Espresso vs Americano vs Long Black Vs Lungo


About 8 minutes of reading time

Home  /  Resources  /  Espresso vs Americano vs Long Black Vs Lungo
Espresso vs Americano vs Long Black vs Lungo

Coffee is a type of brewed beverage that is made from roasted coffee beans and the seeds of the berries of some Coffea plants. Coffee berries are picked, roasted, and dried when they turn from green to bright red, signaling ripeness. Based on the desired taste, dried coffee seeds are roasted to differing degrees and that is what we ground and brew with our personally preferred methods.

In a coffee shop, we often encounter these terms – Espresso, Americano, Lungo, and Long Black. These are the basic drinks that most of the coffee shops have on their menu. In this article, we will get you closer to these drinks as they are often thought confused into each other, but in actual each of these is a tad different.

Espresso Vs Americano Vs Lungo Vs Long Black – Comparison Chart

BasisEspressoAmericanoLungoLong Black
MeaningEspresso is a dark, strong coffee made by forcing steam through ground coffee beansAmericano is made by diluting Espresso with hot water until it resembles normal coffee in strength.Lungo is basically an espresso that has been extracted with more water over a longer period of time.A long black is the exact opposite of an Americano, in which Espresso is added to hot water and is stronger and fuller in taste.
OriginItalyItalyItalyAustralia
EquipementEspresso  MachineEspresso  MachineEspresso  MachineEspresso  Machine
FlavorMild bitter, sour and rich in flavour. Less watery.Deeper, richer, and much more complete in taste.Bitter coffee with a lighter taste.The strength and intensity of the coffee are high and decreases gradually as you slowly finish the drink. That’s because of crema, which is the most powerful part of the beverage
GrindFinely grind roasted beans with a texture of powdered sugarFinely groundedFinely groundedExtra fine grind
Time to brew20 – 30 seconds25 – 30 secondsAbout a minute27 – 33 seconds
CremaYesYesLess than espressoYes, if brewed properly
Caffeine levelLess caffeine contentMild caffeine contentHigh caffeine contentRich in caffeine
Espresso to Water Ratio1:21:41:3 to 1:41:3 to 1:4
Espresso ShotsSingle shotDouble shotsLonger shots made with more waterDouble shots

About Espresso

Espresso

Espresso is an Italian coffee brewing process in which a small volume of nearly boiling water (around 90°C or 190°F) is pushed into finely ground coffee beans under 9–10 bars of pressure (expressed). In southern Europe, especially in Italy, Spain, Portugal, Switzerland, Southern France, and Bulgaria, Espresso is the most popular method of brewing coffee.

It’s the basis for a wide range of coffee drinks. It’s made from the same beans as coffee, except it’s stronger, smoother, and caffeine-rich. Espresso contains less caffeine per serving as compared to drip or filter coffee since it is typically consumed in smaller portions.

What is Espresso?

Espresso is a concentrated, full-flavored coffee that is served in “shots.” An espresso machine is used to force pressurize hot water into very finely ground coffee beans. The result is a stronger-than-coffee liquid topped with a “crema,” a brown foam that emerges as air bubbles mix with fine-ground coffee’s soluble oils and rests on top of a properly pulled shot of Espresso.

Espresso is bitter, lightly sweet, acidic, and toasty, with an enhanced coffee taste. Based on the coffee roast, the exact taste profile can differ. It has a creamier, smoother consistency than coffee.

The body, which is darker at the bottom, the heart, which is lighter in color in the middle, and the soft, foamy crema, which is on top, make up an espresso shot.

How is Espresso prepared?

Espresso is usually made with a machine because it takes pressure. You can make it at home without spending a lot of money. But there is far more to the recipe for some coffee lovers.

Here’s the recipe you’ll need to make a perfect Espresso.

Ingredients

  • Freshly roasted coffee beans
  • Coffee grinder
  • Coffee scale
  • Boiling water
  • Coffee maker

Instructions

  • Using a fine grinder, grind the beans.
  • Using your french press, brew your coffee.
  • Pour the coffee into a glass container or jug using a strainer or filter.
  • Start brewing another coffee right away, except this time use the coffee you just made to brew instead of water. This is double brewing.

