The Ultimate Guide To Different Types Of Coffee Drinks

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Are you confused by the all the different types of coffee drinks to choose from? Or perhaps you are curious to try some new coffee types? Well you have come to the right place!

In this article we list all the different coffee types you can order at your local Cafe, or make at home. Not only do we share the coffee drink types, we explain how to make and serve them too.

Whether you love espresso coffee drinks, brewed coffee types, hot or iced coffee types, you are sure to discover a new favourite in our comprehensive list of different types of coffees.

cups of coffee with text overlay "all types of coffee drinks explained"

How Many Different Types Of Coffee Drinks Are There?

On researching this article it became clear very quickly that there are probably hundreds of different styles of coffee around the world.

Every country in the world has taken coffee and customised it to their own taste to create an incredible array of different coffees.

And there are some seriously delicious coffee recipes to try when you travel.

So whilst it isn’t possible to list all the different types of coffee drink styles, we tried to list as many of the coffee types in Australia you are likely to see.

In order to simplify the list we have divided the different kinds of coffee drink into five categories:

  • Black coffee drinks
  • White coffee styles
  • Iced coffee drinks
  • Cold coffee types and
  • Alcoholic types of coffee.

So let’s get into it and take a look at all the different types of coffee in Australia.

Different Types Of Black Coffee Drinks

The basis of all types of coffee is black coffee. When water is combined with ground coffee it produces what we all know as black coffee.

And yet, such a simple combination can be prepared in many different ways depending on the type of coffee maker, method of brewing and the order in which the ingredients are combined.

Below are some of the most common black coffee types (there are many, many more).

Espresso

Espresso coffee originates from Italy and was introduced to Australia in the 1930s. It has since become the predominant style of coffee made in the country.

All espresso drinks are created by the process of forcing hot water through finely ground coffee at high pressure with an espresso machine.

Enjoyed straight and used as the base for many types of espresso drinks, it is a small thick, concentrated coffee drink with a distinct crema (creamy foam) on top. Also known as a short black in Australia.

Ingredients: 1 shot of espresso (30 ml)
Served in: Demitasse ceramic cup

two glasses of espresso on white tray
Espresso coffee

Americano

Thought to have been created in WW2 by American soldiers based in Italy, an Americano is a combination of espresso and hot water.

Note the number of espresso shots and quantity of water is completely flexible, but generally start with a ratio of 1:2 espresso to water and add more water if preferred.

To make an americano, pull one shot of espresso into your cup, then top with hot (not boiling) water.

If you are wondering what the difference between long black and americano is, the key difference is the order in which the ingredients are added to the glass.

By adding the water on top of the espresso, there is noticeably less crema on an americano coffee.

Ingredients: 1 shot of espresso (30 ml) and 60 ml hot water
Served in: Small ceramic cup

Doppio

A doppio, which means “double” in Italian, is the term used for a double espresso coffee drink.

So just as it sounds, it is simply 2 shots of espresso poured into a cup and enjoyed straight.

Ingredients: 2 shots of espresso (60 ml)
Served in: Demitasse cup

Filter Coffee

Filter coffee is the term used to describe coffee brewed by passing hot water through ground coffee held in a paper or mesh filter into a jug or mug.

It is also known as drip coffee or pour over coffee. Popular methods for brewing filter coffee include Manual Pourover, Chemex, Syphon and Batch Brewers.

The ratio of coffee grounds to water will vary depending on the method used, but a useful starting point is the SCA Golden Cup Standard of 1:18 parts coffee to water.

pouring brewed coffee from chemex into glass

Long Black

Originating in Australia and New Zealand, the long black is considered a more concentrated and aromatic version of an Americano coffee drink.

It is brewed by adding 100-120 ml of hot (not boiling) water to your cup first, then extracting a double shot of espresso over the hot water.

A good long black has a distinctive layer of crema on top.

Expert tip: Do not use boiling water. The ideal water temperature is around 70C.

