Lungo coffee drink

If you are a lover of Italian coffee recipes, then you’d appreciate the taste of the Café lungo. This recipe is almost the same as the normal German filter coffee but it has more aroma and another kind of taste.

A lungo is a normal espresso but it is prepared with more water than usual. In other words, the espresso is made with little water while this one has more water. We hope you get the point. So it will extend the brewing time in the machine, it will bring out more aromas from the coffee beans. The coffee can be taken directly (black), but it also forms the basis for other coffee drinks like the latte macchiato. 


By now you might be wondering what the Café Lungo is? Lungo is another name for ‘long’ in Italian. This means that a lungo is an extended espresso (another variation). This drink is quite popular in Italy and other parts of the world. It is offered in different restaurants and coffee shops. You can also make it at home as long as you have an espresso machine.

Those who have the intense taste and diverse taste of the normal espresso may find the taste of a lungo as a surprise, but you’ll love it. Since the brewing process is too long, it will bring out new flavors and some undiscovered aromas from the fine grinds. The aromas from the coffee beans will produce a drink that meets the normal taste of gourmet standards. The taste is just like the espresso, it will give you a beautiful crema.

Do you know what this means? All you need is a good espresso machine, fresh coffee beans, and filtered water to produce a perfect cup of lungo. 


Since guest workers came from Italy after the Second World War, the coffee culture in Italy has gained popularity in other parts of the world. This is because a more aromatic drink could be produced without so much intake of caffeine. After all, the amount of ground coffee is the same, but the quantity of water will be increased.


We know some coffee purists might disagree on this, but there are different ways of preparing espresso. For example, if you’re brewing with a Nespresso machine, all you have to do is adjust the amount of water in other areas.

On the other hand, automatic espresso machines will allow an exact specification or amount of water, so you can do the drink the way you like. For instance, if you use 7g of coffee with 30ml of water to make the classic espresso, you’d need to double the amount to make the lungo, that is 60ml. You can adjust the recipe according to your preference and taste.

If you don't own an espresso machine, but you still want to make the lungo, there is another option. With this technique, you can extend the quantity of the classic espresso with an appropriate amount of filtered boiled water., that is you'd add add hot water to the espresso. This variation is not known as lungo but ‘Americano’. But the American is milder than the lungo.

It is important to note the lungo shouldn't be left to brew for too long as it can quickly turn bitter. Also make sure that you are brewing with the right type of coffee beans, one with a sweet taste.


We recommend using 100% Arabica beans to brew instead of Robusta beans because it has a sweeter taste. As we mentioned, the quality of the brew is dependent on the quality of the coffee beans. Can the coffee beans survive the brewing method without giving an Off or bitter taste?

The Robusta beans are what you’ll find in instant coffee. The taste is more intense, what some people call bitter. But the Arabica beans from different countries (single-origin beans will produce a delicious Café Lungo). We advise that you try coffee beans from different regions to know the one that fits your taste.

In addition to the type of coffee beans, the kind of water you use plays a major role. As with the classic espresso, the water should be a good one, filtered water. If you can, set the water hardness to be around 7-8 degrees using a water filter. But if you can do this, use a clean cloth to filter the water.

If the water is not good enough it will transfer its bad taste to our final cup, so you have to be careful about this.

By now you should have guessed that this drink is good for those who can't handle the bold favors of an espresso. The drink will have a longer brewing time, so it will have a milder taste. For the lungo, we recommend using a light or medium roasted espresso beans. 


What You’ll Need

  • 7-10 grams of freshly roasted coffee beans
  • Hot water (temperature should be within 90 to 96 degrees Celsius.
  • Espresso machine
  • Burr grinder


  1. Pour hot water into the espresso machine to preheat it.
  2. Grind the coffee beans and pour them directly to the portafilter.
  3. Tamp the espresso grounds properly in the portafilter.
  4. Place the portafilter into the machine and pull a shot.
  5. Stop the machine after 50 seconds.
  6. Stir the lungo and enjoy


The amount of caffeine contained in a lungo has been a debatable issue. Some people say it contains more caffeine than the classic espresso shot. However, the caffeine content in coffee drinks depends more on the type of beans and water used to make the drink. Both drinks contain the same amount of coffee grounds, so there won't be more caffeine in the lungo. If you want a better caffeine kick in the morning, we recommend making a ristretto instead, you can even take up to 2 shots of it.



You might be thinking that the Americano is just espresso and hot water, but that's not just what it is. An Americano requires adding a certain amount of water. For an Americano, you’ll just have to pull a classic shot of espresso then add a certain amount of water depending on the recipe while the long black requires adding one shot of espresso to equal parts of hot water. 

Either way, you’d be adding water after the brewing process has been completed, while for the lungo, more water is used during the brewing process. Although the beverages are weaker in strength (caffeine content), they have different flavors. You may not notice the smoky flavors that are usually found in a lungo inside an Americano.


We’ve already told you how the lungo is different from the classic espresso. While the lungo is known as a variant of the regular espresso, the brewing process is different and the taste vastly sets it apart.  Another kind of espresso that people usually confuse with the lungo is the ristretto.

Both drinks involve you altering the amount of water used to make the espresso, but the difference here is that the lungo increases the amount of water while the ristretto decreases it. This means that the coffee to water ratio for the drinks is: ristretto is 1:1, for espresso 1:2 while 1:4 is for lungo. 


Latte is a milk-based drink, but people often mix it up with lungo because the names are similar. While a lungo is an espresso-based variant, a latte is made when steamed milk and milk foam is poured into one or two shots of espresso. 

If you want to explore a different coffee profile, you can use the lungo as a base for a latte. Who knows, you may just create a super delicious coffee drink.


The question of the day is whether you should try the lungo or not? If you want a milder drink with light coffee notes, you should give the lungo a try. If you like the Americano style, then the lungo should be your go-to drink. 

But if you are interested in replacing this drink with other espresso drinks, then you can try cappuccinos or lattes. Whatever drink you are making, you'd need fresh coffee beans to make them not stale ones. These coffee beans have chocolatey, nutty, and fruity flavors. So order them from Coffee Hero, we offer FREE SHIPPING and start brewing!

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