A real coffee lover should get educated about the different terminologies used to explain how your drink will look, feel, and taste. The cappuccino is an Italian drink made of espresso, steamed milk, and frothed milk. If you don’t know how to order the right cappuccino, you’ve come to the right place. In this article, you’ll learn about the right way to customize it to get a dry, bone dry, or wet cappuccino.
Everything About a Cappuccino
Before diving into the details involving different versions of cappuccino, it will be interesting to know where this drink came from. In medieval times, people were used to boiling coffee, prepared according to the traditional Ottoman style.
However, in the 17th century, Europeans started to filter their coffee beans and enjoy filtered and brewed coffee more than the boiled ones. The drink was popular in Austria and had the same color as the Capuchin friars’ robes.
However, the drink became popular in Italy, and cappuccino started to gain its fame at the beginning of the 20th century.
What is Wet Cappuccino?
The wet cappuccino is the traditional cappuccino that contains more steamed than frothed and foamed milk (Can You Froth Half-and-Half? Can it be steamed?). This is the classic cappuccino that you’re likely to order and drink at your favorite café. This standard cappuccino has a silky creamy texture that appeals to most people.
If you’re not a big fan of the extra bitter taste, the wet cappuccino (Frappuccino vs Cappuccino – What are the differences?) will work for you as the milk makes the taste silkier and less bitter. If you tell your barista that you would like a wet cappuccino, you’re basically telling them that you want more milk and less foam.
What Does it Mean to Have a Dry Cappuccino? How Do You Make it?
As you expected, a dry cappuccino is the opposite of a wet one. In a dry cappuccino, you will have less steamed milk and more frothed milk or foam. The size of the beverage stays the same as the terminology focuses on the composition of the drink.
People who order dry cappuccinos typically add frothed milk or microfoam to form air bubbles, instead of it being steamed milk. Microfoam has smaller air bubbles than frothed milk.
Because there’s little milk in your drink, your espresso will have a bolder and more prominent taste. It’s a suitable beverage for people who like an extra punch or edge and don’t mind the bitterness of the coffee.
You can make the dry cappuccino in several ways, each time changing the amount of steamed milk added to your espresso, and as a result determining how dry your cappuccino will be. You might want to try with different amounts to reach the most favorable taste.
What Does Bone Dry Cappuccino Mean?
Bone dry cappuccino will get rid of steamed milk altogether. This is the boldest version of the cappuccino because you will have the strongest taste, flavor, and aroma of the espresso.
You prepare bone dry cappuccino by adding frothed milk or foam to the espresso, and there will be no steamed milk added at all. This is an excellent choice for someone who prefers rich and strong espresso shots.
At the same time, you would still enjoy the creaminess of the frothed milk that makes your drink feel velvety. Your drink will resemble a macchiato but will have less foam – What’s a Espresso Macchiato?
A bone dry cappuccino isn’t that easy to prepare as it needs a skilled barista who will spend a significant amount of time to make this distinctive drink. Moreover, she or he will need a lot of milk to create incredible foam on top of your beverage.
You can create latte art on all types, but it’s harder when the amount of steamed milk decreases like in a dry or bone dry cappuccino.
What is the Difference Between Wet and Dry Foam?
Foam adds a luxurious and silky feel to your espresso and is also used to create latte art. This milk foam is created when the steam wand is used to force air and water vapor into the steamed milk. The proteins in the milk unfold and interact with each other.
The protein chains in milk are polar, as one end is hydrophilic while the other is hydrophobic. The Hydrophilic ends are also attracted to fat particles, and this is why full cream milk is used to make foam. This creates a wet foam that blends beautifully with your espresso shot to create a silky drink that you can enjoy as a whole.
When skimmed milk is used for foamed milk or steamed milk, there won’t be enough fat in the milk to bind with the protein’s hydrophilic ends. As a matter of fact, hydrophobic ends bond with the air bubbles, creating dry foam.
The dry foam feels more like a separate fluffy layer of milk foam added on top of the drink. In most cases, your barista will add it using a spoon, as it looks like whipped cream.
What Does Extra Dry Foam Mean?
Microfoam is a luxurious version of wet foam, where the bubbles of the foamed milk are too small, so they’re hardly seen on top of your cappuccino. Nevertheless, they’re felt when you take a sip of your drink. Extra dry foam is the exact opposite of microfoam.
The extra dry milk foam will sit as a separate layer of milk foam on top of your bone dry cappuccino, and won’t blend with your shot of espresso. The bone dry milk foam is quite viscous and foamy and as a result, can’t be used to create latte art. It will sit on top of your drink as a separate layer that doesn’t mix with the coffee below.
What’s the Difference Between a Super Wet Cappuccino and a Latte?
How wet or dry it feels depends on the ratio of steamed to frothed milk or foam. An extra wet version has more steamed milk than a wet one, sometimes double or even triple the amount. This drink will have a rich texture as the milk blends effortlessly with the espresso shot to create a homogenous drink that you can enjoy as a whole.
Due to the high concentration of steamed milk, a super wet cappuccino can also be considered as a latte or flat white because it contains zero foam. A large amount of steamed milk neutralizes the bitterness of the espresso shot.
Most avid cappuccino drinkers wouldn’t consider this super wet version a cappuccino since it doesn’t have any frothed milk. Most coffee shops will consider a super wet cappuccino a flat white or a latte.
There are numerous ways in which you can enjoy your favorite cappuccino. After knowing these terms, you can still adjust the quantities to add the right amount of milk or foam to create a personalized drink that matches your taste.
Every type of milk will have a different result when steamed or frothed before adding it to your espresso shot. You can also choose to add a special flavor like hazelnut or caramel to give your personalized cappuccino more character. So next time you’re up for a cup of cappuccino, don’t be shy to give some of these options a try.