is made with half-and-half instead of milk. The half-and-half is frothed and added to the espresso to make a caffè breve.

Caffè breves are fluffier, creamier, and richer than lattes. They’re more like cappuccinos, topped with quite a bit of rich foam.

caffè breve

Highlighting the Differences

Lattes and caffè breves are similar drinks, but with one important difference: the dairy product used. This is followed by a few other technique differences that cause the two drinks to taste different.

Lattes are made with espresso and frothed 2% or whole milk. They’re typically topped with a small amount of milk foam and can have flavored syrups added. Caffè breves, on the other hand, are made with espresso and half-and-half. Like cappuccinos, caffè breves are topped with a large amount of foam. They’re also richer and creamier than lattes.