Mocha vs Lungo

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Table of Contents
A cup of coffee and a book on a table.

Are you feeling overwhelmed by the myriad of coffee options at your local cafe? Choosing whether to order a Mocha or a Lungo may seem like an insignificant decision, but each brew brings its unique flavor profile and experience.

This article is designed to simplify these intriguing coffee drinks for you, comparing their origins, brewing processes, and tastes. Let’s dive into the world of Mocha and Lungo – two titan beverages in the realm of caffeine delights!

Mocha vs Lungo

Distinguishing between a mocha and a lungo comes down to ingredients and flavor profiles. A mocha is a chocolate-flavored espresso drink that blends espresso, steamed milk, and chocolate syrup, often topped with whipped cream.

It offers a sweet and creamy taste, making it a favorite for those who enjoy both coffee and chocolate. In contrast, a lungo is essentially a longer espresso shot, achieved by using more water during extraction.

This results in a larger volume and a slightly milder flavor than a standard espresso. While a lungo emphasizes the nuances of the coffee bean, a mocha delights with its rich, chocolaty undertones.

Key Takeaways

  • Mocha is a coffee drink that combines espresso, steamed milk, and chocolate, while lungo is a type of espresso brewed with more water for a larger volume.
  • Mocha originated in Yemen during the 15th century and has a rich, chocolatey flavor, while lungo originated in Italy during the early 20th century and has a more intense and bold taste.
  • The brewing process for mocha involves combining espresso and steamed milk, while lungo requires using more water to extract flavors from the coffee grounds.
  • Mocha has less caffeine compared to lungo.


Mocha refers to a type of coffee made by combining espresso and chocolate, while lungo is an Italian term for “long,” referring to a type of espresso that is brewed with more water for a larger volume.

Mocha Definition

Mocha is a type of coffee. It gets its name from Mocha, a city in Yemen. This place used to be an important trade center for coffee beans. In the coffee world, ‘mocha’ can mean two things.

The first is mocha beans from Yemen that have a strong earthy taste. The second meaning is the sweet drink we all know and love! A mocha drink has espresso and steamed milk in it, just like a latte.

But what makes it different are the flavors – nutty, sweet and chocolaty!

Lungo Definition

Lungo is a type of coffee. It’s like an espresso but not as strong. This is because more water is used to make it than in an espresso shot. In Italian, Lungo means “long.” That name talks about the longer time it takes to pull a lungo shot from the machine.

When you order a lungo at the coffee shop, they use twice the normal amount of water for your drink. Some companies, like Nespresso, even offer options with 2-3 times more water! By adding this extra water, the flavor of a lungo isn’t as intense as other types of coffee drinks.

Historical Origins

Mocha originated in Yemen during the 15th century, while lungo has its origins in Italy during the early 20th century.

Mocha Origins

Mocha coffee started in the city of Mocha by the Red Sea. It gets its name from this place. The beans for Mocha came from Al Moka, a Yemeni port city. These beans gave it a nice mix of coffee and chocolate tastes.

Today people know “mocha” as these yummy flavors together, but first, it was just a name for the special beans from Al Moka’s port city. Some get mocha mixed up with lungo which is another type of espresso, but they are not the same thing.

Lungo Origins

Lungo, an Italian-style coffee beverage, originated in Italy and was later popularized worldwide. Although its exact historical origins are not entirely clear, lungo is closely associated with the birthplace of espresso in Italy.

The appreciation and love for coffee in the country led to the development of lungo as a way to enjoy a longer and more flavorful cup of coffee. Introduced by soldiers after World War II, lungo holds a special place in Italian coffee culture and continues to be enjoyed by coffee lovers around the world.

Brewing Process

In the brewing process, the main difference between mocha and lungo lies in the water and coffee ratio, extraction time, pressure, and temperature.

Water and Coffee Ratio

The water and coffee ratio is an important factor in brewing a lungo shot. For a lungo, the standard ratio is 1 part coffee to 3 or even 4 parts water, depending on how strong you want your drink to be.

This means that for every ounce of coffee grounds, you should use about 3 to 4 ounces of hot water. Tamping the coffee grounds down firmly before brewing is also crucial for an even extraction in a lungo shot.

It’s worth noting that if you’re using lightly roasted coffee beans, they may require more hot water to extract properly in order to achieve the desired flavor and strength.

