A traditional French Latte, as the name suggests, is Milkier than its stronger Italian cousin the Cappuccino. A common misconception is that the stretched milk consistency changes between these two beverages, but this is simply incorrect. What defines the Latte is a lesser-concentrated ratio of Espresso to Stretched Milk in comparison to the Cappuccino (ie. Milkier). Traditional Lattes are served in a double 16oz (465ml) ceramic mug.
Building a quality Latte should be handled with the care and attention to detail that it deserves. Stretched milk is added to perfectly extracted Espresso to create a dreamy combination of coffee and milk. FIX! Cowbell Espresso is designed to cut through the milk to add just the right amount of coffee flavour in your Latte.
Milk should be “stretched” not steamed. What’s the difference?
As discussed in the Cappuccino description, steamed milk is simply aerated milk, you know the sound, you’ve heard it in Restaurants your whole life, it sounds like someone blowing bubbles into a pitcher of milk, this is wrong, wrong, wrong!
Milk must be stretched gently! Using the Espresso machine’s steam-wand placed just below the surface of the milk, the natural reaction of the fat in the milk to expand is accentuated through heat and pressure to sweeten. At around 100 degrees Fahrenheit (starting to feel warm to the touch), this process ceases and stretching beyond this point is futile as it simply adds bubbles with no further purpose. The skilled Barista now “rolls” the milk to ensure the consistency of the steamed milk is the same throughout the steam pitcher and removes any large bubbles, stopping the process well before the milk is scalded or loses its natural sweetness. The result is a micro-bubbled stretched milk with almost a “chrome-like” reflection.
Much emphasis has been placed on “Latte-art”, but really, the emphasis should be on the quality of the milk, because without quality steamed milk, Latte-art is not possible.