You won’t get much crema, but you’ll get a super good, espresso-tasting coffee.

Pros

  • It has a taste that is rich and concentrated.
  • There is less water used in the making of this beverage.
  • It has three layers, each of them with a different taste.
  • You can create various Espresso based beverages.

Cons

  • It may be too strong for some people.
  • It has less caffeine content.

Stuck with an old espresso machine and don’t have a large budget to spend on one? We have a sorted list of Top-Notch Espresso Machines that cost below $500 and so will not burn a big hole in your pocket.

About Americano

Americano

In Italian, Caffè Americano means “American coffee.” According to legends, the drink was created during World War II when US soldiers stationed in Italy desired a coffee close to what they were served at home.

This assertion has never been proven, according to Wikipedia. The Americano was already described in Somerset Maugham’s 1928 novel set in Italy.

However, it’s unclear if this is a reference to coffee or an alcoholic beverage. The latter is possible, given the popularity of the Americano cocktail, which combines Campari and Vermouth with a splash of soda. Whatever the origins of the word, it is today’s most common way to describe an espresso diluted with hot water in almost every country in the world.

What is Americano?

Americano is basically an espresso shot mixed with water, with many of the same characteristics as Espresso but in a less concentrated form. This means that it’s typically brewed with a dark roast. Depending on the consistency of the bean, this can show itself as a slightly ‘roasty’ or burnt taste at the concentration level that the Americano is usually served at.

More oils would end up in the coffee as it is brewed with a metal filter. Since the water that follows the Espresso blends it, Americanos may taste uniform. As a result, the overall flavor of the drink is more concentrated and consistent in the cup.

One or two espresso shots are placed in a 6-ounce cup, and enough hot water is added to fill the glass. In most Americano recipes, one part of the Espresso is combined with two parts hot water. This provides a thicker, smoother, stronger, and more aromatic version of black coffee.

They can be made with cream or milk, and flavours like caramel or cinnamon can be added. Iced Americanos are also available, making them a refreshing option on a hot day.

How is Americano prepared?

Making an Americano may appear to be as easy as pouring hot water into an espresso, but the recipe involves much more for some coffee enthusiasts.

Here’s the recipe you’ll need to make a perfect Americano.

Ingredients

  • Espresso coffee beans
  • Hot or almost boiling water
  • Espresso machine
  • Coffee scale
  • Grinder
  • Espresso tamper

Instructions

  • To make a double shot, measure out your beans and grind them to a powder.
  • After tamping the beans, put the portafilter into its spot on the machine.
  • Make the Espresso.
  • Raise the temperature of water to 70-76°C.
  • Pour 1 part espresso into 2 parts hot water.

Pros 

  • The taste of Americano is deeper, richer, and much more complete.
  • They are easier to customize in terms of flavors.
  • It has a higher crema content.
  • The making of Americano is less time-consuming.

Cons

  • It requires an espresso machine, which can be expensive if you don’t have it.

About Lungo

Lungo

Espresso prepared especially is called Lungo. Long is the meaning of the Italian word ‘lungo.’ This results in a so-called ‘long espresso’ while preparing. For a long period of time, water is squeezed into finely ground coffee powder, adding multiple aromatic flavor components to the cup.

As a result, Espresso Lungo has a very good flavor, with a very high proportion of the coffee’s taste and aroma. And there’s more volume in the cup than in a classic espresso.

Since the added hot water passing through the ground coffee extracts components that would otherwise remain undissolved, a lungo is less strong but more bitter than an espresso.

What is Lungo?

Lungo is a coffee beverage made using an espresso machine to produce an Italian-style coffee but with a twist. It’s made with the same amount of finely ground coffee as a regular espresso shot, only twice the amount of water. 

A regular serving of Espresso takes 18 to 30 seconds to pull and fills 25 to 60 ml, while a lungo can take up to a minute to pull and fills 130 to 170 ml.

The type of coffee beans used, which are usually a blend of Arabica and Robusta, their grind, and the machine’s pressure all influence how long it takes to extract the dosage.