Extraction Time

The extraction time for a lungo is longer than an espresso. For a perfect espresso, it takes about 20 to 25 seconds to extract the coffee flavors. On the other hand, a lungo has a shorter extraction time of around 30 seconds.

The faster process of extracting the coffee in a lungo means that it doesn’t capture as much flavor from the beans. This results in a less intense taste compared to an espresso. However, because the coffee is in contact with water for longer during extraction, a lungo can have a more bitter taste.

So if you prefer stronger and more intense flavors, go for an espresso shot instead of a lungo shot.

Pressure and Temperature

The pressure and temperature during the brewing process of mocha and lungo coffees have minimal impact on caffeine extraction. What really affects the flavor and consistency of the coffee shots are factors like the type of beans, size of grind, water pressure, and temperature.

It’s important to understand that different extraction methods have been studied for their sensory aspects. When it comes to choosing between mocha and lungo, your personal preferences and habits play a big role in making the decision.

Flavor and Aroma Differences

The flavor of mocha is rich and chocolatey, while lungo has a more intense and bold taste. The aroma of mocha is often described as sweet and inviting, while lungo has a stronger and bolder aroma.


Mocha is a delicious coffee drink made with espresso, steamed milk, and chocolate. It has a sweeter and milder taste compared to regular coffee. The flavor of mocha is strongly associated with chocolate, making it a popular choice for those who love the combination of coffee and chocolate.

Mochas are known for their creamy, sweet, nutty, and chocolatey taste. So if you’re in the mood for something indulgent and rich in flavor, a mocha might be the perfect choice for you.


A lungo is a longer shot of espresso, typically served in a 3.7 oz cup. Unlike regular espresso or ristretto, lungo has a milder coffee taste because it’s made with more water. This extra water increases the extraction time and results in more soluble solids being extracted from the coffee grounds.

As a result, lungo has slightly more caffeine than other espresso variants. So if you prefer a larger and milder coffee drink with a little extra kick of caffeine, lungo might be the perfect choice for you.

Caffeine Content

Mocha has less caffeine compared to Lungo.

Mocha Caffeine Content

Mocha contains about the same amount of caffeine as a coffee drink that has hot chocolate added to it. The exact amount of caffeine in mocha can vary depending on different factors, like what kind of coffee beans are used and how it’s made.

Generally, Robusta coffee beans have more caffeine than Arabica beans. On average, raw Arabica coffee has around 0.9% to 1.5% caffeine content (based on dry weight), while Robusta coffee has roughly twice as much.

A typical cup of mocha coffee, which is about 12 fluid ounces or 355 milliliters, contains approximately 152 milligrams of caffeine or about 12.67 milligrams per fluid ounce (42.83 milligrams per 100 milliliters).

Lungo Caffeine Content

A lungo coffee, also known as a long shot of espresso, contains slightly more caffeine than regular espresso. The amount of caffeine in a lungo can vary depending on factors such as the type of coffee beans used and the brewing process.

On average, a lungo contains around 50-100 mg of caffeine per ounce. Lungo blends often have 20% more coffee per capsule compared to espresso blends. This means that the caffeine content per brewed espresso capsule can range from approximately 55 to 65 mg.

So if you’re looking for a stronger kick of caffeine in your cup, choosing a lungo might be the way to go!

Uses in Popular Drinks

Mocha is commonly used in popular drinks like caffè mocha, a combination of coffee and chocolate, while lungo is often used in beverages like americano or as a base for lattes.

Mocha in Popular Drinks

Mocha is a popular flavor that is often incorporated into various types of drinks. Here are some examples:

  • Mocha Latte: This drink combines the rich taste of mocha with steamed milk, creating a creamy and indulgent beverage.
  • White Mocha: Similar to a mocha latte, but made with white chocolate instead of regular chocolate. It has a sweeter and milder flavor.
  • Mocha Frappuccino: A blended ice drink that mixes mocha with milk, ice, and sometimes whipped cream. It’s perfect for hot summer days.
  • Mocha Cappuccino: A classic cappuccino infused with the delicious flavor of mocha. It has a balanced taste of strong coffee and chocolate.
  • Iced Mocha: Cold brewed coffee or espresso mixed with chocolate syrup or powder, served over ice. It’s refreshing and energizing.

