Is Lungo a Good Coffee?

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A cup of coffee with steam coming out of it, Lungo
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A cup of coffee with steam coming out of it, Lungo

Do you find yourself pondering over your local cafe’s coffee menu, unsure of whether a lungo is the right choice for you? A little known fact is that lungo, Italian for “long,” is a type of coffee specially brewed to be stronger than regular joe but not as intense as an espresso.

This blog post will guide you in understanding what sets lungo apart from other types of coffee and help judge if this long shot suits your taste buds. Read on and become a savvy sipper!

Is Lungo a Good Coffee?

The appreciation of lungo, like all coffee variations, largely hinges on individual preferences.

Originating from the Italian word for “long,” lungo is made by passing more water through espresso grounds, resulting in a longer shot. This method dilutes the intensity of an espresso while retaining a richer profile than a regular black coffee.

For those who find standard espresso shots too strong, yet crave a deeper flavor than Americano or drip coffee, a lungo can be an excellent middle ground. Ultimately, whether it’s “good” or not depends on one’s personal taste palate.

Key Takeaways

  • Lungo coffee is a type of espresso-based drink that originated in Italy and is known for its longer extraction time compared to regular espresso shots.
  • Lungo coffee has a unique flavor profile that is smoky, earthy, and slightly bitter, offering a mild sweetness similar to caramel.
  • Caffeine content in lungo coffee is slightly higher than in regular coffee but lower than an espresso shot.
  • Personal preference plays a big role in determining whether lungo coffee is good or not since it depends on individual taste preferences for flavor, strength, bitterness, and overall experience.

What is Lungo Coffee?

Lungo coffee is a type of espresso-based drink that originated in Italy and is known for its longer extraction time compared to regular espresso shots.

Definition and origin

Lungo coffee comes from Italy. It means “long” in Italian. Lungo is a kind of espresso, but it’s not the same thing. To make lungo, more water goes through the coffee grounds. The process takes more time than regular espresso.

This makes for a longer drink that’s not as strong as normal espresso but stronger than regular coffee.

Preparation of Lungo coffee

Lungo coffee is prepared using an espresso machine or pod coffee machine. Here’s how it is made:

  1. Grind the coffee beans to a coarser consistency than for regular espresso.
  2. Place the ground coffee into the portafilter of the espresso machine or insert the coffee pod into the designated spot in the pod coffee machine.
  3. Tamp down the coffee grounds evenly in the portafilter, ensuring a level surface.
  4. Attach the portafilter to the espresso machine and start brewing.
  5. The water is forced through the packed coffee grounds at a slower rate than for a regular espresso shot, allowing more time for extraction.
  6. The longer brewing time results in a larger volume of coffee being extracted, giving it a milder flavor compared to an espresso shot.
  7. The ideal lungo ratio is about 1: 3 – one part coffee to three parts water – but this can be adjusted according to personal preference.
  8. Once the desired amount of liquid has been extracted, stop brewing and remove the cup from under the spout.

Lungo vs other espresso-based drinks

Lungo coffee is often compared to other espresso-based drinks such as Americanos, espressos, and Ristrettos.

Lungo vs Americano

While both Lungo and Americano are popular choices among coffee enthusiasts, there are several key differences between the two.

DefinitionA Lungo is essentially a long espresso, made using an espresso machine or pod coffee machine.An Americano is an espresso shot diluted with hot water, resulting in a beverage similar to traditional drip coffee.
StrengthLungo coffee is stronger than regular coffee but less strong than an espresso shot. This is because Lungo coffee is pulled for a longer amount of time with more water, resulting in a larger volume of coffee.The Americano is typically weaker in taste compared to a Lungo, as it is more diluted. This results in a milder flavor profile that is closer to regular coffee than an espresso shot.
Flavour ProfileThe flavor profile of Lungo coffee tends to be smoky and earthy.The flavor of an Americano is dependent on the espresso shot used, but generally, it has a more balanced and less bitter flavor than a Lungo.
Caffeine LevelsCaffeine levels in Lungo coffee are slightly higher than in regular coffee, but less than an espresso shot.The caffeine content in an Americano varies depending on the ratio of water to espresso, but it is generally less concentrated than in a Lungo.

The choice between Lungo and Americano depends on individual preferences in terms of coffee strength, flavor profile, and caffeine levels.

