types of coffee cups

Have you ever considered expanding your horizons when it comes to coffee? Maybe trying out new types, whether it’s changing brew style or roast level? If so, that’s great. However, did you know how many options you have?

Let’s take a closer look at the various kinds of coffee that are available. This way you’ll have a convenient list to use whenever you are ready to try something new.

Before discussing specific drinks, let’s first discuss brew methods and beans. Then we can explore variations of these brews while understanding what the differences are between them.

Coffee Beans

There are various species of coffee, similar to there being various species of fruit. However, there are two main species of coffee beans that are produced and used:

Arabica beans make up the majority of the coffee beans that are produced and sold today.

On the other hand, robusta beans are a bitter and stronger coffee bean that is produced. It’s found in espresso and for people who prefer stronger coffee.

Types of Coffee

The biggest differences between coffee comes from the different types you’re able to make. There are many different brew methods available that can offer unique flavors and experiences.

Coffee Basics

Black Coffee – This is coffee that is served directly from a carafe after it’s been brewed without anything being added to it. This means no cream or sugar.

Coffee with Milk/Cream and Sugar – The coffee is brewed in the same way that black coffee is. After the brewing is finished, dairy like milk or cream is added, alongside sugar or an artificial sweetener.

Espresso – An espresso brew is made by passing pressurized hot water through a filter that contains dark, finely round roasted beans using an espresso or cappuccino machine. A highly concentrated shot of coffee is then produced. This method is used as a base for a number of coffee drinks.

Brewing Methods

coffee brewing methods

Cold Press or Cold Brew Coffee – Steeped coffee in cold or room temperature water for a long period of time (in some cases, 12 hours).

Drip or Filtered Coffee – A brewing method where coffee is put in a paper filter and hot water is poured over it to allow it to drip below into a carafe.

French Press Coffee – In a french press, a plunger is used to press the coffee. This system traps the coffee grounds from the liquid.

Ice Coffee – Similar to a cold brew. Except a hot brew is used to prepare, and then it is cooled before serving.

Moka – Coffee is brewed inside a Moka pot. Pressurized steam is used to pass through the coffee.

Percolated Coffee – A percolator is a kind of pot that is used to brew coffee by continuously boiling through the grounds with gravity until the right strength is achieved.

Siphon or Vacuum Coffee – This method uses two chambers. The first is filled up with water. The bottom chamber is then heated up, which results in vapor pressure forcing the water to rise up into the top chamber, where it is then mixed with coffee grounds.

The water, which is now mixed with the coffee grounds is pulled down back into the lower chamber (due to the “vacuum” effect), via a filter which sits on the bottom part of the upper chamber. In turn, the bottom chamber is filled with brewed coffee.

Variants of Espresso

We discussed previously what espresso is. Now, we can explore the variants of the drink. Espresso forms the basis of many other coffee drinks. Therefore, it was important to outline the brew method.

Caffe Gommosa – This an espresso shot that gets poured on top of marshmallows.

Café Con Hielo or “Ice Shot” or “Coffee with Ice” – This drink is comprised of either a double shot or single shot of espresso that is poured on top ice. The drink is usually served with espresso in one cup and the ice in another.

Cortado – This is a shot of espresso that is mixed with a bit of warm milk in order to dilute its acidity.

Doppio – A fancy way of referring to a double shot of espresso served inside of a demitasse cup.

Espresso Con Panna – Whipped cream is added to the coffee.

Espresso Romano – This is a shot of espresso with a side of sliced lemon.

Guillermo – One or two shots of espresso is poured over lime slices. Sometimes it is served with some milk and on ice.

Ristretto or “Corto” or “Short Black” – Made using regular coffee grounds but extracted using only around half the amount of water. It is more syrupy and dense.

Lungo – the same idea as Ristretto, however, it uses more water instead of less.

Milk or Water Added

Antoccino – One shot of espresso is served in a 1:1 ratio with steamed milk.

Breve – This is an American variant of the latte, and made with steamed half-and-half and one shot of espresso with a frothy milk top.

Caffe Americano – This is made with hot water and one espresso shot. As suggested by the name, this is a beverage that is commonly consumed in the US.

Cafe au lait – A 1:1 ratio of scalded milk and strong coffee.