Lungo in Popular Drinks

Lungo is a popular type of coffee drink that is used in various drinks. It is loved by many for its unique taste and intensity. Here are some popular drinks that include lungo:

  • Latte: A latte is made with a combination of espresso and steamed milk. Lungo can be used as the base for a latte to give it a stronger coffee flavor.
  • Macchiato: A macchiato is an espresso shot topped with a small amount of steamed milk. Using lungo instead of traditional espresso can add more depth to the overall taste.
  • Cappuccino: A cappuccino consists of equal parts espresso, steamed milk, and frothed milk. Lungo can be used instead of regular espresso to create a bolder cappuccino.
  • Americano: An Americano is made by diluting an espresso shot with hot water. While lungo is not the same as an Americano, it can be used as an alternative to create a longer and more intense coffee drink.
  • Mocha: A mocha is made by combining espresso, chocolate syrup or powder, and steamed milk. Using lungo instead of regular espresso can provide a stronger coffee flavor in the mocha.

Choosing Between Mocha and Lungo

Consider your personal preferences and the specific occasion when deciding between mocha and lungo.

Considering personal preferences

When it comes to choosing between a lungo and a mocha, personal preferences play a vital role. If you like your coffee on the milder side with a longer aftertaste, then a lungo might be more suitable for you.

Lungos are known for their smoother and less intense flavor profile. On the other hand, if you prefer a strong and robust coffee experience, then a mocha would be the way to go. Mochas have an intense flavor with the added richness of chocolate.

It all boils down to what kind of taste you enjoy in your cup of joe.

Determine the appropriate occasion

To determine the appropriate occasion for choosing between mocha and lungo, you can consider your personal preferences and the specific circumstances. If you prefer a strong and concentrated coffee flavor, espresso-based drinks like lungo would be suitable for enjoying on their own or as a base for other mixed beverages.

Lungo shots are larger in volume due to the additional water used during brewing. On the other hand, if you enjoy a combination of coffee and chocolate flavors with milk, mocha-based drinks may be more suitable.

Mochas are often enjoyed as indulgent treats or dessert-like beverages. Consider whether you want a bold coffee experience or something sweeter and creamy when deciding which drink is best suited for the occasion at hand.


Mocha and lungo are two different coffee drinks with their own unique flavors and characteristics. Mocha is a delicious combination of coffee and chocolate, perfect for those with a sweet tooth.

Lungo offers a longer brewing process that brings out more bitterness and fruity notes in the coffee. Whether you prefer the indulgent taste of mocha or the boldness of lungo, it ultimately comes down to personal preference and the occasion you’re enjoying your coffee.


What is the main difference between a Lungo and a Mocha?

The main difference between Lungo and Mocha is the amount of coffee used and how it’s prepared. A lungo uses an espresso machine to pull an espresso shot with twice as much water, while a mocha is made with milk and espresso topped with chocolate.

Can I make both types of coffee using my espresso machine?

Yes, you can prepare both types of drinks using an espresso machine. For lungo, you double the amount of water for brewing; for mocha, combine a single shot of espresso with steamed milk and cocoa.

How does Lungo compare to other kinds of Espresso drinks?

Lungos are like espressos but use double the amount of water so they’re not as concentrated as regular espressos or other similar coffee types such as cappuccino or macchiato—those typically have added milk.

What are Lungo pods?

Lungo pods contain ground coffee specifically packaged for use in certain kinds of machines that allow you to brew lungos easily without needing a traditional bed coffee grinder setup like many coffees require.

What does ‘Mocha’ mean in the world of coffee?

In the world of coffee, Mocha refers to an Espresso-based drink made by combining hot milk with one-third espresso—a kind similar to latte vs macchiato—and usually includes sweet cocoa powder or chocolate syrup on top.

How different is Americano from Lungo?

An Americano has hot water added on top after pulling a shot making it taste somewhat diluted unlike lungo which has more water pulled through same quantity grounds resulting in altered flavor- mild compared to concentrated counterparts like their stronger sibling –espresso.

About the Author:
Emily Thompson is an enthusiastic guide in the world of coffee, sharing her expertise in flavors, brewing techniques, and cultural significance. Her journey, fueled by a deep love for coffee, involves educating coffee enthusiasts of all levels to enhance their coffee experiences. Emily's content spans from brewing guides to the cultural importance of coffee, emphasizing ethical sourcing and sustainability.