What is Caffe Americano & Where Did it Come From?

So you’re questioning what is an Americano coffee, or what is “Caffe Americano” to use its proper Italian title? It’s an important distinction, by the way, to state that we’re talking about Americano coffee here. If you were simply asking what’s an Americano, the response to that is that it’s a mixed drink, which I’ll get to when speaking about where Americano originated from.

Ah, I fancy a cocktail now, it’s three in the afternoon however, and it’s a weekday, much better not. Also, I don’t keep alcohol here in the studio, which is most likely a good idea. I have generous amounts of coffee though naturally, which is also a good idea.

Anway, as well as responding to the question about what is an Americano, I’m also going to tell you (and show) how to make a Caffe Americano at home with or without an espresso machine, and I’m likewise going to get on my soapbox and describe why most declares concerning the origins of Americano merely can’t be correct!

What is an Americano Coffee?

OK, so I’ll simply jump straight in and answer this question, as it’s probably why you came to this post in the very first place. What’s Americano coffee, or Caffe Americano, is an actually simple concern to answer– it’s espresso mixed with hot water.

It implies American (style) coffee, in Italian. Italy is, of course, the birthplace of espresso, and Italians would generally consume their coffee black as lungo, espresso, or ristretto, or with milk as coffee, caffe latte, or Caffe macchiato. There wasn’t originally a name in Italy for what it’s called when you dilute espresso with water, in truth, I’m sure there was, however I do not understand any Italian swear words;–RRB-.

See also  Understanding the Process: Part 1 Natural/Dry

Italians at some point discovered that Americans like bigger cups of more diluted black coffee, so the term “Americano” was coined, which implies espresso blended with hot water.

If you’ve checked out that this originated from American soldiers during the second world war requesting their espresso to be topped up with hot water, this is a myth that I will well and truly bust, shortly. This isn’t just a viewpoint, by the way, I have some solid proof that makes it really clear that this old chestnut about the history of Americano isn’t right.

Prior to the invention of the Americano, the three standard black coffees that you ‘d be served by the majority of Italian baristas, are all just different espresso ratios, indicating the ratio of ground coffee to espresso.

What is called an “Espresso” is usually an espresso plucked a ratio of around 1-2 (for example 17 grams of ground coffee beans to 34 grams of espresso), while a ristretto is a restricted shot of espresso pulled at a ratio typically of 1:1, and a lungo is a long shot of espresso, pulled at a ratio of (usually) 1:3.

All “Caffe Americano” implies, is to water down espresso with warm water for a more “American style” coffee.

How does Americano vary from comparable kinds of coffee?

Some would state that Americano coffee should be made in a specific method order to distinguish this coffee from similar coffees that are made with espresso and hot water, but I state otherwise. In my humble viewpoint, Americano is the initial Italian label for watering down espresso with hot water.

See also  How Much Caffeine is in Club-Mate?

There are other espresso-based beverages that have been produced considering that the Caffe Americano, which are also labels for espresso blended with warm water, namely the long black, which is a more modern-day take on Americano in which the espresso is added to hot water, for a more extreme taste.

Naturally then, if a coffee shop puts long black on the menu along with Americano, in order to differentiate the Long black from the Americano, they would typically make the Americano espresso first and water 2nd, and sometimes there are other distinctions such as the number of shots used and/or the volume of the beverage.

However does this mean, then, that Americano must be made by pulling the shot initially and then putting the hot water into the espresso? No, not as far as I’m worried. Americano simply indicates espresso blended with warm water to make a more “American design” coffee, that’s it.

If you wish to call it long black if it’s made with the warm water first, then that’s great, call it whatever you like, call it Dave if you want, it doesn’t bother me, however in my modest viewpoint, if you blend espresso with hot water, you’re making an Americano.

How to make Americano in your home

The real origins of Americano– Nothing to do with WW2 The minute you start searching for information on Americano, you’ll discover people discussing the second world war, with American soldiers sent to Italy during the war, not having the ability to manage the intensity of espresso and asking for it to be diluted with hot water, which Italian Baristas ended up calling”Caffe Americano”or “American style coffee” as a result. In my YouTube video above, I stated that I didn’t think this to be the reality, as it just didn’t ring true to me, however I’ve considering that made a discovery that proves that this definitely is a myth.

Before I came across this evidence that this story is a misconception, I didn’t think it was quite right for a number of reasons.

The first reason was I thought that definitely American soldiers wouldn’t have been travelers in Italy during the 2nd world war, hanging out being in coffee shops? I did some digging, and proved myself wrong on this point, as I mentioned in the video above.

It turns out that some American GIs had in fact commented in letters house, that they did in fact seem like travelers. Likewise, a booklet had actually been handed to United States and British soldiers, called “The Soldier’s Handbook to Italy”, which apparently was composed like a tourists guide book to Italy for soldiers, which indicated that soldiers may have in fact been doing touristy things like sitting in coffee shop’s drinking coffee.

