Café Cubano (Cuban coffee, Cuban espresso, cafecito, Cuban pull, Cuban shot) is a type of espresso which originated in Cuba after espresso machines were first imported there from Italy. Specifically, it refers to an espresso shot which is sweetened with demerara sugar as it is being brewed, but the name covers other drinks that use Cuban espresso as their base.
Drinking café cubano remains a prominent social and cultural activity within Cuba, Miami, West Palm Beach, Tampa and the Keys, as well as the Cuban exile community. Café Cubano is available in almost all coffee shops in Miami, making it a staple of local cuisine and tradition.
Traditional Cuban-style espresso is made by adding demerara or raw cane sugar to the portafilter, ot container used to pour an espresso. Then the espresso will drip, allowing the sugar to infuse or mix with the espresso shot. – compare Vietnamese coffee preparation. Some If this is all done correctly it should result in a rich, smooth and sweet espresso.
A method commonly used to prepare a café cubano is to initially add only the first few drops of espresso to the sugar and mix vigorously. This results in a creamy, light brown paste. The remaining espresso is then added to this paste and mixed, creating a light brown foam layer, or espumita, atop the coffee. A proper cafecito can be made using either an espresso machine or an Italian moka pot, macchinetta.
Another method is to fill your portafilter half way with ground espresso bean, add a packet or tablespoon of sugar in the raw. Lastly fill the filter and tamp it with 30lbs of pressure. Attach the filter to the head and pour the shot.
Cortadito, which in Spanish literally means "small cut", is an espresso topped with steamed milk. It can be between 50/50 to 75/25 espresso and milk. It is similar to a cortado served in other countries, but pre-sweetened.
Café con leche, or "coffee with milk", is a Cuban espresso served alongside a cup of hot or steamed milk. Originally served separately, the cafecito is poured into the glass of hot milk and, then, stirred. It is the traditional Cuban breakfast beverage, served with slices of buttered, toasted cuban bread which can be dunked in the coffee cup. In addition, traditional Cuban "café con leche" contains a pinch of salt (popularized by the Chinese immigrants who arrived in 19th century Cuba) and a dab of butter, giving it a unique taste.
Colada, 4-6 shots of cafecito served in a large cup along with small demitasse glasses. It is meant to be shared.
A common variant is that the drink is sweetened while the espresso is being brewed. In this version, the sugar (most often brown sugar) is packed above the coffee grounds in the espresso machine and allowed to pass with the hot water through the espresso puck while brewing.
See also 
- Vietnamese coffee, similar sweetened coffee
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