Café au lait is a French coffee drink that combines hot coffee with hot milk. The term translates directly to “coffee with milk.” It is similar to the Italian caffè latte and the Spanish café con leche, all of which are part of a European tradition of combining coffee with milk.

Café au lait is typically made with equal parts brewed coffee and steamed milk, resulting in a creamy and less intense coffee flavor compared to a straight espresso. The coffee used can vary, but it is often a strong drip or French press coffee rather than espresso. This drink is popular for breakfast and is often served in a large cup or bowl to allow for dipping pastries, like croissants.

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