What is an Americano Coffee? See Why So Many People LOVE this Amazing Drink

Everything You Wanted to Know About One of the Most Popular Coffee Drinks

Americano coffee, as the name suggests, was surely originated by Americans, but in Italy, during World War II. And that’s because the local coffee shops in Italy had too strong espresso coffee for their taste. So, just to make it more palatable, they started diluting the espresso in hot water and the result is the world’s famous Americano coffee.

Thus, Italians named this drink, Caffè americano or Caffé americano, meaning American Coffee. However, today, this American-style drip coffee is widely known as Americano coffee.

So, if you’re someone who likes to consume less caffeine in their everyday routine, Americano coffee is just the right amount of caffeine for you.

In this article, I will share everything about South Korea’s favorite and famous drink. Also, how can you make Americano coffee without a drip coffee machine or an espresso machine?

Stay with me to learn something exciting!

What is Americano coffee?

When you mix espresso coffee with hot water, you get the popular Americano coffee.

It’s that simple… really!

While not so popular among Starbucks coffee lovers, Americano is an amazing coffee with the right amount of rich and bold taste that will leave you spellbound… especially if you like your coffee mild and nice.

But, you’ll be stunned to know how this popular Café Americano is made—using just water and espresso.

So, all you need to do is to take two espresso shots and mix it with lots of hot water and Tadaaa… your perfect American is ready steady! Oh, and did we mention it’s has one of the lowest calorie content of almost any coffee drink.

Café Americano—Espresso First or Hot water?

Now, as I mentioned earlier, Americano coffee, no matter how fancy it sounds is a mixture of just water and espresso.

But, most coffee enthusiasts find themselves scratching their heads on what to add first; Espresso or hot water?

While many people believe it doesn’t make much of a difference. Coffee lovers and experienced baristas swear by adding water first then espresso to keep the delicate flavors and creamy taste of espresso intact.

Also, adding water first allows you to keep the Crema last longer. However, if you are someone who doesn’t appreciate the Crema and bitter taste, add espresso first, then go with water.

By definition, if you add water first, it becomes a long black coffee, not Americano!

Americano VS. Black coffee—What’s the Difference?

When it comes to distinguishing between Americano and Black coffee, many people fail. Though, the might look and smell very similar, but all coffees look and sound similar, right? It’s the taste that counts the most…

The main difference between Americano coffee and Black coffee lies in their preparation method which gives both of them a different flavor.

Black coffee is a basic style brewed coffee you would easily make at home by pouring how water on ground coffee. The taste of black coffee is slightly acidic and bitter.

On the other hand, Great Americano is just the diluted version of espresso with a strong, robust flavor.

Americano VS. Drip Coffee—What’s the Difference?

We know that Americans created Americano as a watered-down version of the stronger and richer espresso, but there are other differences between Americano and drip coffee that I’m going to share now.

The main and biggest differences lie in the preparation of the coffee. Americanos are made with espresso shots and hot water, while drip coffee is a blend of finely ground coffee beans and hot water, infused for a definite period of time to get the maximum flavor.

The second difference is the caffeine amount in both drinks. Americano has 103 mg of caffeine per cup while drip coffee has around 96 mg of caffeine. In short, Americano has more caffeine. Hence, more flavor and wholesome taste in a single cup of Americano.

Can you make an Americano without Espresso Machine?

Definitely, you can!

After all, espresso machines were not there when Americano was first introduced by the American soldiers stationed in Italy, were they?

The two common methods used to make an Americano without espresso machines are:

Moka Pot Americano

Coffee lovers believe Moka pot never makes a “true” Americano because of the fact that it doesn’t generate enough pressure. Also, the finished result is comparatively bitter and different from the true espresso coffee drink.

But, the results can be drastically similar if the Moka pot is used right to brew coffee. Just like the traditional Italians do!

Start with the concentrated coffee from the Moka pot and dilute it with hot water to achieve the Americano like strong and flavorful coffee.

If you find the taste too strong or too mild, adjust the water-to-coffee ratio according to your preference and enjoy your cup of Americano without an espresso machine.

Aeropress Americano

Now, Aeropress is my personal preference for brewing Americano without an espresso machine… because it produces a similar taste and flavor while keeping the caffeine content intact. The texture, however, differs from the original Americano, but since we’re diluting it with hot water, it doesn’t even matter.

Like the Moka pot and other coffee brewing methods, Aeropress cannot generate enough pressure as an espresso machine. But, it uses total immersion with a pressing method to brew the coffee. The result is a smooth, amazing, dark coffee with just the right kick of caffeine to start your day.

The Very Famous Coffee Shop Method— AKA the Espresso Machine

If you simply cannot resist the urge to drink the original Americano without compromising the true flavor and texture, invest in a reliable espresso machine.

It’s the most popular and efficient way to brew a perfect cup of Americano. Luckily, you don’t have to get those expensive machines at your local coffee shop because there are a few affordable options you can try. For example, Mr Coffee Café Barista or De’Longhi EC155 are some of the beginner-friendly, affordable options.

Just start using your machine by pulling an espresso shot and adding hot water to it. You can choose the ratio of espresso to water according to your taste. However, the universal ratio of espresso to water is 1:2.

Is Iced Americano Same as Regular Americano?

That’s like asking if the Beatles are the same as the Rolling Stones. Iced Americano is somewhat similar to the regular Americano as they share the basic concept of mixing espresso shot with hot water. But, iced Americano, as the name suggests is an espresso topped with cold water over ice. I have to say that a good iced americano is my all-time favorite drink. You can tasted the coffee, and yet it’s not overpowering.

Pro Tip: With your next iced americano, try adding a little bit of cinnamon, a pinch of brown sugar and a tiny splash of half and half. You can thank me later.

And it is an excellent, refreshing drink to satisfy your coffee cravings on a hot summer day. The best part is you can also customize your flavor by adding additional ingredients such as sugar, cream, syrup, steamed milk, etc.

The strength of Iced Americano depends on the espresso shots added based on your personal preference.

What are some of the other espresso based coffee drinks?

Other than Americano, there are many espresso based coffee drinks you can try at your local coffee shop.


Like americano, it is also an Italian beverage with equal parts of an espresso shot, steamed milk, and frothed milk foam, topped with cinnamon or cocoa.


It is a popular coffee drink with a single espresso shot mixed with steamed milk, and frothed milk topped with latte art for visual appeal.

Espresso shot:

Espresso is the purest type of coffee produced by extracting hot, high-pressure water through finely ground coffee beans. It is usually consumed as a concentrated and potent coffee shot and is served in a tiny demitasse cup.

White Americano

While coffee fanatics would judge you by your choice of adding milk to Americano, it is not uncommon for many people to customize their Americanos by adding milk instead of pouring hot water as you would in your regular coffee. The espresso-to-milk ratio depends on your personal preference and liking.

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