Seeing as more and more folks are discovering the joys of owning a home espresso machine, I figured it was high time for a guide to the best latte cups. After all, I know that many of you are getting more serious about espresso preparation and milk drinks. And I'm sure that means you've been flirting with latte art too!
Seeing as more and more folks are discovering the joys of owning a home espresso machine, I figured it was high time for a guide to the best latte cups. After all, I know that many of you are getting more serious about espresso preparation and milk drinks. And I’m sure that means you’ve been flirting with latte art too!
Whether you’re looking for a latte cup that’ll help with your coffee art designs or just something straightforward for everyday use, you’re bound to find it on my list. I’ll also give you a few tips and pointers to help you choose the best latte cup for your needs.
Best Latte Cups at a Glance
Here’s a quick look at the latte cups I’ll be reviewing today.
Latte vs Cappuccino: What’s the Difference?
These days it’s harder than ever to differentiate between a latte and a cappuccino. I mean, depending on where you get your daily fix, a cappuccino at your local coffee shop might be a 5-ounce (148-milliliter) “traditional” version or a 20-ounce (590-milliliter) monster with whipped cream and sprinkles. And that’s before we even consider the trendy flat white and cortado.
Listen, I don’t want to stir up controversy here, so all I can do is give you my opinion on the difference between a cappuccino and a latte.
In my mind, a cappuccino should be on the smaller side. I’m thinking anywhere between 5 and 8 ounces (148 and 237 milliliters). What’s more, it should comprise one or two shots of espresso, lightly frothed milk and a good dollop of fluffy milk foam to top things off. Ideally, a cappuccino should be white on top with a ring of dark coffee around the edge.
Alternatively, a latte should clock in at anywhere from 6 to 12 ounces (177 to 355 milliliters). Plus, the steamed milk for a latte should be more silky and homogenous. Rather than a layer of hot milk followed by a dollop of foam, a latte should comprise one or two shots of espresso and milk that’s been “free-poured.” By using this pouring method, a skilled barista can manipulate the perfect microfoam they’ve created to produce pretty patterns on top of the drink.
Choosing the Best Latte Cups: What to Consider
You may be wondering whether a latte really needs a specialized cup. After all, isn’t it more about the quality of the espresso and milk froth than the vessel being used?
Well, to a certain extent, yes. However, for those who want to take their latte art game to the next level, the cup they use is actually very important.
With that in mind, let’s take a look at what to consider as you’re shopping for latte art cups.
Earlier I mentioned what I consider to be the acceptable size range for a latte. Still, I’d say that anywhere from 8 to 10 ounces (237 to 296 milliliters) gets you in the Goldilocks zone. Within this range you’ll have the best ratio of espresso to steamed milk, allowing you to create beautiful latte art.
If your cup is much bigger, you run the risk of flooding your espresso with too much milk, throwing off the final taste and reducing your chances of achieving a successful swan or rosetta pattern.
All of the very best latte cups have a rounded and gently curved interior. This is super important if you want to pour latte art, seeing as you’ll be able to pour steamed milk gently and gradually. Sure, you can still make pretty patterns using a cup with straight sides, it’s just way more difficult.
Another consideration is the opening at the top of your cup. Essentially, you’re looking for a wide opening which will give you the maximum amount of surface area. Trust me, if you’re just starting out experimenting with latte art, a large surface area is key to success.
It almost goes without saying that your latte cup should retain heat as efficiently as possible. That’s especially important if you’ll be spending extra time pouring complicated latte art.
So, look for latte cups made from thick porcelain, ceramic or double walled borosilicate glass. These will keep your espresso shots nice and toasty as you’re pouring and retain heat while you’re enjoying your latest creation!
The 5 Best Latte Cups
Kruve Imagine Milk Drink Glass
Made from hand blown borosilicate glass, this double walled latte cup features a unique spherical design. The interior has been specially optimized for pouring latte art, which experienced baristas will appreciate.
Plus, everyone will appreciate how sleek and beautiful this latte cup is. I especially love the fact that your latte appears to be floating in a bowl within the outer glass.
