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What is Espresso?

Are you an avid coffee drinker? Do you find yourself needing to double up and add espresso shots? If you answered yes, well…you came to the right place and you’re definitely not alone. We even like to add a shot or two of espresso (or three, we’re not judging!) to our morning brew.  But when ordering or prepping your morning cup of espresso have you ever stopped to think about what the hell is in that magical cup or shot and how does it fuel you?

What is it?

First, let’s cover the basics. Espresso is a full-flavored, concentrated form of coffee. Its origin, like many other delicious dishes, is Italy. Its main ingredient is ground coffee and you can often see it being served as standalone shots, or as the base of many popular coffee drinks.

How is it different from regular coffee?

Espresso is made by using the exact same plant as coffee, and it’s grown, processed, and roasted the same way, so how is it more concentrated? The difference between espresso and coffee comes from the grind and treatment of the beans. The beans are finely ground and tightly packed before pressurized hot water is pushed through by the espresso machine.

Once the beans are finely ground, tightly packed and hot water is pushed through, you’re left with a liquid that is more concentrated than coffee — an espresso shot.

The shot will be topped by a foamy, brown layer which is referred to as “crema.” The crema adds to the rich flavor of the espresso and it is formed as a result of the various reactions that occur when the finely ground and packed coffee beans are introduced to the pressurized water. Under the crema, you’ll have a rich, aromatic, caffeine packed liquid.

It’s important to note that because espresso is typically served in smaller servings than coffee, it has less caffeine per serving. But if you’re looking for a quick and easy way to get an extra boost of caffeine, an espresso shot is for you.