What is Espresso?

What is Espresso

What is Espresso? Espresso is the “Daniel Day-Lewis” of the various coffees acknowledged as the greatest and a standard for every coffee to aim toward.

Espresso is “THE” consumed beverage in the entire world, let alone the US.

However, jarring as it may, many people don’t have a clear idea of what precisely an espresso is, amalgamating various concepts when asked about it, even though the chances are they are consuming a minimum of 2 cups of espresso per day.

“Espresso is a unique brewing method that significantly boosts the consistency of the coffee beans by selecting a variety of different elements such as a darker roasting method, high-pressured battering where water shoots through the refined ground coffee beans, filtered grinding. In addition, an espresso also has a bittersweet flavorsome taste and a foamy layer of crema. “

Espresso is predominantly known for its substantial addition in the more popular coffees such as Latte, Cappuccino, etc.

Since the discovery of coffee in general, espresso has been an instant hit. After the rise from the various cafes and coffee houses, it even hit bigger as now it is a popular breakfast sensation found in numerous domestic families across the US.

To go deep into the knowledge of espresso, our team asked a simple question to random people walking through the street, “ What is espresso, and can you add a little more light to what it actually is?

Not to our surprise, 9/10 individuals answered identically, stating, isn’t it a kind of coffee bean we use to make other coffee? Which is fundamentally wrong.

Hence, today we will talk about everything we do know about espresso, from its origin to its overall impact on our cultural revolution, common misconceptions, and more.

What Is Espresso?

Espresso is a unique brewing process of making a concentrated coffee made from when we utilize the hot water and force blend it thoroughly with finely selected ground coffee beans.

What is Espresso

Mouthwatering espresso coffee is made with neons of a wide variety of coffee beans and roasts (Diverse degrees).

The fundamental distinction between espresso and coffee is the thickness and richness generated by the espresso due to a higher concentration of suspended and disintegrated solids.

Espresso has an extensive caffeine content per unit compared to other coffee beverages thanks to the smaller serving size than others even though it’s not much more than a mug of standard brewed coffee.

A typical 1-shot espresso serving of espresso contains 28gm / 1 -ounce, which rounds up 65mg caffeine count, whereas a standard serving of drip coffee usually contains 65-120mg (National Coffee Association)caffeine content which is much less.

This espresso is bitter in general and has a rich, bold, robust aftertaste which is in large use as the base for more famous and well-known coffee delicacies, such as caffe latte, cappuccino, americano, Caffe mocha, and so on.

Coffee is considered as an espresso if it has –

  • 200ºF water temperature
  • 9 bars of pressure during extraction
  • 25-30 seconds of extraction time

By checking the consistency of those criteria, you can judge an espresso machine if it’s imperfect, good, okay, or excellent.

“Espresso is a magic of chemistry in a small cup.”- Andrea Illy.

Dr. Jamie Foster, a well-renowned mathematician and co-author of the research from the University of Portsmouth said this about espresso, “The common understanding is that if you want a more powerful cup of coffee, your coffee should be finely grounded. This is known because fine fields indicate that the surface section of ​​the coffee bean gets in contact with water, which suggests a robust coffee should.”

Dr. Chris Hendon (aka Dr. Coffee) shared his valuable opinion about espresso and stated that “One approach to achieve extraction optimization and reproducibility is to apply thicker crushed and slightly less water, the other is to reduce the mass of coffee simply.”

What is Not An Espresso?

Espresso Isn’t a Coffee Bean.

The common misconception of the majority of the drinkers is that espressos are coffee beans which is not the case. In fact, it’s the polar opposite. It doesn’t matter what sort of coffee beans you use at the end of the day; every coffee bean can be transformed into a heavenly cup of espresso. So pick any variety of coffee beans you want; all coffee beans can be turned into espresso beans. Furthermore, all beans that are labeled as “espresso” can ultimately be brewed as a regular solid and rich black coffee.

Coffee bags are labeled that way because many roasters have a particular blend of beans that they prefer to roast to bring out the best of the beans while brewing espresso.

Espresso Isn’t a Roasting Style.

Almost all of the bags of “Espresso Beans” are flown with pre-roasted darken beans; however, just because it was roasted beforehand doesn’t seem to make it a definite espresso roast.

Suppose the espresso roast was the same as all, then there wouldn’t have been different variations invented. But, instead, numerous baristas roast their espresso mixture even darker than the regularly ordered coffees since the darker the blend, the more consistent the coffee is. Ultimately far exceeds the lighter ones.

Thus, an excellent cup of espresso is consistently recognized for the intense depth of flavors plus the rich aroma and consistency it brings.