While the Kruve Imagine isn’t the most durable latte cup on my list, it’s certainly not fragile. Still, I’d keep it away from the dishwasher. Especially given you’ll be paying $39.99 for a set of two 10-ounce (296-milliliter) glasses.
Coffeezone Latte Art Cup
Available in a range of bright colors, as well as black, white and brown, the 10-ounce Coffeezone Latte Art Cup is solid and effective.
I guess you could say it looks a bit boring and traditional when compared with some of the other latte cups on my list. Still, sometimes you just want a straightforward coffee cup!
Anyway, this Coffeezone cup is an excellent choice for those who want to show off their latte art skills. That’s because the cup offers a large surface area and gentle curves as you’re pouring.
What’s more, the thick porcelain design is both satisfying and practical. In essence, this cup retains heat like a boss.
Finally, the Coffeezone Latte Art Cup represents pretty good value at just $17.80. That’s certainly a lot less than you’ll pay for the fancy pants latte cups!
Fellow Monty Milk Art Cup
Costing $27.50, the 11-ounce (325-milliliter) Fellow Monty Milk Art Cup is quite the investment. However, if you want a high-quality latte cup that’s both beautiful and functional, the Monty could be just the ticket.
As with all of the manufacturer’s products, the Fellow Monty Milk Art Cup looks superb.
Thanks to its sleek, double walled ceramic construction the Monty will keep your coffee drink nice and warm while protecting your fingers from getting burned. Plus, the curved interior is ideal for creating latte art, seeing as your espresso’s crema is lifted to the top as you’re pouring.
Available in both black and white, the Fellow Monty also comes in a few different sizes. Personally, I think the taller cup is more suitable for a latte, although the 6.5-ounce (192-milliliter) Cappuccino Mug has a wider opening, which some might prefer.
notNeutral LINO Latte Cup
If you want to take your home espresso setup to the next level, consider getting hold of the notNeutral LINO Latte Cup.
This super stylish porcelain latte cup has been specially designed in collaboration with award-winning baristas, and you’ll often find it being used in high-end cafes.
Sure, the notNeutral LINO Latte Cup isn’t cheap – you’ll have to shell out a whopping $26.95. However, when you consider the care and attention that’s gone into the design of the thing, the price makes sense.
For starters, the interior curvature has been optimized for pouring latte art as well as maintaining thermal insulation. What’s more, the elegant handle makes the LINO a joy to hold both while pouring and drinking.
Available in a few different low-key shades, the notNeutral LINO has a 12-ounce (355-milliliter) capacity, making it one of the larger latte cups on my list.
Acme Evo Latte Cup
With a capacity of just 9.5 ounces (280 milliliters), the Acme Evo Latte Cup is the smallest on my list. Still, it has everything you need from a latte cup, including a large surface area and thick porcelain construction.
In fact, like some of the other cups on my list, the Acme Evo was designed in collaboration with coffee professionals.
There’s just something about the design of the Acme Evo that really does it for me. Aside from its simple, aesthetically pleasing shape, this latte cup boasts a timeless vibe that sets it apart. Oh, and you can get this latte cup in a variety of cool colors, including green, light blue and dark blue.
As far as I can tell, the Acme Evo Latte Cup is only available as a set of six, costing $69.00. Oh, and if you want saucers you’ll have to buy ’em separately.
As we’ve seen, there’s a wide range of latte cups to choose from, and you don’t have to spend the earth. Then again, I know how easy it is to drop a lot of cash on beautiful boutique cups and glasses!
At the end of the day, only you can decide which is the perfect latte cup for your needs. I’d recommend going with something in your price range that you find beautiful. After all, your morning latte is supposed to brighten your day, so why not maximize the joy?
That’s it for my guide to the best latte cups. Do you have a favorite cup for your morning cappuccino or latte? Tell me all about it in the comments section!
Latte Cups FAQ
Perfect latte art cups should have a rounded interior, gently sloping sides and a wide opening at the top.
Ideally a latte mug should clock in at anywhere from 6 to 12 ounces (177 to 355 milliliters).
Expert baristas can make latte art in just about any cup. However, it’s much more difficult to create patterns in a standard coffee mug.