Ingredients: 2 shots of espresso and 100 ml of hot water
Served in: Small ceramic cup

Red Eye

The Red Eye is a strong coffee style high in caffeine thanks to its combination of espresso and drip coffee.

The quantities vary according to taste, but the method is to add a single shot of espresso to a cup of brewed coffee.

And if that isn’t enough to keep you awake, try a Black Eye – 2 shots of espresso added to your cup of drip coffee.

Ingredients: 1 shot of espresso and brewed coffee
Served in: 240 ml coffee cup or mug

Ristretto

The term ristretto is Italian for “restricted”. A ristretto coffee drink is a short shot of espresso extracted for less time than a regular espresso shot.

The result is a bolder, more concentrated and often less bitter espresso coffee drink.

Ingredients: 1 shot of espresso (20 ml)
Served in: Demitasse cup

Different Types Of Coffee With Milk

For lovers of milk based coffee drinks, there is no shortage of ways to combine the two ingredients.

In fact milk based coffees are the most common types of coffee orders across the country.

Below are just some of the types of coffee with milk you can order at your local coffee shop or make at home.

Note these are all hot coffee drinks with milk – we cover iced and cold coffee drinks separately.

Café Bombon

Decadent, sweet and utterly delicious, the Cafe Bombon is a Spanish coffee drink and has many similarities to the Cafe Sua Da from Vietnam (see below).

Made with espresso and sweetened condensed milk, the Cafe Bombon is an intensely sweet caffeine hit that is hard not to love, but not in a pure espresso coffee drink kind of way.

To make a cafe bombon, add 30 ml of sweetened condensed milk to the bottom of your glass.

Pour a shot of espresso over the top and stir occasionally while drinking to combine.

Ingredients: 1 shot of espresso, sweetened condensed milk
Served in: 90 – 100 ml glass

Café Breve

Popular in the US, the breve combines espresso with frothed half and half (a mixture of milk and cream also known as half cream).

Similar to a latte, it is a richer and creamier coffee drink thanks to the higher fat content in the half and half, but difficult to find on Cafe menus in Australia.

Half and half milk is around 10-12% fat, so to make it at home from scratch simply combine full cream milk with an equal quantity of single cream. Shake to combine.

To make a café breve at home, pull a single shot of espresso into your cup. Steam half and half milk and pour over the espresso with about 1cm of foam on top.

Ingredients: 1 shot of espresso, half and half, 1cm foam
Served in: 150 ml coffee cup

Cappuccino

One of the most famous Italian coffee types, the cappuccino is a drink of thirds. One third espresso, one third steamed milk and topped with one third foam.

The layers of the drink tend to be more distinctive than in a latte or flat white due to the higher ratio of frothed aerated milk which sits atop the steamed milk layer.

A regular cappuccino is typically served in a 6 oz cup and is sometimes topped with a dusting of cocoa powder.

To make a cappuccino, pull a single shot of espresso, top with steamed milk and add a final aerated frothy milk layer to the cup.

Ingredients: 1 shot of espresso, steamed milk, 1 1/2 cm foam
Served in: 140 – 170 ml ceramic cup

Traditional cappuccino coffee drink in white cup
Traditional cappuccino coffee drink

Cortado

Hailing from Spain, cortado means “cut” in Spanish. The milk cuts through the espresso, and the traditional ratio is 1:1 espresso to milk.

The drink is similar to a piccolo latte, but the Cortado is commonly made in Australia with a double shot of espresso.

The result is a more intense coffee drink and stronger espresso flavour.

Also known in the US as a Gibraltar, to make a cortado pull a double shot of espresso into a small glass, top with 60 ml of textured milk.

Ingredients: 2 shots of espresso, steamed milk
Served in: 130 ml glass

Dirty Chai Latte

The merging of chai tea and a latte, the dirty chai latte is a popular choice for those seeking an aromatic spiced coffee with milk.

A combination of masala chai tea, steamed milk and a shot of espresso, it is a delicious coffee drink to enjoy during the winter months.

