A Whole Latte Expectations...

Mar 29, 2022

Ah the Cappuccino! A base of beautiful espresso, followed by smooth silky milk, and topped with a no-fuss dusting of cocoa powder. Wouldn’t it be nice if everyone ordered cappuccinos? 

Unfortunately, a large percentage of the population prefer lattes. Not only do they prefer lattes, but they expect, at minimum, a perfectly symmetrical heart or rosetta to be sitting on top of their latte. More importantly, however, many employers expect this as well. 

This is a dilemma we see a lot for new baristas, many of whom do not have previous art experience. On the one hand, they need latte art skills to be hired, but on the other hand, they need practice to develop latte art skills. Thankfully, there are employers out there who are willing to hire baristas without this skill, encouraging them to develop latte art abilities on the job. Learning on the job is a challenge, time is often short and pressure can be high.

Here’s a few tips and tricks to help you make the most of what time you do have to practice your latte art: 

Firstly: make the most out of every opportunity you have to practice. 

This means practicing on takeaway orders, and, in situations where your co-workers are having a coffee, asking if you can practice on them! 

Second: start small.

 Learn a heart first and repeat it until you can do it well every time, then move on to something more complicated. Give yourself time to develop the hand-eye coordination required to make good latte art and be gentle with yourself as you go through this process, it does take time. 

Third: know the standard of quality latte art.

 Good latte art should be centered, the handle of the cup to the right of the art. It should also be symmetrical if it is a symmetrical shape (such as a heart or rosetta). Your milk should be smooth and silky with a sheen, and there shouldn’t be any noticeable bubbles. The contrast of your latte art should be sharp, without bleeding lines or discolouration in the brown (espresso) parts of the art. 

Good latte art is also recognisable, it’s better to serve a perfect heart than to serve an indistinguishable sunset. Once you’ve mastered simple shapes with the above parameters, then move on to trying more complicated latte art

A Whole Latte Expectations...