Just What is an “Americano”?

Coffee is such a universally popular beverage, that it’s difficult to keep up on all the different ways it’s prepared and served. Are the beans Arabica or Robusta? Were they roasted traditionally or cooked by infrared light? Were they ground fine or for drip coffee makers? These are just a small sampling of the questions that can arise when coffee production is seriously discussed.

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Same thing with how it’s served. They are dozens of different coffee drinks offered in coffee shops the world over, so how are we supposed to know what each one features? Unless you are curious enough to continually experiment with your choice of daily java, you may just have to research the possibilities or simply ask your local barista to explain how they make the various coffee drinks they serve.

Americano coffeeWhich brings us to ask, “Just what is an Americano?” Americanos, or Café Americanos as they are known by their proper name, are a simple mixture of espresso coffee and hot water. The recipe can vary from barista to barista, but the basic Americano remains pretty much the same: 2 shots of espresso coffee combined with 2–4 ounces of hot water. Rumor has it that the Americano was invented by American GIs in WWII. Apparently, they found the double espressos they were served in Europe way too strong and bitter, so they deluded the mixture with a few ounces of hot water and discovered it tasted much like the coffee they were used to getting back home – hence, the Americano.

And, in case you have no idea what espresso coffee is, relax. Espresso is just strong black coffee made by forcing steam through finely ground coffee beans. It is usually served in small 1-2 ounce cups, with a lemon peel placed on the side or rubbed around the rim of the espresso cup.

Well, there you have it – the answer to the old Americano question. Try one for yourself with some deeply rich Sisel Kaffé Gourmet Dark Roast Espresso and a couple of shots of hot water. Our Gourmet Dark Roast Espresso features our Panamanian Boquete Gesha bean, which provides a great foundation for a flavorful Americano.

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