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Knowing the Differences between Americano and Long Black Coffee

Americano vs Long Black Coffee

How to enjoy espresso in different ways? You can try Americano or Long Black. At first, you may find both beverages look and taste alike, to the point that you can’t even distinguish them. Indeed, they are both espresso-based and use hot water in the making. However, there are interestingly some subtle differences between Americano and Long Black. 

Let’s see what makes these two popular variations of black coffee different.

What Is Americano Coffee

Americano Coffee
Americano Coffee

A staple in most coffee shops, Americano is a black coffee made by combining a shot(s) of espresso with hot water. What will make it different from Long Black is how to make it – the making order. Based on the general consensus, you make Americano by adding espresso to the cup and then pouring hot water over it. 

We can trace back the history of Americano to Italy – originally Café Americano – evolving from the Italian cafe culture. The Italian baristas realized that espresso was too strong and flavorful, especially for Americans. Therefore, they watered down the espresso and served it in a larger cup. 

The flavor profile of Americano will depend on several factors, like the type of beans used, different regions where coffee beans grow, roasting processes, and many more. Generally speaking, darker roast coffee beans – dubbed as espresso beans – are preferable for making a great Americano. 

Also read: Be The Master! 4 Coffee Roasting Levels Chart: W/ Image & Guide

What Is Long Black Coffee

Long Black Coffee
Long Black Coffee

Long Black is another type of black coffee, pretty similar to Americano, having the same ingredients – espresso and hot water. However, you make Long Black in a different order – add a small amount of hot water to a cup and then pull one or two shots of espresso into it.

The order surprisingly makes a difference! You will get a distinct result of a stronger, bolder flavor compared to Americano since the aromatics of crema are not disrupted. Crema is a thin, tan-brownish foam layer you will get on top of a shot of espresso. It is said that crema maintains the taste of the espresso and the tiny bubbles boost the sweetness. 

First made in Australia and New Zealand, the story was almost similar, namely to appease American tourists with milder espresso-based coffee drinks.

The Difference in Caffeine Content in Americano and Long Black 

The differences between Americano and Long Black also lie in their caffeine content. For both drinks, the caffeine content will greatly depend on the number of espresso shots they use. It also can vary due to other factors, such as the coffee quality and the barista’s preciseness. 

By and large, the common serving of a single drink uses double shots of espresso. 

Caffeine Content in Americano:

If 1 shot of espresso equals 77mg of caffeine (on average), hence typically:

  • A serving size of 6-8 fl oz may have 77mg caffeine content
  • A serving size of 12-16 fl oz may have 154mg caffeine content, which is very high, and 5 calories
  • A serving size of 20-24 fl oz may have 231mg caffeine content

Caffeine Content in Long Black:

  • A serving size of Long Black per fl oz contains 25.67mg of caffeine or about 86.79 mg of caffeine per 100 ml. 
  • A serving size of 6 fl oz contains total caffeine of 154mg, which is very high, and 2 calories.   

Which Is Stronger between Americano and Long Black Coffee

differences between americano and long black

Originating from Americans who longed for a lighter version of espresso, Americano is a freshly brewed espresso topped with hot water. As a result, it is milder and smoother.

On the other hand, Long Black is usually brewed with lesser water than Americano, therefore, it is stronger in aroma and fuller in taste. Pouring espresso on top of the water will preserve the so-called crema and richness. 

Moreover, you can usually find Long Black in a serving size of 8oz cup (about 230ml). Meanwhile, you can order Americano in 8oz, 12oz (about 350ml), or even 16oz (about 470ml) serving cups. 

Benefits of Drinking Americano and Long Black Coffee?

So, what is the benefit of drinking Americano and Long Black? First, both of them give you incredible caffeine boosts – kick and shot. And second, they contain low-level calories which are good choices for health-conscious coffee drinkers, especially regarding their calorie intake. 

Also read: Can We Drink Coffee During Pregnancy? Check Out These Facts!

So, Which is Better between Americano and Long Black Coffee

To sum up, both Americano and Long Black are espresso-based drinks that nearly have undistinguishable features. Invented in Italy, we make Americanos by pouring hot water on top of freshly brewed shots of espresso. Meanwhile, Long Black, originating from Australia and New Zealand, is made by the polar opposite of that. 

Also read: Cold Brew vs Hot brew: Everything You Need to Know

The making order may appear a trivial distinction, but the differences between Americano and Long Black, particularly in their flavors, are obvious. If you like espresso in milder and mellower versions, you can try Americano. If you prefer a stronger aroma and fuller taste than Americano, you can pick Long Black.