The best thing about coffee is its limitless recipes and types. Every type has its own delicacy, taste, aroma and benefits. So you visit some coffee shop and find a new entry on the menu Breve Coffee. At that moment you think wow, that’s something new but what is a breve coffee actually?
I know that if you really want some amazing flavor at the coffee shop, but really don’t know about that specific item on menu, it becomes a little confusing. Same is the story of Breve coffee. In this detailed guide, I have tried to cover each and every aspect of a Breve Coffee. Starting from the origin of its name and making, covering its delicious recipe at home, a little knowledge about its presence at renowned coffee shops and then some basic differences from other types; each and every feature is covered in details.
In short, after this guide, you will be knowing more than a Barista at coffee shop about the delicious Breve Coffee.
Origins of the ‘Breve’ CoffeeBefore going into the preparation and other aspects related to Breve, first we must know where this name and drink comes from? The word ‘Breve’ means short, brief, small or concise in Italian. So does this mean, it is just a short or small shot like an espresso shot? No, that’s not true you may get this drink in number of available sizes. So what is the real story then? To be honest, there are number of stories regarding this name. However, the most accepted logic behind this name is the way it is prepared .i.e. with steamed half and half instead of milk. The steamed half and half does not rise to the higher levels as compared to the low fat milk, so the drink made with it is shorter as compared to the same amount of low fat milk. That is why even if you find it in different sizes, it will be packed with much more calories as compared to skim milk. More on calories will be explained later. Breve is actually an Americanized alteration to the classic Italian Café Latte, which is strictly a milk-based coffee. The Breve Coffee is also famous by some other names such as Café Breve or Latte Breve.
What is a Breve Coffee?After discussing the origin of Breve, let us know about what Breve coffee actually is? As explained above, it is a modified version of the classic Italian Cappuccino. The basic difference as compared to Italian Cappuccino is that Breve is prepared with half-and-half (a mixture of whole milk and cream) instead of milk. A Breve Coffee comprises of one shot of espresso along with equal amount of steamed and frothed half-and-half. One must keep in mind that each Espresso drink having the word Breve in its name, has the half-and-half element instead of milk. This is equally applicable for latte, mocha or cappuccino. Due to this half and half component, all these Breve drinks are richer, creamier, denser as well as more viscous. The delicious part is the fluffiness of coffee due to richer frothiness of half and half. You may also get this drink prepared in the form of Iced Breve, where your cup will be filled with ice cubes. However, in any case you must not expect the Breve drinks to be sweet. At most of the coffee shops, if you want a sweetened flavor, you must ask your Barista in advance to sweeten it with any syrup of your choice. Moreover, the Breve coffee is usually served in different sizes at different coffee chains. However, the standard serving size is 5 to 6 oz (150ml to 180ml) cappuccino cups. In glass mugs, the display of Breve Coffee is really amazing. The three different layers – coffee, then half and half, and finally foam on the top, adds to the appealing look in addition to the taste of this drink.
What exactly is half-and-half?If you are confused about the term half and half, then here is the perfect explanation for you. It is a mixture of half light cream and half whole milk in equal proportions. The fat content is about 10 to 12% and you will get an overall creamy product. The half and half is not as heavy as the cream itself. Moreover, you cannot whip it like a normal cream. But the richness and taste it brings to an Espresso in terms of a Breve is really enchanting.
How to Make Café Breve at Home?You don’t always order coffee from some coffee shop outside. Most of the time, coffee lovers like to prepare their own coffee at home. Here we will talk about a step by step method of preparing Breve Coffee in the comfort of your home. Making a perfect coffee drink involves several important elements. There are a few important things to think about in addition to whichever recipe you choose. Some of these key elements in step by step preparation of Breve coffee are:
High Quality beansThe most important ingredient of any coffee is the high quality beans. It is better if you roast the beans yourself. However, if you are not into roasting the beast yourself, the sooner you buy them after roasting, the better. Also, it is advised to use it instantly after grinding. I bet the drink will be subpar if you skip this step.
Make EspressoAfter that, prepare the espresso shots. You may prepare 1-2 shots depending on how strong you want your Breve coffee to be? Many types of espresso makers are available for home use. It is advised to get one that works best according your space and your budget. In the later section, you may find some of the best espresso makers that you may use for making Breve Coffee.
