Reader’s Questions: Does the coffee bean or taste matter when used for a latte?

By | October 16, 2015

At PurelyCoffeeBeans, I’ve answered lots of questions over the years. You’ll find the questions and their answers scattered throughout the site!

I’m always open to more questions, if you’re frustrated or curious, why don’t you drop me a line! This week we welcome …

Does the coffee bean or taste matter when used for a latte?

by Fadi Draghici
(Bucharest, Romania)


I usually find normal coffee or espresso shots too strong, therefore I’m a heavy latte drinker. So I was wondering, should I opt for normal Lavazza Espresso roast found over the shelf, or should I actually purchase Sumatra or Java types of beans?


Dear Fadi,

This is a great question. Many coffee drinkers do find espresso too strong. However, I think you need to think about what you mean by ‘strong’. This term can describe a number of qualities in coffee so it can be a little confusing.

The most obvious meaning refers to the amount of caffeine and/or the resulting caffeine kick. Some varieties of Arabica and most Robusta tend to have a much higher amount of caffeine. This also explains why espresso tends to have a higher ‘kick’; there is a dose of Robusta in there, especially if it’s proper Italian espresso.

lavazza-espresso.jpgThe second meaning of ‘strong’ refers to the roasting of the coffee, and this refers to whether the beans are light, medium or dark roasted. Often, casual drinkers think that dark roasted coffee has a ‘strong’ taste. It does, but the coffees like Java or Sumatra tend to be darker roasted to enhance the ‘coffee’ flavor.

Lastly, ‘strong’ can also simply mean a stronger brew due to the amount of coffee used. Most people use about 10 grams of coffee per cup to make their morning brew. I tend to use about 15 grams per cup, because I prefer a cup with more ‘body’. There is nothing worse than weak coffee, ie. too much water was used with the coffee.

If you are drinking a lot of latte, you may find that the milk has too many calories! If you have a lively lifestyle, then it’ll be easy to burn off the calories! Drinking proper espresso is an acquired taste, enhanced by drinking good quality espresso and destroyed by many of the poor quality drinks served.

So think about what you find too strong about espresso. And give Lavazza Espresso a try, see if you like it! Costco has some nice Sumatra and Java coffees… Let me know what your preference is!