Anyone who loves Italian coffee will also appreciate the Coffee Lungo. This typically Italian preparation is roughly the same as that of German filter coffee in terms of its tradition, but it has significantly more aroma and variety in taste. A lungo is a classic espresso, which, however, is prepared with significantly more water.
On the one hand, this extends the processing time in the espresso machine and thus tickles other aromas out of the coffee beans. Coffee preparation is drunk directly, among other things, but also forms the basis of other popular coffee specialties such as the latte macchiato.
What is a Cafe Lungo?
Coffee Lungo is a drink that is basically an extended espresso. Lungo is simply the Italian term for long. Lungo means “long” in Italian, a lungo is accordingly an extended espresso. Such a drink is very popular on a wide variety of occasions and is increasingly being offered both in restaurants and at the afternoon coffee table.
The great specialty of the Lungo is the taste, which differs significantly from a conventional espresso. It comes about because the coffee powder stays longer in the espresso machine. In this way, additional flavorings can be extracted from the beans.
The lungo has become increasingly popular in recent years, and not just in Italy where it’s mainly served for breakfast.
Anyone who loves the intense and at the same time diverse taste of a good espresso can often experience real surprises with a lungo. The longer time spent in the espresso machine means that completely new and undiscovered aromas can be extracted from the coffee bean or the coffee grounds. Accordingly, not every coffee that is aromatic and tasty as espresso is also suitable for a lungo in the classic sense.
The aromas resulting from this process must be able to meet the taste of the gourmet. Accordingly, it can be important to test such preparation with different types of coffee that are specialized for this type of coffee, here it is important to find the right brand.
Just like a good espresso, however, a lungo also offers a full and beautifully shiny crema. This means that the high-quality products can be distinguished from the less good ones in the cup. The right combination of the espresso machine, processing, and bean quality ensures a perfect cup of lungo. It is extremely widespread in Italy.
Coffee Lungo - Very Popular Not Only In Italy
At least since the arrival of the many guest workers after the Second World War, the Italian coffee tradition has also continued to gain popularity in the USA. Even if the classic filter coffee was still considered the measure of all things for many years, a classic espresso after dinner was a welcome change.
So it is not surprising that the Coffee Lungo has also become increasingly popular with many Americans. This was mainly due to the fact that a larger amount of aromatic drinks could be produced without increasing the caffeine content. After all, the amount of ground coffee stays the same even if the amount of water is increased.
How to Make Coffee Lungo at Home?
Even if purists may disagree, there are still two ways of preparation. For example, if you have a Nespresso machine, you can easily adjust the amount of water in many areas. Other fully automatic coffee machines and espresso machines also allow an exact specification and dosage of the amount of water.
This means that you can dose the Coffee Lungo accordingly. For example, if you take 7g of ground coffee and 30ml of water per cup for a classic espresso, you get a lungo if the amount of water is doubled, i.e. 60ml of water, with the same amount of coffee.
When preparing the lungo, however, as with many things, personal preferences and taste are what count. Many people probably hear lungo in connection with the ristretto. The ristretto is the opposite of the lungo. This is achieved by reducing the amount of water and its crema and creaminess are very close to mocha.
However, if you don’t have a coffee or espresso machine, you can use the second option. With this preparation method, you extend the classic espresso with the appropriate amount of hot water only after the machine. This variant is not called lungo, but the so-called Coffee Americano. The Americano usually tastes a little milder than a lungo.
With some beans, the weakened aroma is definitely an advantage. Because of the longer time in the machine and the resulting longer brewing process, a lungo can quickly turn into a bitter taste if the beans are not suitable for this type of preparation. The second preparation variant can help here.
A lungo can also be prepared with a capsule machine. Coffee capsules have the advantage that they already contain the ideal amount of coffee powder and that your coffee can be prepared at the push of a button. There are numerous coffee capsules for making lungo, e.g. from the brands like Gourmesso. These are compatible with a Nespresso machine, for example.
Basically, you prepare a Cafe Lungo like a normal espresso. However, the amount of water in the recipe is doubled. Thus, there is longer contact between espresso powder and water and the drink is effectively prolonged. Therefore, it is also the exact opposite of a ristretto, in which the amount of water is halved compared to a normal espresso.
Coffee Lungo Recipe
- Espresso Machine
- Lungo Cup - Small Cappuccino Cup
- 7 g Espresso Beans Or Powder
- 60 ml Water
- Preheat your cup on the espresso machine.
- Grind your beans as coarsely as possible (to avoid over-extraction).
