Do you need something to warm up a chilly morning, or is the day hot as a firecracker? Either way, you need to get yourself a latte as soon as possible. And here comes your question; is a latte hot or cold?
A latte is hot. However, depending on your preference, you can ask for an iced latte. Essential latte ingredients are espresso and steamed milk. A hot latte will help kick out that cold from your body. Nevertheless, If the weather is hot, cool your nerves by taking an iced latte.
Stay tuned to learn more and understand your favorite latte drink better. I believe by the end of this article, you will get the answer to all your questions. But, before I get deeper into it, let me quickly explain to you what latte means.
Table of Contents
What is a Latte?
The term latte derives from the Italian word ‘Caffe e latte,’ which literally means milk and coffee. It is a drink that you make with milk and espresso. You can decide to prepare it hot or iced.
The latte drink comes in different sizes depending on the amount of espresso in it. You may like it with a single shot or a double shot of espresso. Whichever way, you will still enjoy your drink.
Compared to other espresso-based drinks, you make lattes with most milk. You can also decide to flavor it with flavored syrups such as cinnamon dolce syrup and vanilla syrup. Typically, the ratio for espresso to steamed milk is one to two. You then top up the latte with a layer of foam.
Is Latte Hot or Cold?
I will start by asking this question; have you ever visited your favorite joint for a latte, and then the barista asks if you need it hot or cold? Yes, you heard me right. The barista only wanted to deliver your order accurately.
Here is the thing; a latte is basically a hot drink. You can serve it at about 160 degrees. Your barista brews the espresso at 195-205 degrees and steams the milk to around 140-165 degrees.
However, depending on your preference and the hot sunny weather, you may request a cold/iced latte. The barista will prepare the drink by putting ice cubes into a glass; add hot espresso, then chilled milk.
Now, the next time you visit a coffee shop, remember to clarify whether you need a hot latte or iced latte. That way, you will avoid any misunderstandings. That’s because you will receive what you have ordered.
Can a Latte Be Warm?
Yes, a latte can be warm. I will tell you how. You get a warm latte when you reduce the temperature at which you steam your milk. For instance, if you are making the latte for kids, you can serve them the drink at a temperature of 130 degrees.
Note: when you steam your milk at a lower temperature, you break down the lactose. As a result, you make natural sweetness in the milk. On the other hand, very high temperatures tamper with the sugar compounds. They can also ruin the foam by completely breaking down milk protein.
If you need a warm latte at a café, request it to come at a temperature of 130 degrees. However, if you are making it by yourself at home, no need to worry. That’ because lattes at home are generally warm. The reasons being:
- The frothing equipment you use at home has a lower frothing temperature.
- Unlike the professionals, you will take a long time preparing your latte. So that by the time you are finishing, it is already warm.
How Can You Get Extra Hot Drinks?
Let’s say you are in a hurry. You wish to take your latte later after catching up with your bus. The only way to have it hot when drinking the latte is to ask your barista to make it extra hot.
The barista can make extra hot latte drinks by:
- Steaming the milk to a temperature of about 180 degrees.
- Preheat the cup before placing the latte inside.
- Serve your latte a few seconds after brewing.
Note that the flavors of an extra hot latte are not balanced like that of a regular latte. The hot drink also lacks sweetness.
Why is The Latte Too Cold?
The reasons why your latte is too cold might be:
- You fail to match the steaming milk with your espresso extraction.
- You do not preheat the cup.
- The temperatures are low to steam the milk.
- Your cup does not keep hot drinks for longer.
How Can I Make a Cold Latte Hotter?
- Steam your latte at a higher temperature.
- Simultaneously pull espresso as you steam the latte. If you fail to do that, one of either espresso or steamed milk settles as you continue to prepare the other. By the time you finish preparing the milk, make sure that the espresso is still hot.
- Preheat your cup before placing the latte inside. Preheating the cup will help keep the latte hotter for a longer time.
- Use a different mug. The mug you decide to use determines how long your latte stays warm. I advise that you use thick mugs that have a narrower mouth. That way, your drinks will remain warm for a longer time.
How Do You Order A Latte?
Order your latte by stating your preferred cup size. The cup size can be small, medium, and large. Choose between regular coffee and decaf. Also, tell your barista if you would like to substitute the dairy milk with different milk. Some of the options are soy milk and almond milk.
Make it a habit to clarify whether you need a hot latte or an iced latte. Also, get information about the available sweeteners, flavors, and sugar substitutes.
Originally, lattes were made hot. However, there has been an increase in demand for iced lattes over time. Due to that reason, many coffee houses have adopted the drink on their menus. Therefore, to answer your question, is latte hot or cold? My expert opinion is that lattes can be made hot, warm, or cold. I advise that you clarify how you want your latte to be every time you place your order. That way, you will avoid any misunderstanding.