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What Is


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The flat white is a newcomer, breaking its way into the coffee world in only the last few years or so. Unlike a cappuccino or a latte who are established friends of our taste buds, this coffee type is relatively new in our homes and coffee shops, but what is a flat white?

Flat white coffee

What is a flat white coffee?

A flat white is a blend of micro-foamed milk poured over a single or double shot of espresso. This microfoam is steamed milk infused with air, to create a smooth and velvety texture and creamy taste. Precise pouring and steaming of the microfoam is essential in making a flat white.

flat white coffee

Flat white origin

The origins of the flat white coffee have caused a strong debate. Both Australia and New Zealand claim to have invented the flat white in the 1980s. The answer is still unclear and it’s likely that the flat white evolved in both countries.

flat white coffee

Where is the flat white from? Its origin is a source of hot debate! Both Australia and New Zealand claim to have invented the drink in the 1980s, but it probably evolved in both countries.

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What are the different understandings of the drink?

There are many things that go into creating the flat white coffee. What makes a flat white depends very much on where you get your coffee from and the individual barista. Baristas serve their milks in different ways, thick, frothy, foamy. Piping hot, or lukewarm. Others like to remain very traditional and keep the consistency of their milk to coffee ratios to the traditional measurements.

flat white coffee

Flat white vs latte – what is the difference?

Whilst a flat white coffee and a latte are both espresso-based drinks, they are in fact quite different. The most noticeable difference is the size. The ideal serving size for a flat white is a 160-165ml tulip cup—much smaller than the glass size typically used for lattes and cappuccinos.

This has an impact on the coffee to milk ratio, which naturally affects the taste. As the flat white is a more compact drink, the ratio of coffee to milk is much higher than in a latte. The espresso in a flat white coffee taste stronger than in a latte, even though the same amount is used. Lattes simply dilute the espresso more.

When it comes to a flat white vs latte, which will you choose? If the latte has won your heart, try one of our NESCAFÉ® Latte.

Now you know what a flat white is, why not explore what a macchiato is next?

flat white coffee

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