Don’t worry if you don’t have the time to prepare masala tea from scratch – there are many chai tea bags, powders and syrups available.

To make a dirty chai latte, brew your chai tea, add steamed milk and pour a shot of espresso over the top. Mix to combine.

Ingredients: 1 shot of espresso, chai tea, steamed milk
Served in: 230 ml glass

Flat White

Created in Australia (or New Zealand), the Flat White is one of the most popular types of coffee in Australia and taking the world by storm.

Similar to a latte, the flat white is served in a smaller cup size and as a result is less milky with just a small amount of froth on top. The result is a more intense coffee flavour.

To make a flat white, pull a single shot of espresso, top with 120 ml textured milk and a small layer of foam. It should be served in a ceramic cup with around 150 ml capacity.

Ingredients: 1 shot of espresso, steamed milk, 1/2 cm microfoam
Served in: 150 – 180 ml ceramic cup

Flat white coffee drink in white ceramic cup
Flat White Coffee

Latte

A classic espresso coffee drink, the latte is a milky coffee drink enjoyed by many coffee lovers all over the world.

They are a popular coffee drink due to the higher ratio of milk to coffee, which can mask the bitterness in some coffees.

Commonly topped with latte art and served in a glass, they are one of the most popular coffee drinks in Australia.

To make a latte at home, pull a single shot of espresso, top with textured milk and a thick layer of foam.

Ingredients: 1 shot of espresso, steamed milk, 1 cm foam
Served in: 200 – 220 ml latte glass

latte coffee drink in a latte glass on wooden table
Cafe Latte

Latte Macchiato

Made popular by Starbucks in the US, the latte macchiato is milk stained with espresso and is the reverse of a traditional macchiato.

Made with steamed milk and a shot of espresso, it is a layered milky coffee drink where the coffee is poured slowly over the top of the steamed milk.

Commonly flavoured with syrup, it is a good beginner coffee drink for those not a fan of a strong coffee taste.

Ingredients: 1 shot of espresso, steamed milk
Served in: Tall glass

Macchiato (long and short)

The macchiato means “marked” in Italian and refers to espresso being marked with milk.

Also known as an espresso macchiato or short macchiato to differentiate it from a latte macchiato above, it is a small coffee drink with a big espresso flavour.

Whilst traditionally served as espresso with a dash of milk or foam, the drink has taken on variations in different countries (and cities).

To make a traditional espresso macchiato, pull a single shot of espresso into a small demitasse cup or glass. Top with a teaspoon of frothed milk. A long macchiato is a double shot of espresso topped up with a little water and with a small amount of frothed milk.

Ingredients: 1 shot of espresso, 1-2 teaspoons froth
Served in: Demitasse cup or glass

Magic

Created in Melbourne, the Magic is a uniquely Australian coffee drink made for coffee lovers.

Essentially a flat white with less milk, it is less milky than a latte but more milky than a macchiato.

To make a magic, pull 2 ristretto shots into a small ceramic cup, top with textured milk. If using a standard flat white cup, fill to 3/4 full. If using a smaller tulip 150 ml cup, fill to the top.

Ingredients: 2 shots of ristretto, steamed milk, 1/2 cm foam
Served in: 150 ml ceramic cup

Mocha

The mocha is a sweet coffee drink thanks to the addition of a little chocolate, one of the best ways to flavour coffee.

To make a mocha, pull a shot of espresso, mix 1 teaspoon of cocoa powder or chocolate sauce into the shot then top with textured milk and a layer of froth.

Dust the top with cocoa or drizzle a small amount of chocolate sauce over the top.

Ingredients: 1 shot of espresso, 1 tsp cocoa powder, steamed milk, 1 cm foam
Served in: Latte glass or medium ceramic cup

Piccolo Latte

A small, strong latte, the Piccolo latte is a popular choice amongst fans of milk based coffee drinks who are looking for a less milky and more intense flavoured latte.