The Origins of Espresso

As coffee made its initial start in the early 20th century in the land of Europe till it was glorified and commercialized in the US. The same was the case for espresso, as it was first created in Venice, Italy, when the machinery evolution was in the making.

The beverage was created by a famous businessman named Luigi Bezzera while tweaking various methods to make coffee brew faster.

The creation story for espresso can be called a bizarre one as in 1903; he was doing business in a manufacturing company. The late hours in the business meant a ton of caffeine consumption but brewing coffee at that was a long process that made him agitated.

So he came to a realization to boost the preparation process and cut-off time entirely; after multiple tries, he finally discovered that adding steam pressure to the machine reduced the time it took to construct the brew and created a much rich, more potent drink.

The process particularly drew out the best qualities of the coffee beans.

He named the new process “Fast Coffee Machine.” Hence, taking the fast in English, it came to be known as Italian “Espresso.”

Even though, as much of a genius and a revolutionist as Luigi Bezzera was, he didn’t possess the marketing skills to promote this decade’s deciding innovation, “Fast Coffee Machine.” Hence, every possible move to spread this machine failed miserably.

After some time, in 1905, Luigi Bezzera encountered Desidero Pavoni, who later became a part-owner of the company, and then things moved. In a blink of an eye, Desidero Pavoni’s name became engraved with the history of espresso.

In the end, even so, Luigi Bezzera was the original inventor of the well-renowned brew; it came into the spotlight thanks to the creative and masterful marketing of Desidero Pavoni.

Who Is Espresso For?

Espresso is favored generally by ever-so-busy employees who have to put considerable long hours into their work or gym enthusiasts who want to boost their workout performance. However, many people do drink this strong coffee later in midday and sometimes into the early evenings.

Espresso is primarily chosen over other coffee in breakfast due to the espresso’s high caffeine in 1-shot and low calorie count. In addition, this coffee can re-energize you in a heartbeat and will remain in your system for a significant amount of time till you achieve your goals.

Espresso typically doesn’t contain a large distribution of caffeine like other famous cups of joes such as latte, cappuccino, and many more, even though it is more vigorous and enriched in flavor.

Furthermore, a mouthwatering cup of espresso is drunk mainly by individuals looking to enhance their mood, concentration, and long-term memory.

Making college students, office workers, late-night shift holders the prime targets for espresso.

There have been many reports stating that espresso can also decrease the hazard of stroke and type-II diabetes.

Pros and Cons of Espresso


After constant research on espresso, it has been discovered that drinking the beverage can significantly increase an individual’s long-term memory. For example, a student prefers a cup of espresso just before an upcoming intense exam.

A small dose of espresso can immensely boost an individual’s energy. This heightened energy makes it a lot easier for the brain and makes the mind focus on day-to-day responsibilities.

After copious tests, it has been found that espresso contains a high degree of antioxidants.

Many people prefer drinking an espresso right before conducting a physical exercise session to enhance their performance.

It’s surprising as it may be, but espresso has a massive benefit going for them, and that is a lower calorie count in general.

An article from a renowned journalist has proved that taking a considerable amount of espresso can lessen women’s risk of having a stroke.

Espresso can help you get an intense power enhancement for the body to endure a strenuous workout session. If individuals can push themselves to do more workouts, they can ultimately cut out a large chunk of weight.

Espresso can massively help you to improve your digestion system. It is all due to the anti-inflammatory qualities of the espresso.

In the land of SweetValley(Almost every nation globally), where the menacing presence of diabetes dominates it, it comes as a great astonishment that espresso can assist in decreasing the risk of diabetes.

The caffeine content in espresso is a potent stimulant. Espresso is the type of stimulant that can ultimately aid you in clearing up any foggy mood swings. But, on the other hand, that can pose a threat to bringing down your mood.

Even though people prefer espresso for its momentary energy boost, many people choose this glorious cup of coffee just to experience this delicious cup of joe and ease up and relax.


Because espressos are served in a small portion in a considerably tiny cup, it lacks quantity, unlike the other coffees. So, if you want to consume a proper cup of coffee, then espresso might disappoint you in that department.

You can’t make espresso without the assistance of an espresso machine set which can cost an average household a lot of bucks compared to manual brew coffee equipment.

Not everybody likes to drink espresso as it is bitter and astringent in nature. So, if you are not a regular fan of espresso, the chances of liking the beverage in the first go can be slim to none.

Same as other coffees, mass caffeine consumption can lead you to face severe fatigue and muscle breakdowns. So, it’s essential not to go over 2 cups per day.

A large number of espresso consumptions per day can invite anxiety and sleep deprivation, leading to insomnia in the long haul.

