Food Guide

Why is Coffee Called Americano? Uncover the Fascinating Origins of this Popular Beverage

You order a shot of espresso and pull up a seat at the coffee bar.

“Why is coffee called americano?” you ask your friend.

“Well, there’s a story behind it,” they say, taking a sip of their own drink.

“It’s actually a pretty interesting one.


Intrigued, you wait for them to continue.

“It all started during World War II,” they say.

“The American soldiers were stationed in Italy, and they wanted to make their coffee.

It’s named after America Water

It’s named after America Water.

The americano is a type of coffee drink made by pulling a shot of espresso and then adding about 6 ounces of hot water.

The strength should be similar to drip filter coffee.

Caffe americano is the Italian way of serving espresso “American style”, ordering a shot of espresso “with water”.

Add milk and/or sugar if desired.

The name “americano” is also sometimes used in other languages, to refer to a shot of espresso with added water.

It’s a shot of espresso diluted in water

If you ask a coffee expert why is americano called that way, you will get a very confused look.

Because, although the name seems to suggest that it has something to do with America, it doesn’t.

It’s not even a coffee drink that was invented in America! So then, what is americano? Let’s take a look.

Where did americano come from?.

Americano is an Italian word (Apparently, the earliest record of the term was in Italy in the 1900s) for a shot of espresso that is diluted with water.

Now, you might think that this is a very odd word to use, especially when you take into consideration that adding water to espresso is something that is done all over the world.

You’d be right to think that, of course.

Because that’s exactly what is done in America (and in the rest of the western world) when a person is ordering a shot of espresso.

But wait, there’s more.

It was created during WWII

The Americano was created during World War II, when American soldiers were stationed in Italy.

The soldiers found that they enjoyed the Italian way of making coffee, which was different from the way they made it back home.

They asked for their coffee to be made “American style,” which meant that it was made stronger and with more milk and sugar than the Italian version.

Over time, the name Americano became associated with this style of coffee.

It became popular in the 1950’s

The origin of the name “Americano” is not entirely clear, but there are several theories about how it came to be.

Some believe that the name was inspired by the American soldiers who were stationed in Italy during the Second World War.

These soldiers were known for their love of strong, black coffee, and they would often order “American-style” coffee in Italian cafes.

Over time, the name “Americano” came to be associated with this type of coffee.

Another theory suggests that the name was coined by an Italian businessman who wanted to market his coffee to the American market.

He believed that calling his coffee “Americano” would make it sound more appealing to American consumers.

Regardless of its origin, the term “Americano” has become a popular way to refer to any type of black coffee that is served hot and strong, particularly in Italy.

It’s the Italian way of making coffee

If you order an americano in Italy, bartenders will look at you like you’re crazy.

The beverage is not an “American” anything; the name comes from the Italian word “amerire,” which means “to make bitter.

” And if you ask for it that way, you’ll get a shot of espresso and a glass of water.

“American coffee” is the Italian way of making coffee.

It’s what cafe-goers ordered in the 1950s and ’60s when they wanted a shot of caffeine, not a full cup of coffee.

It’s also a way to order coffee when you don’t want the added fat and sugar of a cappuccino or espresso macchiato (espresso “marked” with a shot of foamy milk).

So, why would anyone want to order a glass of water along with their coffee? reservoirs are located near the cities, not in the mountains where most of the coffee-growing countries are.

The water used in brewing is not as good, so the coffee is usually more bitter.

To cut the bitterness, many prefer to sip their coffee alongside a glass of water.

Final Thoughts

The name “Americano” is derived from “America Water,” which is a shot of espresso diluted in water.

The drink was created during WWII and quickly became popular in Italy.

It’s also the drink that misunderstandings brewed (pun intended) between an American Barista and an Italian gentleman, which later led to the shot being named after the Americans.

Whether you prefer your espresso in a shot or diluted, we hope you enjoy it.

Emily W.

Emily Wong is an Asian-American food writer the founder of With nearly 8 years of experience, she has a passion for making cooking accessible to everyone and sharing her personal experiences with food. Emily's vision for is to create a community of food lovers who are passionate about cooking, eating, and sharing their experiences with others. Read my story
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