Rumoured to have been created in Sydney, the Piccolo coffee differs from a latte in two ways:

  • A piccolo has a ristretto shot instead of a regular espresso shot
  • It has a smaller quantity of milk than a regular latte.

To make a piccolo latte, pull a single shot of ristretto, top with textured milk and a fine layer of foam. Serve in a small latte glass.

Ingredients: 1 shot of ristretto, steamed milk, 1/2 cm foam
Served in: 90 – 100 ml latte glass

Different Types Of Iced Coffee Drinks

Affogato

More coffee dessert than coffee drink is the moreish affogato. Hailing from Italy, it is a fun way to enjoy coffee cold in the summer months.

To make an affogato, place one scoop of vanilla icecream into a tumbler glass or shallow dessert bowl. Top with 1 or two shots of espresso and eat with a spoon.

Glass of affogato coffee with ice cream
Affogato coffee dessert

Frappe

Originally from Greece, a frappe is an iced coffee drink made with coffee, milk and sugar.

Traditionally made with instant coffee, the coffee frappe has evolved into a blended coffee drink with many different flavour variations.

To make a traditional Greek frappe, use a cocktail shaker or electric frappe shaker and add 2 tspns instant coffee, 2 tspns sugar to taste and 1/4 cup of cold water.

Shake or blend until foamy. Place ice cubes in your glass and pour the frothy coffee into the glass. Top with a little milk if preferred.

To make a contemporary frappe, use a blender and combine ice cubes, espresso, milk, sugar and flavours. Blend to combine, pour into a tall glass and enjoy.

Either way, a frappe is an icy cold coffee drink perfect for hot summer days.

Ingredients: Instant coffee, cold milk, sugar, water
Served in: 400 ml tall glass

Iced Coffee

A traditional iced coffee is the simplest iced coffee drink on our list.

Simply brew hot coffee or espresso, pour into a tall glass. Add ice cubes to chill. Top with water or milk and flavoured syrup if desired.

Ingredients: 2 shots of espresso or brewed coffee (60ml), ice cubes, water, milk
Served in: 400 ml tall glass

top view of iced latte in glass with straw

Iced Latte

Perfect for hot Summer days, this is one of my favourite iced coffee drinks.

Unlike an iced coffee which is predominately coffee and water, an iced latte is made with espresso and milk.

To make an iced latte add 3-4 ice cubes to your glass, pull a shot of espresso into the glass, add sugar and vanilla essence to taste and stir to combine. Top with cold milk.

Click here to see the full iced latte recipe

Ingredients: 1 shot of espresso, cubed ice, cold milk, sugar, vanilla
Served in: 230 ml glass

Milkshake

A coffee milkshake is a great alternative to your traditional coffee drinks.

At an old school café they may use coffee syrup, but it tastes infinitely better if you use brewed, cold brew or espresso coffee.

To make a coffee milkshake add 2 shots of espresso (or 1/4 cup brewed cold coffee), 1/4 cup of milk, 2 scoops of ice cream and 1 tspn cocoa powder to a blender or milkshake maker.

Blend until frothy. Pour into a tall glass and serve immediately.

Ingredients: 2 shots espresso, icecream, milk, cocoa powder
Served in: 400 ml tall glass

Cafe Sua Da

Similar to a Cafe Bombon and literally translating to iced milk coffee, this Vietnamese iced coffee drink combines strong coffee with sweetened condensed milk over ice using a special pour over coffee device called a phin.

To make a Vietnamese iced coffee, half fill your glass with ice, add ground coffee to the phin and place on top of your glass.

Pour hot water over the coffee grounds, which filters coffee into your glass. Add sweetened condensed milk and stir to combine.

See the full recipe here

Ingredients: Pour over coffee, ice cubes, sweetened condensed milk
Served in: 400 ml tall glass

Different Types Of Cold Coffee Drinks

Unlike iced coffee drinks, cold coffee drinks are prepared without ice. Here are two of my favourite cold coffee types.

Cold Brew Coffee

Cold brew coffee has become increasingly popular over the past few years.

