Why Espresso is Served with Sparkling Water

If you’re a coffee lover, you know that espresso is a fantastic alternative to your regular cup of coffee. Espresso is a type of coffee that is brewed by forcing hot water through finely-ground coffee beans. It is a popular coffee beverage enjoyed by many people worldwide, and it’s typically served with a glass of sparkling water. 

You may wonder why espresso is served with sparkling water, and that’s precisely what we will explore in this blog.

4 Reasons Espresso is Served with Sparkling Water

Why Espresso is Served with Sparkling Water

1. Coffee Palate Cleanser

One of the reasons why espresso is served with sparkling water is to cleanse the palate. Espresso has a strong and rich taste that can linger in the mouth after drinking. 

The sparkling water’s role is to rinse any residual flavors from the espresso and cleanse the palate. This way, you fully enjoy the next espresso sip; everything tastes fresh and vibrant.

2. Coffee Tasting Experience

Another reason espresso is served with sparkling water is to enhance the coffee-tasting experience. Drinking espresso is not just about satisfying your caffeine cravings. It’s an experience that involves multiple senses. 

By serving sparkling water alongside espresso, baristas aim to offer a multi-sensory experience that enhances the flavor of the coffee. It’s like fine dining, where you have various courses, and each dish complements the next while offering a unique experience.

3. Aesthetics

Espresso and sparkling water are served in smaller quantities, and placing them on a serving tray can make a visually appealing contrast. 

The clear water and dark espresso in tiny glasses can be aesthetically pleasing to the eyes and look stunning in social media pictures.

4. Hydration

The last reason why espresso is served with sparkling water is hydration. Coffee is a diuretic (makes us excrete urine), and serving it with water helps you stay hydrated. This may not be necessary when you’re just having one serving, but drinking water becomes essential when enjoying multiple espresso servings.

Why is Seltzer Water Served with Espresso?

If you’ve ever ordered an espresso at an Italian café, you would have been served a glass of sparkling water with your drink. This tradition dates back to the early 20th century when espresso machines became popular.

As coffee connoisseurs, Italians served the perfect espresso shot by rinsing the customer’s mouth with water beforehand. This allowed the coffee to have a clean and fresh taste and helped balance the coffee’s acidity with the neutral pH of water.

How to Drink Espresso with Sparkling Water

Now that we know why seltzer water is served with espresso, let’s discuss how to drink them together. The key is to treat the seltzer water as a palate cleanser. 

Sip some water before taking a sip of your espresso to rinse your mouth and prepare your taste buds. After sipping the espresso, follow up with another sip of water to cleanse your palate again.

The Sparkling Water Espresso Recipe

If you’re feeling adventurous, you can drink a sparkling water espresso at home! Here’s how;

  1. Start by brewing a shot of espresso, as you normally would.
  2. Fill a glass with ice and pour the espresso shot over it.
  3. Top the glass up with cold sparkling water.
  4. You can add sugar syrup or cream if you like.
  5. Stir it and enjoy!

Benefits of Drinking Seltzer Water with Espresso

Drinking seltzer water alongside espresso helps alleviate the burnt or bitter taste many associate with espresso. 

The bubbles in sparkling water can help cleanse your palate, making the coffee taste smoother and less intense. 

Additionally, the water can hydrate you and help wash away any acid in your mouth after drinking the espresso.


Espresso is served with sparkling water to cleanse the palate and enhance the coffee-tasting experience, aesthetics, and hydration. If you’re new to espresso, try it with sparkling water to enjoy the full experience. 

If you’re a seasoned coffee lover, you now know why sparkling water is served with espresso, and you can savor the beverage the next time you order.

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