Cafe Zorro – A 1:1 ratio of water and a double shot of espresso.

Cappuccino – There are multiple layers to a cappuccino, which gives it extra texture and taste. Espresso makes up the first layer, and then a shot of steam milk is next to counter the bitter taste of coffee, and then topped with a foamy milk layer. It often has a sprinkle of chocolate powder on top.

Espressino – This is a drink made out of cocoa powder, steamed milk, and espresso.

Caffe Latte – Translated as coffee with milk. Usually, it is prepared in a Moka pot at home and poured inside of a mug that contains warm milk. However, at a coffee shop, a caffe latte is more likely to be one shot of espresso with foamed milk on top.

Flat White – Made out of milk and an espresso shot, with the difference being in the actual milk. Although foamy or frothy milk is used by a latte, smoother milk is used by a flat white, which is found in the lower part of the jug of milk.

Macchiato – This is espresso made with a small dose of milk. It is stronger but similar to a cappuccino.

Vienna Coffee – Espresso or coffee made with whipped cream, and on some occasions, milk is added.

Cups From Around the Globe

Black tie – A combination of a double shot of espresso and Thai Iced Tea (made out of spicy black tea).

Bombon – Spain made this beverage popular. It is equal parts condensed milk and espresso. Usually, it is served in a glass where condensed milk gets poured in, so that it sinks to the bottom of the glass. This creates a cream band that is in contrast and distinct from the dark coffee above it. Before drinking, stir well.

Cafe Cubano – This is a kind of espresso where sugar is put into the cup and then hot coffee is poured on top. Then the espresso is whipped to make it a slightly thicker and sweeter drink.

Caffe Creama – This beverage is twice the length of a lungo, and made using a coarser grind of coffee. It is made in the exact same way as an espresso, and waits for the blonde crema to rise to the top.

Ca Phe Da – This type of Vietnamese iced coffee is a drip coffee that is poured quickly over ice.

Egg Coffee – This is another Vietnamese drink that is made with Robusta coffee beans, condensed milk, sugar, and egg yolks.

Eiskaffee – This German beverage is made with vanilla ice cream and iced coffee.

Galao – This Portuguese drink is similar to the caffe latte, and is 3 parts foamed milk and 1 part espresso.

Irish Coffee – Made out of hot coffee that is mixed with sugar and Irish whiskey with a thick cream topping.

Kopi Susu – This is coffee with sweet condensed milk. It is allowed to cool so that the grounds of the coffee sink to the bottom.

Turkish Coffee – This is unfiltered coffee. This means the beans are very finely ground. A cezve is used to make the coffee.

The sugar, coffee, and water are all brought to a boil. As it starts to boil over and froth, the first third is evenly poured between the cups, and then the cezve is brought back on the heat to boil and froth again, and then the remaining coffee is poured into the cups.

Calories in Coffee

Calorie counts are one of the main talking points when comparing coffee.

Although a shot of espresso or plain black drip coffee might not have any calories, the same can’t be said for the ingredients that are often added to coffee.

Delicious Additions

Although there are die-hard black coffee drinkers, there are still many fans of coffee who prefer making their own dessert without realizing the high number of calories they are adding to their beverages.

The following are a few common ingredients that are commonly added to both espresso and coffee, along with their associated calories:

  • Fat-free milk: 10 calories per 2 Tbsp
  • Half-and-half: 37 calories per 2 Tbsp
  • Heavy whipping cream: 101 calories per 2 Tbsp
  • Whole milk: 19 calories per 2 tablespoons
    2 percent milk: 15 calories per 2 Tbsp
  • Sugar: 16 calories per 1 tsp

To put this into perspective a bit, we will do a few comparisons. If you put 2 tablespoons of 2% milk and 1 teaspoon of sugar into your coffee that will be around 36 calories (with drip brew coffee being about 5 calories itself).

You will be up to 72 calories if you decide to have a second cup. That is about the equivalent of eating a sugar cookie and will take around 10 to 15 minutes of walking to burn it off.

However, many people choose to use a lot more milk than just 2 tablespoons, and that can make a big difference.


How many different kinds of coffee drinks have you tried? There were several on this list that I haven’t had a chance to try yet.

Did we leave a coffee drink off the list? If so, let us know in the comments!

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Clayton Dylan
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