The mellow flavour and low acidity are just some of the reasons it is one of the most popular types of cold coffee.

There are many ways to make cold brew coffee at home. You can use a cold brew coffee maker, a French press or even a jar.

To make cold brew add coarsely ground coffee to cold water, stir to combine and leave to brew for 12 – 24 hours. Strain the grounds out of the coffee and serve or store in the fridge.

It can be served straight over ice or diluted with cold water or milk.

Nitro Coffee

One of the newest types of cold coffee drinks available, Nitro coffee is cold brew coffee injected with nitrogen to produce a foamy cold coffee drink with a similar mouthfeel to beer.

Commonly sold as a ready to drink coffee, there is a growing range of home nitro kegs on the market if you would like to make it at home.

Frothy nitro cold brew coffee in tall glass
Frothy Nitro Cold Brew Coffee

Different Types Of Alcoholic Coffee Drinks

There are countless different ways to make coffee cocktails. Here are just a few of my favourites.

Espresso Martini

One of my all time favourite cocktails, the espresso martini is the perfect combination of sophistication and flavour.

To make an espresso martini combine a shot of espresso with 45 ml vodka and 15 ml Kahlua in a cocktail shaker.

Shake vigorously to combine and foam. Strain into a cocktail glass and serve.

Ingredients: 1 shot espresso, vodka, kahlua
Served in: Martini glass

Irish Coffee

One of the most popular and well known alcoholic drinks, the Irish Coffee is a warming combination of brewed coffee, whiskey, sugar and whipped cream.

To make an Irish coffee, combine 1 cup of hot coffee with 2 tspns of brown sugar. Add 40 ml of whiskey and top with whipped cream.

Ingredients: Brewed coffee, whiskey, sugar, whipped cream
Served in: Tall glass

espresso martini in cocktail glass
Espresso Martini coffee cocktail

Unique Types Of Coffee In Australia

In addition to the Magic, Piccolo Latte and the Flat White, there is another uniquely Australian drink we had to share.

Babyccino

An Australian creation, the babyccino is for the kids. No coffee, just a small cup of delicious warm textured milk and foam dusted with chocolate.

Commonly served with a marshmallow, the babyccino is the perfect way to bribe your little ones to hang out with you at your favourite cafe.

What Is The Difference Between Flat White And Latte?

The difference between a latte and a flat white is the ratio of coffee to milk. A flat white has a higher coffee to milk ratio than a latte.

A standard flat white is served in a 150 ml ceramic cup, whereas a latte is served in a 220 ml glass.

As a result, a flat white will have a stronger coffee flavour than a latte, which will taste more milky.

What Is The Difference Between Cappuccino And Flat White?

While both coffee drinks are served in a 5-6 oz ceramic cup (150 – 180 ml), but they have quite a different flavour due to the ratio of coffee to milk and froth.

A cappuccino is made up of equal parts espresso, steamed milk and froth. Whereas a flat white has one part espresso and 3 parts steamed milk with just a fine layer of froth.

As a result the cappuccino has a stronger espresso flavour than the flat white due to the lower amount of steamed milk.

different kinds of iced coffee drinks on table
Popular types of iced coffee drinks

What Is The Difference Between Long Black And Americano?

The difference between long black and americano coffee drinks is the order in which the ingredients are added to the glass.

For a long black, hot water is placed in the cup and espresso poured on top and the crema is preserved.

With an americano, espresso is extracted into the cup first, with hot water poured on top, dissipating the crema.

More coffee articles

If you loved our list of different types of coffee explained, you may like to try some of these delicious coffee recipes.

See all our coffee brew guides here. If you love to make great coffee at home, read more about the best coffee equipment here.

Plus, don’t forget to follow us on Pinterest, Facebook or Twitter to see more great coffee articles like this one in your feed.

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About Rachel Rodda

Founder of Coffeewise, Rachel is a passionate coffee drinker, Specialty Coffee Association member and former barista who loves to research and share practical tips on brewing great coffee at home.

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