- Put about 7g of ground espresso beans in the portafilter.
- Now you have to level and tamper the espresso ground.
- Clamp the portafilter and start the brewing. After a little less than a minute you stop the brewing.
- You should now have about 60ml of brewed lungo, which you only need to stir.
- Enjoy your drink
- Blend: As mentioned above, light blends are particularly suitable for a lungo. The quality of the coffee beans must be ensured.
- Grinder: Without the right (coarse) degree of grinding, you will quickly end up with a very bitter drink in your cup.
- Machine: A Cafe Lungo only succeeds really well in a reliable portafilter machine. An alternative is pad machines with pre-made mixtures.
- Human: Just follow our steps to take out of the hazard equation.
Incidentally, a lungo is also an excellent ingredient in other drinks and dishes. Many chefs and confectioners choose him for preparing tiramisu. When preparing a cappuccino or latte macchiato, you can also easily add a Cafe Lungo.
Which coffee beans are best for coffee lungo?
Both arabica and robusta beans can be used for lungo. It depends above all on the quality of the beans whether they can survive such a preparation method without changes in taste. The Robusta beans are usually a little more frugal and patient and cope with the changes in preparation times particularly well.
But also very good Arabica beans from different regions of the world can be processed into a wonderful Coffee Lungo. In any case, it is important to try your way through different beans and countries of origin and regions in order to find the right and ideal bean for your own taste.
Then the lungo becomes an experience that you can enjoy with all your senses. In addition to the types of beans, the water naturally also plays a decisive role. As with espresso, the water should be as fresh as possible and not stale. If possible, you should use the water filter to set the optimum water hardness of 7 – 8 ° dH.
This is especially important if the lungo is to be prepared in a classic way. Here the water has more time to come into contact with the coffee powder and thus also to transfer its own taste to the end product. And neither Arabica nor Robusta beans are particularly fond of this.
We, therefore, advise you to try different types of coffee to find the best version of your espresso lungo. You can recognize high-quality products by the crema, which should be shiny on top of the cup.
Experts usually choose lighter roasted espresso beans, as the focus here is on fruity aromas and more pleasant acids.
Which Drinks Can Be Created On The Basis Of Caffè Lungo
Anyone who wants to enjoy “La Dolce Vita” is well served with a Coffee Lungo. To about 60 ml 7g coffee using fresh water and enjoy a real Italian coffee classic. This coffee can also be used to prepare various other drinks and foods. For example, many cooks use the lungo to prepare tiramisu, as the slightly less intense lungo is much easier to portion and distribute. A latte macchiato or a cappuccino also benefits from the much more rounded aroma of such a preparation.
Anyone who owns the appropriate machines to be able to make a ristretto or lungo shouldn’t do without this pleasure. With little effort per cup, a drink can be created which in its variety of flavors leaves normal coffee far behind. Arabica and Robusta beans for Coffee Lungo are optimized for preparation and offer a rounder even with the somewhat longer brewing time in the machines and above all, only moderately bitter enjoyment.
Offer your guests a view of La Dolce Vita and serve a real coffee specialty, which is characterized by its taste and unique crema. A lungo is part of the Italian way of life and means relaxation and enjoyment at the same time.
What Is The Difference Between Coffee Lungo And Coffee Crema?
Cafe Lungo and Cafe Crema are often equated with each other. This is actually not too far-fetched, as they are both based on the same principle of an extended espresso. Nevertheless, in the end, they differ clearly in terms of taste and preparation.
The Italian specialty coffee lungo is prepared with twice the amount of water than with a normal espresso. With the Swiss variant Coffee Crema, on the other hand, it is four times as much.
Accordingly, the taste of the lungo and crema is also different. There is also the third typical variation, ristretto, which is reminiscent of mocha. Only half of the usual water content is used here.
7-10 g Beans, 15 ml Water
Sweet and Strong
7-10 g Beans, 30 ml Water
25 - 30 Seconds
Balanced and Aromatic
7-10 g Beans, 60 ml Water
50 - 60 Seconds
A Bit Bitter
Coffee Lungo is an extended espresso. You need 7 g of ground coffee and 60 ml of water for one cup. Both arabica and robusta beans can be used for the preparation. Suitable as a basis for other creations such as cappuccino or latte macchiato.
If you love the typical taste of Italian espresso, then you will most likely like the Coffee Lungo too. The drink is characterized by its extended preparation time in the espresso machine and releases completely new aromas. Try it out yourself!