Difference between Latte and Mocha

There are plenty of Italian-sounding names for coffee drinks in the café menu. To enjoy the drink fully, it is good to know what you are being served with. In this article, we will examine differences between Latte and Mocha.


Latte vs Mocha
A cup of café latte with an intricate art finish

If you order “a cup of latte” in an Italian restaurant, you will be served with plain milk because Italian “latte” translates to English as ‘milk”. In the United States, latte is a coffee drink, and sometimes referred to as “wet cappuccino” because it has everything cappuccino has, except the foam.

A recipe for a good café Latte:

Ingredients and items: 10 to 16 oz. of steaming milk; Stainless steel steaming pitcher; Thermometer; Espresso machine with a steaming wand; ¼ to ½ oz. of freshly ground espresso; Temper; Spoon; Mug or latte bowl.


  1. Clean the steam wand thoroughly before you use it, because warm milk can breed bacteria. Pour milk into the pitcher so it is one half full and submerge the thermometer. Place the steam wand into the milk, so the end of the wand is just below the surface.
  2. Turn on the steam and watch the milk increasing in volume as it heats. Turn off the steam as soon as the thermometer reaches 140 degrees Fahrenheit. Be sure to hold the pitcher by the handle and never touch the steam wand, it is hot. You can also heat the milk in a saucepan, and use a milk frother to aerate the milk.
  3. Remove the filter apparatus from the espresso machine. Pour espresso into the filter.
  4. Pack the grounds firmly into the tamper to keep the water from rushing through too quickly. Many espresso filters have a special line indicating the threshold to which the espresso should be tamped.
  5. Replace and lock the filter and place the mug or latte bowl below the spout. Press the button to start the water. It takes normally around twenty five seconds to pull a shot of espresso. A good espresso shot has a light-colored top layer called the crema.
  6. If you like, you can flavor your latte by adding half an ounce of syrup to the espresso. Pour into the steamed milk to fill the mug using the spoon to hold back the foam. Add sugar or sweetener to your taste.
A glass of café mocha
A glass of café mocha

Café mocha can refer to any coffee drink that uses espresso, milk and chocolate. Traditionally used in Italy only as a variation of café latte, café mocha, or mocaccino, has become a popular, “sweet” milky espresso type, which a barista can make to his own standards.

Directions to make a cup of café mocha:

  1. Put some cocoa in the cup. Cocoa preferably shouldn’t be too sweet, so the cocoa flavor will make a good mix with the espresso. Add a little bit of hot water in the cup and stir the mixture up to make chocolate syrup.
  2. Pour the shot of espresso into the chocolate mix and stir it up.
  3. Pour milk on top of the espresso-chocolate mix while slightly moving the cup in a circular way. Thanks to a density of the drink, you can create a nice art finish with milk, similar to cappuccino finish.

Comparison chart

Latte Mocha
Doesn’t contain chocolate Contains chocolate
Is less sweet Is sweeter
Is made with a foam finish Is made with a milk finish

Latte vs Mocha

What is the difference between Latte and Mocha?

  • While café latte doesn’t contain chocolate, café mocha does.
  • Cafe latte is not sweet. The standards of latte suggest that a cup of latte should be rather flavored than sweet. Coffee mocha, on the other hand, is sweet. The sweetness of mocha is one of its prerequisites.
  • A cup of café latte is usually made with a nice foam finish. The finish can be arty and it is up to your artistic taste to create whatever finish you like for your latte. On the other hand, a finish on top of café mocha is made while actually adding milk into the cup.