Lungo vs espresso

Lungo coffee and espresso may seem similar, but they have some key differences.

While espresso is a concentrated shot of coffee made with finely ground coffee beans and hot water forced through under pressure, lungo is a longer extraction using more water, resulting in a larger volume of coffee.

This means that espresso has a stronger and more intense flavor compared to lungo, which has a milder taste with subtle caramel-like sweetness. Additionally, lungo generally has lower caffeine content than espresso due to the shorter extraction time.

So if you prefer a bolder and more intense coffee experience, go for espresso. But if you enjoy a milder yet flavorful cup of joe, give lungo a try!

Lungo vs Ristretto

Lungo and ristretto are both types of coffee made using an espresso machine.

The main difference between lungo and ristretto lies in the brewing process. A lungo is a longer shot, which means it is brewed with more water for a longer time than a regular espresso shot. This results in a larger volume of coffee that has a milder flavor with slight bitterness.

A ristretto is the opposite of a lungo—it is brewed with less water, resulting in a smaller volume of coffee that has a more concentrated and intense flavor profile. Ristretto shots tend to have less bitterness and retain more of the bean’s natural sweetness.

So, while both lungo and ristretto are variations of espresso-based drinks, they offer different taste experiences depending on your preferences.

Taste and Caffeine Levels of Lungo Coffee

Lungo coffee has a mild flavor with less intense bitterness compared to regular espresso, offering a caramel-like sweetness.

Flavor profile of Lungo coffee

Lungo coffee has a unique flavor profile that sets it apart from other espresso-based drinks. It is known for its smoky and earthy taste, which appeals to those who enjoy these flavors in their coffee.

Unlike regular coffee, lungo is stronger and less diluted, offering a more intense and bitter flavor. However, it still maintains a mild sweetness, similar to caramel. The longer brewing time and increased water volume give lungo its distinct characteristics.

If you’re looking for a flavorful coffee experience that falls between regular coffee and espresso in terms of strength, lungo is definitely worth trying.

Caffeine content in Lungo coffee

Lungo coffee has a slightly higher caffeine content compared to regular coffee. This is because lungo coffee is made by pulling an espresso shot for a longer time, resulting in more water being used and a larger volume of coffee.

It still has less caffeine than an espresso shot. So if you’re looking for a cup of joe with a moderate amount of caffeine, lungo could be the perfect choice for you. It provides enough energy boost without being too overwhelming.

Conclusion: Is Lungo a good coffee?

Lungo coffee offers a unique flavor profile and a moderate caffeine content, making it a good option for those who enjoy a stronger cup of coffee without the intensity of an espresso shot.

It really depends on what you enjoy in a cup of coffee. If you prefer a milder flavor with hints of caramel-like sweetness, then lungo coffee might be a good option for you. However, if you prefer a more mild and less bitter taste, then other espresso-based drinks like regular espresso or cappuccino might be more suitable for your palate.

Ultimately, it’s all about finding the right balance of flavors that satisfies your own personal preferences when it comes to coffee.


What is lungo coffee?

Lungo coffee is a lessintense espresso shot made by using more water during brewing than a normal espresso shot.

Is lungo a good coffee if I’m not a fan of strong coffees?

Yes! Lungo has low caffeine content and gives off caramellike sweetness, making it great for those who prefer their coffee taste on the mild side.

How does lungo compare to other beverages like double espresso or long black?

A single shot of lungo contains less caffeine when compared to double espresso but slightly more than long black due its longer brewing process also known as ‘longshot’.

Can I add milk in my lungo coffee?

Of course! Adding milk to your Lungo can enhance its flavor, creating something similar to popular drinks such as mocha or flat white.

How do you make a good cup of Lungo Espresso?

Using the right methods of brewing will help get the best out of your Lungo Espresso providing an optimal balance between intensity and sweetness.

About the Author:
Sophia Lewis, a travel blogger with a focus on global coffee cultures, explores coffee traditions from Colombia to Turkey. Her expertise lies in understanding the cultivation, brewing, and enjoyment of coffee in different cultures. Through articles, travel vlogs, and tastings, Sophia brings a global perspective to coffee, emphasizing ethical and sustainable practices, and invites readers to join her community of global coffee enthusiasts.