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What Is A Breve? Learn how to make it, and more!

Nov 15th 2022 - Monica Cunanan

What Is A Breve? Learn how to make it, and more!

We can safely assume that most people understand what cappuccinos and lattes are. You probably drink lots of different types of coffee every day and know a lot about them. In this article, we dive into exactly what a breve coffee is.

What Is A Breve?

Breve, breve latte, or coffee breve, is an espresso-based coffee drink. It is made up of either one or two shots of espresso with steamed half-and-half instead of milk. Half-and-half is made with half whole milk and half heavy cream which can be premixed in a bottle or carton, or you can make it yourself using equal parts of cream and milk.

You can imagine that this mixture creates a super creamy, smooth, rich coffee drink that is sweet but still bold due to the espresso.

In Italian, Breve means ‘short' but that doesn't necessarily mean it will always be served in a small coffee cup. Every coffee shop will serve its coffee differently.

Some people may froth the creamier milk blend smooth and velvet, which makes it ideal for lattés. Other coffee shops may foam their latte just like they would r a cappuccino. However they choose to prepare them, the ingredients for lattes stay the same—always half-and-half and pour over coffee.

The Breve is more of an American adaptation of the Italian classic caffè latte. Some people enjoy this drink for breakfast, but it’s usually an after-dinner drink.

What does a breve taste like?

It is super creamy and rich because of its espresso base and half-and-­half cream, so it’s not really subtle at all. It has a high level of fats and doesn't need any additional sugar because it has a thick creamier top layer. Definitely consider this a treat!

Latte vs Breve

A latte brevé is a creamy espresso drink, not too separate from a cafe latte (espresso). Breve lattes use steamed half-and-half instead of milk or milk foams compared to other types of drink

A breve is rich, full-fat milk that makes for an indulgent coffee experience. This decadent drink is sweet that you would not need any extra sugar.

Cafe Latte

For most people, pulling a double shot of espresso followed by pouring over steamed milk is the way they make their latte.

Any type of milk can be used for making lattes. Oats, almonds, soy, cows' milk, or whatever else you prefer. The trick is to steam it and then let it cool down so that it becomes smooth and velvety again.

How To Make A Breve at Home

A breve is composed of two parts—espresso coffee and steamed half and half. Because each component of this cup of joe is so strong, we need both of them at their full strength.

We want real espresso made on an actual espresso machine. My personal preference would be a double shot.

We want half-and-half (with at least 10% fat) for our coffee.

Step 1: Espresso

coffee maker or espresso machine is an important component of making cafe breves at home. If we don't extract our coffee properly, it won't have enough strength to cut through the sweet creaminess of the half-and‑half. We don't want any coffee drinks here; we're looking for real espressos.

To pull a double espresso, use a 1:2 ratio. If you're using 20 grams of ground beans, you'll get a 40-gram (or 40ml) double shot. It takes about 30 seconds for this to go through your portafilters. If it runs too slow, increase your grind size. If it doesn't run fast enough, increase the size of your grind.

A 1:2 ratio like this will give a nice mix of both strength and extraction. You'll enjoy all of the flavors that coffee has to offer, but it won't be watered down. It will be strong and flavorful.

For a good espresso, medium to dark roasting tends to be better than light roasting. Roasting coffee beans at lower temperatures results in a richer-tasting cup of coffee.

A medium-dark roast coffee is going to be able to cut through the half-n-half a lot better that a light roast coffee. Darker roasting times produce better breve than lighter ones.

Read More: Cold Brew Vs Espresso: The Difference

Step 2: Half-and-Half Milk

You can get it either store-bought, or you can make your own at home. You can also recreate it by using cream and whole milk in equal portions. Aim to have your resulting blend hit around 10-15% fat content.

Foam it the way you would the milk for a cafe latte. Creamy and velvety is my personal favorite style. Be careful to not steam it too much past 60°C to avoid burning it and turning it into a custard-like thing.

Make sure to check for the hissing noise coming from the steam wand and your eyes glued to the cup for the whirlpool motion from the foam.

Pour the steamed half-and-half over the espresso. Make some beautiful latte while enjoying your decadent cafe breve!

Read More: What Is A Macchiato? Ways To Make It And More

Need Coffee Makers for your business?

Here at Culinary Depot, we carry different types of commercial coffee makers that are perfect for any business.

May it be:

Contact us or visit our online store for more information about any commercial coffee makers to produce a fresh cup of joe!