Steam ProperlyThis is the most important and critical step in making a Breve coffee. For better frothing, you need to start with very cold half and half, since it does not froth well at room temperature. It is better to take milk in ice cold form, straight out of the fridge. In addition, steaming the liquid in a metal jug will yield the best results as well. Using a steaming wand, you can easily steam the dairy products. Most of the good espresso machines are equipped with a built-in steaming wand. It is not advisable to have too much foam for a latte. Steaming at or near the water surface will produce the most foam. Keeping the tip about 1/4 inch beneath the surface is the best method for steaming half-and-half without too much foam. The best way to achieve the right consistency is to tilt the milk jug so that the liquid swirls around. This will give the finished product some very nice texture. Your half-and-half should make a light hissing sound, and swirl around in your cup in a pleasing manner without making thick bubbles. Don’t be afraid to experiment around with different placements. It is advisable not to overfill the jug in the beginning, as due to steaming the half and half will expand.
Careful PouringThis is the final step in providing you with delicious Breve Coffee. Now pour half-and-half into the serving mug once you’ve poured the espresso in. You must pour in as slowly as possible. With a spoon, hold the foam back while pouring. And finally, you can top off your drink with some foam after you pour the desired amount. When the transition from espresso to milk is in the form of a subtle fade, you know you’ve achieved success.
Add Sweetener (Optional)While Breve coffee is an unsweetened coffee, some people prefer sweetness in everything. Therefore, as an additional step, if you wish to make the drink taste sweeter, you may use a syrup of your choice.
What is Espresso?Every one of us is aware of the term Espresso, right? However, if you don’t know the true meaning, then don’t get confused. Espresso is the most concentrated form of coffee, which is served in shots. It is a coffee brewing method where the coffee beans are forced under pressure of 9–10 bars through a small amount of nearly boiling water.
Some Other Varieties of EspressoWe have seen that Coffee Breve is made using Espresso shots. However, it is not the only coffee that is prepared using Espresso. Some other most popular beverages, using Espresso as the key ingredient are:
- Café Americano
- Café Mochas
- Café Romano
What is the Difference between a Latte and a Breve Coffee?Most of the people, sometimes cannot differentiate between a Latte and Breve. However, there is a distinct difference between the two. The main difference between these is the type of milk or cream used in their preparation. A latte is prepared using a steamed milk such as whole milk. Whereas, a Breve is prepared using the steamed half and half instead of milk.
Best Espresso Makers for Breve CoffeeSome of the best espresso makers that you can get for brewing some delicious Breve coffee are:
What is a Breve at Starbucks?
If you are Starbucks, then what should you order if you have cravings for Breve Coffee? Simply just ask for Breve or Café Breve and you will be served this delicious coffee. Here you will get the same Breve, where you will have the half and half instead of steamed milk.
At some Starbucks chain, if you see Breve not listed in the list, don’t get this notion that you cannot order one. Just ask your Barista for Latte Breve or Breve coffee and you will definitely get one.
What is Breve Coffee at Dutch Bros?
Similar to Starbucks, Dutch Bros is another drive thru coffee chain that has expanded well throughout the US. However, for those not familiar with Dutch Bros, their terminologies are a bit different ones.
For example, for Breve, they don’t use the term half and half. Rather, they call it the Kick Me Mix, which is a quite strange term. So, if you will just ask them for Breve, they will give you the non-fat milk version. However, if you use the Kick Me Mix term, then definitely you will get the thicker and creamier Breve Café.
Pronunciation of Breve Coffee
There is no rocket science in pronouncing the Breve. It is a simple one syllable word and you may simply pronounce it as breev or brev. So, while ordering your coffee or discussing with another coffee addict, don’t be shy in calling it a breev or brev.
Calories in Coffee Breve
Till here, you already know that Breve is prepared using a half-and-half instead of milk. Therefore, it definitely contains much more calories as compared to a standard latte or cup of cappuccino.
The fat percentage in a half and a half are 7 to 15 percent greater as compared to a whole milk. Regarding calories, there are different calculations. However, keeping the size of a medium cup (16 oz.), a Breve coffee may have calories from 490 calories to 600 calories. Same serving of a whole milk coffee contains around 300 calories at max. So, you can see that a Breve coffee has almost double amount of calories as compared to the whole milk café.
Is Coffee Breve Good for Health?
This question greatly depends on your health conditions as well as consumption of Breve. If you are healthy and fit, then a cup per two to three days is not going to hurt you at all. However, the heavy cream, amount of fat and the calories of this coffee are somewhat really higher.
So, in order to enjoy the real essence of Breve coffee, it is advised to consume it in smaller servings. In this way, your cravings for Breve will be fulfilled in a healthier way.
Breve Coffee – Final Thoughts
Finally, coming towards the conclusion, I have shed light on almost every aspect of café Breve. The drink is really delicious with noteworthy taste and aroma. You must try this yourself at home with own espresso maker and then share with us your recipes and brewing methods in comments.