Frappe vs. Latte: The Key Differences Easy Explained 2024

Stuck between a Frappe and a Latte on the menu? Yeah, those fancy coffee names can be confusing. Here’s the thing: both are delicious, but they’re totally different drinks. Frappe vs. Latte?

We’re about to decode their key features to help you pick your perfect cup, whether you’re craving a creamy chill or a smooth hot sip.

Explaining the Drinks: Frappe and Latte Basics

Defining Frappe

Originating in Greece, the frappe is a foam-covered iced coffee drink made by blending instant coffee with waterice, and often sugar. So it is a cool and refreshing drink, perfect for hot summer days. The Frappe is typically served in a tall glass.

 A glass of frappe coffee with a layer of froth on top
by Pinterest

Defining Latte

A Latte is a hot drink crafted from a shot of espresso combined with steamed milk, and usually topped with a small amount of milk foam. It has deep roots in Italy, where the term ‘latte’ simply means ‘milk,’ reflecting its significant dairy component. In a traditional latte, the harmonious blend of robust espresso and creamy milk creates a balanced flavor.

 A glass latte with frothy milk on a table.
by Pinterest

Composition and Preparation Techniques

Making a Frappe

To make a frappe, you’ll need:

  • Instant coffee: Typically at room temperature
  • Ice: The cornerstone for the frappe’s slushy texture
  • Milk: Adds creaminess to the blend
  • Flavorings and sweeteners (optional): Can include syrups, sugar, or chocolate

The preparation is straightforward:

No Blending (Traditional):

  1. Combine instant coffee, sugar, and a small amount of water.
  2. Whip the mixture vigorously until foamy.
  3. Add ice and milk (optional) and stir or shake to combine.

Blending (Modern):

  1. Combine instant coffee, sugar, water, and ice in a blender.
  2. Blend until smooth and frothy.
  3. Add milk (optional) and blend again.

You’ll notice that the texture of a frappe is thicker, often like that of a milkshake, and it has a creamy coolness due to the ice.

Making a Latte

latte is a classic coffeehouse drink that consists of:

  • Espresso shots: Freshly made, providing the robust coffee base
  • Steamed milk: Contributes to a silky, warm texture
  • Milk foam: A light topping typically created during the steaming process

To craft a latte, simply follow these steps:

  1. Brew one or more espresso shots directly into your cup.
  2. Steam your milk until it’s hot and has a smooth, velvety foam.
  3. Pour the steamed milk over the espresso in the cup, holding back the foam with a spoon to create layers.
  4. Spoon a small amount of foam on top. If you’re feeling artistic, pour the milk with a flourish to create latte art on the surface.

The texture of a latte is smooth and rich, with a creamy layer of froth adding a tactile experience to every sip. The layer of milk foam often serves as a canvas for baristas to create intricate designs, known as latte art.

Analyzing Flavor Profiles and Customizations

BaseInstant coffee, ice, milk (dairy or non-dairy)Espresso, steamed milk
Coffee FlavorWeaker, masked by sweetnessStronger, espresso base
Flavor OptionsWide variety of syrups (vanilla, chocolate, etc.)Limited syrups (vanilla, caramel, chocolate)
Customization (Milk)LimitedSoy, almond, oat milk options
Customization (Sweetener)Syrups, sugarSyrups, sugar
Customization (Other)Whipped cream, flavored syrups, cocoa powderSpices (cinnamon, nutmeg)
Overall TasteSweeter, dessert-likeBalanced coffee flavor, customizable sweetness

Both drinks offer a spectrum of possibilities, with the frappe often leaning towards the sweeter, dessert-like end and the latte providing a warm embrace of coffee enriched with customizable touches. Whether it’s the cold, thick blend of a frappe or the smooth creaminess of a latte, your perfect cup is waiting to be crafted.

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Want to know how a cappuccino compares to a latte? Read our blog post on Cappuccino vs. Latte.

Cultural Impact and Modern Trends

As you explore the coffee landscape, you’ll notice that both the frappe and the latte have made significant cultural impacts and have adapted to modern trends. Each has its unique story, from the frappe’s breezy Greek origins to the comforting presence of the latte in cafés and homes worldwide.

Frappe: From Greek Summer to Global Enjoyment

Originally hailing from Greece, the frappe is a testament to iced coffee’s worldwide popularity, especially during summer. Seen as a hallmark of Greek coffee culture, this frothy, caffeine-infused beverage is traditionally made with instant coffee, water, sugar, and ice—simplicity that has allowed it to spread globally.

The frappe laid groundwork for other iced coffee variations, including the Frappuccino, a term popularized and trademarked by Starbucks, contributing to the global standardization of iced coffee drinks.

Latte: Coffeehouse Staple to Home Delight

The latte began as a luxurious emblem of Italy’s coffee mastery—cappuccino’s creamier cousin. Not limited to Italy any longer, lattes have become a beloved staple in cafés across the globe. Their popularity has promoted the artistry of baristas who craft intricate latte art, making this drink a visual treat.

Moreover, lattes have transcended the café scene, becoming a staple in homes where coffee enthusiasts replicate the coffeehouse experience. The evolution of the latte has also seen variations like the iced latte, allowing for a cool twist on the classic for those hot days or for coffee lovers who prefer their drinks chilled.

There are many different Latte Recipes, including:

FAQ – Frappe vs. Latte

What is the difference between a frappe and latte?

A frappe is a cold, often blended coffee drink made usually with instant coffee, sugar, water, and ice. Lattes, conversely, are a hot beverage made with espresso and steamed milk, known for their smooth texture. Some cafes offer iced lattes, but traditionally, lattes are served hot.

Do frappes have more caffeine than lattes?

The caffeine content in a frappe can vary widely and often hinges on how it’s made, typically using instant or drip coffee. A traditional latte is made with a shot of espresso. Due to this, an 8 oz cup of drip coffee generally contains more caffeine than a single shot of espresso, making a frappe in this instance higher in caffeine.

Is A Frappuccino stronger than a latte?

A Frappuccino, a specific type of frappe made popular by Starbucks, often contains less coffee and more sugar compared to a latte. As a latte consists primarily of espresso and milk, it usually has a stronger coffee flavor relative to the more dessert-like quality of a Frappuccino.

If you liked our blog post on “Frappe vs. Latte”, don’t forget to leave us a comment down and share your thoughts on this topic.

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Wadim Urbanowitsch

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