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Video:How to Create Latte Art

with William Gross

Beautiful latte art is a sign of a perfect espresso drink and a talented barista. With a little practice, you too can learn to create latte art when making espresso drinks. See how it's done!See Transcript

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Transcript:How to Create Latte Art

Hi, I’m William Gross from Joe in Manhattan, and I’m here for About.com. Today, I’m going to show you how to make latte art.

History of Latte Art

While the Italians thought little of the milk foam designs they made while making cappuccinos in Italy, it became the coffee fashion around 1988 and, eventually, the rage across America.

Latte art is used in all specialty shops around the country, and it’s a way to show that the espresso that you’ve pulled and the milk that you steamed are pretty much perfect. So we’re looking at things like contrast, symmetry, if your rosettes or heart or whatever that you’ve made is centered.

Pull a Perfect Espresso Shot

It’s all in the pour. The most notable and noteworthy design is the rosetta, though others include the heart, and variations of these two. Thousands of baristas have perfected this art. It takes the perfect pulled shot of espresso and properly steamed milk – combined with a little wrist and cup action, just the right tip and pour and you’ve got “latte art.”

And it takes practice…practice, practice, practice.

Pouring the Rosetta

To make the rosetta, pour starting in the center of the coffee – let the pitcher rest on the edge of the cup

Shake Pitcher Side to Side

With the cup about halfway to 3/4 full give the pitcher a little side to side shake and you should see the leaves begin to form.

Bring the Pitcher Towards You

Continue the shake and keep pouring in the center. With about 4-6 shakes you begin moving the pitcher back towards you, continuing to shake side to side with a tighter movement.

Draw Through the Leaves

As you near the edge of the cup you want to draw through the leaves with the pour of the milk. Elevate your pour for finer results.

Pouring the Heart

To make the heart, with your cup of espresso and steamed milk ready, start your pour from the side of the cup. Keeping your cup tipped toward the pitcher, slightly.

Move Pour Into the Middle

Once you’re about a quarter of the way up move your pour into the middle. Continuing to tip your pitcher of milk you should start to see what could be called halo milk. Continue to tip and pour your milk and two circles will appear. Follow through the center of them to create and finish the heart.

Design Variations

Here’s a variation of these two designs.

Baristas make hundreds a day and are constantly improving their art of the pour. It takes practice and don’t be disappointed if you can’t do it at first.

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