Originally created in Australia or New Zealand (depending on who you talk to), Flat White became “a thing” in North America only about 5 years ago when Starbucks added them to their menu. This may be why (unless you are from Australia, like me, or New Zealand) you only heard about them recently, and are probably wondering what the difference is between a Latte, a Cappuccino and a Flat White.
As I mentioned in an earlier post, my biased description of their differences is as follows: A Cappuccino has stiff foam and is like drinking bubbles with coffee at the bottom. Latte has a little foam on the top and lots of milk, and it tastes like milky coffee. A Flat White has an even mix of liquid milk and smooth velvet foam so it is like drinking an espresso, but more delicious.
Getting the perfect balance to achieve a fabulous Flat White isn’t easy, which is why it’s a good measure of a great barista, and why you won’t find them on every cafe menu. However, on my quest to find a Flat White in St Catharines and the Niagara Region, I have found 3 favourites so far:
Craft Arts Market, downtown St Catharines
Craft Arts Market is a stylishly curated home, gift, lifestyle and art retail store in downtown St Catharines. It’s also home to the Craft Espresso Bar, which serves Pilot Coffee from Toronto. This is my numero uno because of its downtown location, smooth crema and nicely roasted beans.
The Black Sheep Lounge, Welland
Not only do they make a decent flat white at the Black Sheep in Welland, but they roast their own coffee beans right in the cafe. So, no matter how you like your coffee served, it’s super fresh.
Read more about The Black Sheep Lounge
Balzac Coffee, Niagara-on-the-Lake
Balzac Coffee Roasters have a number of locations, however, in my opinion the NOTL location has the best baristas. I have had a different person serve me every time I visit and they always bring their A-game on the espresso machine.