Different Kinds of Espresso Drinks

There is a wide variety of drinks that can be made from the blend of espresso. Here are some top-selling and seek-out espresso drinks throughout the world:


Ristretto means “Restrict” in Italian. A ristretto is a considerably much stronger shot of espresso, which is made from a more refined selection of coffee grounds and half the amount of water.


Lungo means “Long” in Italian. A lungo shot is almost the exact same as ristretto with just a hint of adjustment. However, we use the same amount of finer coffee grounds with much more water in the Lungo shot.


Doppio means “Double” in Italian. A doppio or double shot is made with an enormous amount of selected coffee grounds than others. These specific espresso shots are pulled with the help of a double shot filter inside the portafilter.


The most famous coffee beverage, “Cappuccino,” is made with 33-34% espresso, 33-34% steamed hot milk, and 33-34% milk foam. You can also alter the ratio to your liking. For example, a version exists with less milk, which is also called “Dry Cappuccino.”

Latte/ Caffe Latte

Called the king of coffee, “Caffe Latte,” also known as latte, is a sensation in the coffee world, let alone espresso. A perfect cup of latte consists of 33-34% espresso, 66-67% stemmed hot milk, and a light layer of micro-foam. But, of course, you can also alter the ratio to your liking. For example, a version exists with double shots of espresso or many varieties of an upper layer such as cocoa powder, cinnamon, MM’s, or brown sugar.


Compared to other compact and robust bitterness-filled coffees, mocha is entirely different as “Mocha” is known as a sweet coffee drink made with a latte with the addition of chocolate syrup, cocoa powder, caramel, or peppermint syrup.


Another contender for the crown, a cup of americano, has the similar kick of a regular black coffee with a slight alteration of added hot water to a single or double shot espresso. This mixture results in a diverse flavor profile from traditional black coffee.


An affogato is more of a desert compared to a coffee. This mouthwatering delicious dessert consists of a pouring shot of espresso over a scoop of ice cream.


A classic cortado has a ratio of 50% espresso and 50% steamed milk. Unlike other drinks the milk is only stemmed, not foamy or frothy like other coffee variants.


Galao is another sweet drink that originated in Portugal. This creamy Portuguese drink is made with 25% espresso and 75% milk foam.

Red Eye

Red-eye is an extremely strong and highly concentrated caffeinated drink. Red-eye consists of a brew of black coffee topped with a single shot of espresso.

Black Eye

A black eye is an even more potent variant of red-eye. A black eye consists of a brew of hot black coffee topped with a double shot of espresso.

Caffeine Content in Espresso

A standard espresso consists of 160 mg caffeine content.

Despite not being the case, everyone is quite knowledgeable that espresso is highly concentrated caffeine, depending on your espresso consumption. The question was raised in the first place because the beverage is usually served only with a solid concentration of pulled shot coffee; however, it is served in a smaller serving than coffee. In general, it consists of much less caffeine than standard brewed coffee. One, double and triple shot drinks and mixed drinks like black-eyes can up the caffeine level significantly.

For example, A single shot has close to 29-100 mg of caffeine, which is much less than a latte(154 mg) or cappuccino(154-156 mg). However, the double shot has close to 58-185 mg of caffeine, which is much more than latte or cappuccino.

Espresso at Starbucks

One can call Starbucks the place where espresso evolved. You can find four sizes of espresso in Starbucks:

  • Solo/ Single Shot (0.75 oz)
  • Doppio/ Double Shot (1.5 oz)
  • Triple/ Three Shot (2.25 oz)
  • Quad/ Four Shot (3 oz)

You can find the espressos at the bottom of the menus in the list of drinks.

There are various roast and caffeine alternatives for espresso: blonde or decaf. You can order it with 50% decaf, 33% decaf, and 66% decaf if you want lighter caffeine. For example, if you order a doppio and ask for 50% decaf, you’ll get one espresso shot caffeinated and the other half decaf.

Additional Facts About The Espresso

  • Espresso is both a drink and a brewing process.
  • A single-shot/ Solo espresso requires approximately 50 coffee beans.
  • November 23 is the National Espresso Day!
  • Espresso machines handle 132 pounds per square inch of pressure to extract coffee.
  • The Italian government regulates espresso.
  • As of 2015, astronauts residing on the International Space Station can brew fresh espresso on board.
  • Brewed espresso has 2.5% fat, whereas filtered coffee contains 0.6% fat.

To know more facts about espresso, visit National Coffee.


John Reeves

Kevin Pietersen

Hello, Kevin here, Wispy Pick’s Co-Writer. We go through and guide you through various Coffee Machines and Accessories for a great morning.

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