Coffee is often a hot debate over which type is the best. Perhaps it all boils down to preference, or maybe there is some truth to the debate. Two popular choices are regular drip brewed coffee and an Americano.
Let’s take a closer look at both of these options.
Of all the coffee brewing methods in circulation, drip-brewing is by far the most common. Drip coffee is made with either an automatic drip coffee maker or manually by doing a pour over. Both methods make use of gravity in order to pull water through a filter containing coffee grounds and into a carafe or cup.
The depth of flavor can be controlled by the type of beans, grind size, and coffee to water ratios. Drip coffee is typically a lighter-bodied coffee yet full of flavor.
Drip brew systems work by putting coffee grounds into a brew basket with a filter. Water is then added to a reservoir and heated. Once the water is heated, it passes through a showerhead to drip over the coffee grounds. The coffee is then captured in a carafe that sits beneath the brew basket.
An Americano is basically an espresso shot that is diluted with water. There are a few different ways to make this drink.
The first is by adding the hot water first and then pouring the espresso over the top. This results in the crema being intact on top of the coffee.
The second uses the espresso first and then dilutes it with hot water. This results in a cup that bares a resemblance to a black cup of coffee. It is considered the inferior option of the two as it breaks the espresso apart.
Originally the Americano was done by hand, however, over the course of time, machines have been designed to make this a more streamlined process.
Many people mistakenly believe that the brewing style of the coffee is what determines the strength of the coffee. The truth of the matter is that it’s the bean type, grind size, and quantity that largely affects caffeine content.
For instance, the espresso is a more finely ground coffee, and many people believe that the caffeine content is higher as a result. This simply isn’t true.
A single shot of espresso is 1.5 oz and contains 80 mg of caffeine. This is diluted by water to be served as an Americano meaning the total caffeine content is still 80 mg. In comparison, a regular cup of coffee is 8 oz and contains roughly 90-100 mg of caffeine.
As you can see, this is a fallacy. Since water makes up most of an Americano, the caffeine content is actually less than that of drip-brewed coffee.
These two types of coffee are brewed differently and as a result, there is a clear distinct taste difference. Many people lean one direction in favor of a particular brewing style. However, the truth of the matter is that the coffee beans offer most of the flavor and aromatic characteristics.
The actual taste difference is due to the particular method of roasting and the particular bean of coffee rather than the particular brew method being used.
Perhaps it all boils down to your personal taste preferences. For instance, some people like Espresso and others swear by their drip brew coffee maker.
It’s important to understand that an Americano is basically a watered-down espresso. Once that is understood it’s easier to discern the differences between the two distinctly different brewing methods.