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Clever Bean: Deciphering Coffee Lingo

If you’d like to learn your cappuccinos from your cortados, then read on…


Espresso – A 1oz of shot of liquid gold, espresso is the basis for almost every decent coffee beverage and has three parts: the crema, the body and the heart. The crema is the silky foam that settles on top of the espresso, and is the mark of top notch beans.


Double Espresso – Not for the faint-hearted, this is a 2oz delivery of rich, dark caffeine.

Americano – This is espresso that’s been diluted with hot water for a longer, smoother drinking experience. Can be served black (no milk) or white (with milk).

Macchiato – A tasty twist on a classic, this is espresso which has been ‘stained’ with equal parts foamed milk.




Cappuccino – Possibly the most famous coffee of all, the humble cappuccino is 1/3 espresso, 1/3 steamed milk and 1/3 foam, topped off with a dusting of cocoa.

Latte – The perfect choice for a leisurely coffee date, the latte consists of a little espresso, a lot of milk and touch of foam on top. Delicious enjoyed as is, but also yummy when joined by a little flavoured syrup.

Mocha – The holy trinity of coffee, chocolate and milk, this delectable treat is often topped with whipped cream.

Flat White – Similar in stature to the cappuccino, but with latte proportions of milk.

Cortado – An espresso “cut” (from the Spanish cortar) with warm milk to lessen acidity. Perfect for those who want the hit of espresso but can’t quite tolerate the intense flavour.

Café Au Lait – The staple of Parisian cafes, this is not to be confused with a latte, as strong coffee or espresso is paired with an equal ratio of scalded milk for a short, strong coffee.

Affogato – The ultimate after dinner treat, affogato comes from the Italian word for ‘drowned’, as a scoop of ice cream (usually vanilla) is drenched in hot espresso. Simply magnifico.

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