“Latte Art Machine” by Pikalo

  • ©Oleksiy Pikalo


Entry Number: 22


    Latte Art Machine



    Latte art refers to graphic designs on the surface of espresso based drinks. By manipulating the flow of milk from a jug into the espresso, barista may form several different patterns, including rosettas, leaves and hearts [Schomer 1994]. It is also possible to further enhance the pattern using stencils, powder and milk foam [Wikipedia 2008].

    Unsatisfied with the limited choice of patterns, we have decided to investigate alternative means of reproducing designs on the surface of variety espresso-based drinks. After experimenting with different automated etching and pouring techniques with some success, we have built a prototype that uses a modified inkjet print cartridge to infuse tiny droplets of colorant into the upper layer of the beverage. As it turns out, the micro-bubbled texture of the beverage provides sufficient isolation and stability for small droplets deposited using traditional inkjet technologies. The resulting images are sustainable for periods over half an hour.

Other Information:


    SCHOMER, D. 1994. Latte art 101. CoffeeTalk (Dec.), 13.

    WIKIPEDIA, 2008. Latte art — Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. [Online; accessed 27-February-2008].


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