What is a Flat White?

The Flat White has to be one of the most debated coffee drinks in the industry. Coffee 101 is here to save the day and set matters straight! What is a Flat White?

The Coffee beverage known as a flat white is a drink consisting of a DOUBLE shot of espresso with hot milk and a thin layer of microfoam, for decorative latte art purposes.

It is comparable to a latte but with less micro-foam thus having a higher proportion of coffee to milk. Milk that is added to coffee gives the drink its velvety texture inconsistency. This allows the espresso flavour to come through while still being supported by the milk.

What is a Flat White?

Milk What is a Flat White?

For a well-made Flat White, use fresh whole milk (fat content 3.3 -4%, protein 3.2-3.3% stored at 5 degrees centigrade or lower). The milk should be heated carefully without overheating it or injecting excess air. The beverage itself does not contain a lot of microfoam. A thin layer of micro-foam is present near the surface of the beverage.  Dry steam from the espresso machine wand is used to make thick, full-bodied froth. Flat Whites can be served using a variety of milk, namely: Almond milk, Oat milk, Skim milk, Low-fat milk and Soya milk.

What is a Flat White?

Temperature What is a Flat White?

The temperature of the double Espresso coffee in the Flat White cup should be approximately 75 degrees centigrade. This will maintain the crema on the surface and protect the aromatic components of the beverage. Flat Whites are prepared with the milk at the proper temperature (65-70 degrees centigrade) and a thin layer of froth with a smooth texture, is enjoyable, slightly sweet and has a velvety mouthfeel that enhances the quality of the beverage.

Emulsion

Emulsion occurs in two stages: during the first stage, the milk is “whipped” or “stretched’, to incorporate bubbles of air. The next stage is when the real emulsion occurs, which involves submerging the steam wand into the milk and holding it near the outer edge of the steaming pitcher and creating a whirlpool effect that reduces the size of the bubbles. As this occurs the milk froth acquires it’s catacaustic velvety texture and translucent appearance.

Origin

The earliest reference to the Flat White beverage dates to the mid-1980s in Sydney, Australia. The beverage got added to some of the coffee bars. The issue came during a seasonal problem with the milk from the cows that prevented the milk froth from forming, thus the invention of the beverage. There are many claims where the beverage began. New Zealanders also claim to have invented the beverage.

What is a Flat White?

Health Benefits.

The Flat White is a drink that is made from hot milk, espresso coffee and a thin layer of steamed milk foam. The microfoam forms a thick layer near the top of the drink. It is served in cups that vary from 180ml to 2200ml, having a handle. Because of the milk, the beverage has a rich texture and flavour. This drink can bring out the taste of the coffee “roast”. This beverage needs a skilled barista to prepare as the drink can be spoiled by either a bitter espresso shot, burnt milk or getting the ratio of milk – espresso –milk foam wrong. This drink is widespread throughout South Africa and would be the most famous coffee beverage in the southern hemisphere.

Nutritional Value.

The serving size of 28 grams (200ml) of Flat White contains about 6 calories, 1.2 grams of carbs, 0 grams of total fat and 4.5 grams of sugar per spoon (if you add extra sugar to the beverage), 0 mg of iron and 0mg of sodium.

The coffee in the Flat White beverage adds several health benefits namely...

  1. Prevent heart ailments
  2. Lowers stroke
  3. Prevent type 2 diabetes
  4. Prevents Alzheimer’s
  5. Reduce gallstones
  6. Assist digestion
  7. Lowers cancer
  8. Burn fat
  9. Teeth health
  10. Prevent headache

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1 Response

  1. Deshan Thaver says:

    What would you say is the best milk to use for a flat white? Good article really enjoying this site

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