If you read my matcha article, you would know that I'm a coffee lover. Actually scratch that, I'm a coffee addict. As an experiment, I gave up coffee for a week to jump on the matcha bandwagon. And, might I add, that was the last time I'll ever (willingly) give up coffee. While black drip coffee is usually my go-to, I'm no stranger to Americanos.

So, what's the difference?

coffee, milk, cappuccino, espresso, cream, mocha, chocolate
Katie Chang

While drip coffee and an Americano may look the same, the difference between the two is in the preparation and base ingredient. Your standard drip coffee is brewed by letting hot water drip through the ground, but it can also be brewed through French press immersion or by simply adding grains directly to a boiling pot of water. Its base is roasted seeds or beans of the coffee plant. 

An Americano is made by adding hot water to espresso until it's roughly the same strength as regular coffee. The small espresso shot transforms into a larger cup of coffee, similar to drip coffee. However, regular coffee is typically brewed for a longer time at a lower temperature using more water and a coarser grinder.

Can you taste the difference? 

coffee, cappuccino, milk, espresso, mocha, cream
Zaina Gowani

Well, it depends. The disparities in water temperature, brew time, and grind setting will result in differing flavors, with an Americano usually tasting a bit fuller and richer (thanks to the espresso). Yet, the taste is also dependent on the roast level and of course, your taste buds. 

Which has more caffeine?

beer, coffee, tea
Katie Chang

Drip coffees generally have a higher caffeine content than Americanos, although not by much. According to the Mayo Clinic, drip coffee has between 95 and 200 milligrams of caffeine, while an Americano (with two shots of espresso) has about 94 to 150 milligrams of caffeine. 

If you're a Starbucks lover in need of that extra boost before your 8 am, I would opt for a classic cup of drip coffee. In an 8-oz cup at Starbucks, drip coffee has 110 more milligrams of caffeine than an Americano.

coffee, cappuccino, milk, espresso
Suzie Waltzer

But if you're looking for something a bit more sophisticated than your average cup o' joe, try an Americano. After all, anyone can order a plain cup of coffee.