Lungo has a bitter flavor than normal Espresso because the shot takes longer to pull, which affects the extraction of the beans. There will be three parts of the lungo shots, but there will be less crema. Lungo can also be enjoyed with multiple shots

How is Lungo prepared?

Lungo, like most espresso-based beverages, can be made with the best super-automatic espresso machine.

  • Fill the machine’s tank with purified water.
  • Use your grinder or a blender to grind your coffee beans, making sure to grind them consistently for the best results.
  • Heat the machine.
  • Fill your espresso machine’s portafilter with an espresso shot.
  • To ensure that the liquid pours out uniformly, tamp the coffee beans with your hand’s weight and even pressure.
  • Fill the machine with the ground coffee.
  • To get the best lungos, set the machine’s extraction time to at least 60 seconds.
  • Press the brew button.
  • Fill your glass with a long shot of Espresso and serve it immediately.

Pros

  • It has a slightly milder taste.
  • Caffeine content is high.
  • With more water, a long shot can be made.

Cons

  • It can have a bitter flavor.
  • Lungo has a lower crema content.
  • It takes a long time to pull and make espresso shots.

About Long Black

Long Black

This story begins in Italy, as do most espresso-related origin stories. You might all have heard a story about World War II American soldiers’ palates being turned off by the strong espresso coffee served in shops. When the Americano concept made its way to Australia, the specialty coffee drink underwent two key forms of customization, resulting in a stronger final beverage known as a long black.

A long black is a coffee style that is common in Australia and New Zealand. It tastes and smells like an Americano but with a better aroma. A long black should be savored slowly. Since it is typically consumed without milk, the flavors of the underlying espresso blend are more prominent than in a cappuccino or flat white.

What is Long Black?

A double shot of Espresso or Ristretto is poured over hot water to make a long black. Typically, 100-120 ml of water isused, but the amount can vary depending on personal taste.

A long black is usually made with less water than an americano. As a result, it’s more concentrated, which means the Espresso’s flavor is more prominent. It’s not to be confused with a lungo, which is a shot of Espresso extracted with more water than normal. When brewed correctly, long black retains the more visible crema.

While the long black may appear to be identical to other black espresso-based beverages, its special preparation method gives it a distinct texture and flavor that differentiates it from Americano.

How is Long Black prepared?

All you need are two ingredients: Espresso and hot water to make this perfect drink. 

  • Long blacks are usually 4-6 ounces, with a water-to-espresso ratio of 3:1 or 4:1. 
  • Depending on personal taste, the ratio may be adjusted.
  • Pour hot water into your cup, which should be about 195-205 degrees Fahrenheit or 91-96 degrees Celsius.
  • If your espresso machine has a water spout, you can use the water from your machine.
  • After pouring the water, add the espresso shot on top. And that’s it.

Pros

  • It is stronger and fuller in taste.
  • Long Black has a high crema content.
  • It is rich in caffeine.

Cons

  • It requires an espresso machine which can be an expensive thing.

Conclusion

Americano and the Long Black coffee are two espresso-based beverages that have identical characteristics but are prepared differently. Americano is espresso with water added, giving it a stronger coffee flavor. On the other hand, Long Black is water with Espresso added, making it thicker and more flavorful. 

Even though they seem to be the same beverage, the result will yield two espresso drinks with slightly different flavors. If you like the taste of an Americano, you might like the Long Black’s stronger flavor.

The addition of hot water to an Americano is the only distinction between it and an Espresso. As a result, the flavor and size of the drink change, making Americanos larger, less intense, and smoother. If you’re looking for an intense, straightforward beverage, Espresso is the best option. 

Lungo is often mistaken for two other common coffee varieties because of its appearance. These are the long black coffee and Americano. They may appear similar and are usually served in similar containers, but they are different beverages with distinct flavors.

Although Lungo is simply an espresso that has been extracted longer and with more water, an Americano is prepared by adding hot water and one or two shots of Espresso. In contrast, a long black is prepared by adding Espresso and hot water. Lungo is the best and richest of the three beverages since, unlike the other two, the additional water is used to extract coffee from the beans rather than being added to the Espresso. However, Lungo, on the other hand, would be more bitter than Americano and long black.

Related