I still didn’t think this Americano origins story to be true, however, simply due to the fact that I’m fairly particular from the research study I’ve done that American Baristas would have already penned the expression “Caffe Americano” prior to the 2nd world war.

The common story told about the origins of Americano would have us believe that world war 2 was the first time Americans were going to Italy and making their drinking preferences understood. This isn’t true, though. American tourist had been going on in Italy for a long time by this point, and as I mentioned earlier, the Campari & & sweet vermouth Americano mixed drink was named after American travelers way back in the 1860s.

So as much as this point, I had actually been working on the presumption that “Caffè Americano” was probably currently a thing before the second world war.

However, I then decided that I required to learn more about this soldier’s guide to Italy, and what it said about coffee, I was fascinated– but I could not find any images online of the inside pages, so I wound up buying an original copy. When I received it and offered it a read, I made a couple of discoveries.

Soldiers guide to Italy

Soldiers guide to Italy

Firstly, I found that this isn’t quite the tourism guide that I’ve seen it described as. It’s in fact a really useful, well-thought guide telling soldiers how to finest deal with their upcoming project to Italy. Yeah there are a few touristy paragraphs in there for sure, however the majority of it is very useful guidance, along the lines of don’t catch the clap, do not be fooled by relatively “simple females” asking you for a cigarette, as they might be spies, and don’t show yourself up by getting intoxicated, oh and do not attempt it on with “great Italian ladies” or you may regret it, or you may not live to regret it, is really the warning.

The most stunning discovery for me, however, is this:

Whats Americano

Whats Americano

< img class="aligncenter wp-image-20355"src ="https://how-to-brew.coffee/wp-content/uploads/2022/06/what-is-caffe-americano-where-did-it-come-from.png"alt ="Whats Americano"width ="

681″height =” 143 “srcset =”https://how-to-brew.coffee/wp-content/uploads/2022/06/what-is-caffe-americano-where-did-it-come-from.png 1227w, https://how-to-brew.coffee/wp-content/uploads/2022/06/what-is-caffe-americano-where-did-it-come-from-1.png 300w, https://how-to-brew.coffee/wp-content/uploads/2022/06/what-is-caffe-americano-where-did-it-come-from-2.png 1024w, https://coffeeblog.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2022/05/Whats-Americano-768×161.png 768w” sizes=”(max-width: 681px) 100vw, 681px”> Coffee was banned in Italy throughout the Second World War As you can see from the text above, which you’ll discover on page 12, Americano doesn’t have its roots in the 2nd world war with American soldiers ordering an espresso and wanting it to be watered down with hot water– because there was no espresso in Italy during world war 2, coffee was prohibited!

This is a revelation, as is the truth that this info appears to have actually been nearly forgotten. At the time of writing, none of the most apparent coffee-related sites seem to cover this, and even big mainstream sites like Wikipedia seem devoid of this information. Wierd.

If you have a quick google (at the time of writing, this may have altered by the time you’re reading this) for “coffee prohibited in Italy” you’ll discover information on the initial Stance on coffee by the Catholic Church in Italy during the 16th century, and various other reports of historic coffee restrictions in numerous nations, however nothing about this ban of coffee in Italy during World War 2.

I needed to dig remarkably deep (even having to download these old made things called “PDFs) to get to the history of why this happened, again, it wasn’t readily available in the locations I ‘d anticipate it to be, however it seems that this ban on coffee was Mussolini’s reaction to an embargo enforced on Italy by the League of Nations after the invasion of Ethiopia in 1935.

Mussolini responded by strengthening Italy’s stance on being self-sufficient and basically appears to have decided that they might simply use Italian-grown grain for practically whatever.

The only coffee being consumed in Italy during this time, it seems, is percentages of coffee that Italian soldiers on the cutting edge were in some cases able to smuggle back to families, and instantaneous coffee that American soldiers had taken over with them. In fact, there are stories from Italians who matured throughout that time who had their very first taste of coffee thanks to American soldiers who gave them some of their instantaneous coffee.

So, to conclude– Americano is espresso blended with warm water, OK– I might have made this post much shorter, but 7 words is a bit on the brief side– and I’ve ideally offered you lots of other interesting details, including how to make an Americano in the house, and the fact that the typically shared story on the origins of Americano is a myth, my work here is done, I’m off to make a mixed drink. OK, not really, I’m not that rock ‘n roll;–RRB-.

Life resembles a box of chocolates, so join my Brew Time list, register for my YouTube Channel, end up being a recognized coffee botherer (Patreon advocate), try my coffee at The Coffeeworks (usage discount rate code coffeebotherers), follow me on Twitter & & Instagram, follow the coffeeblog FaceBook page, which’s all I need to state about that.

This article firstly appeared at Coffee Blog – The UK Specialty Coffee Blog – For Lovers of REAL Coffee!