The difference between cafe latte and cafe au lait is the fact that the former beverage is Italian in origin and the latter is French. Also, typically the French Cafe au Lait is actually made with strong brewed coffee and not espresso.

Basic Cafe Latte : Make a single shot of espresso. Add steamed milk to fill an 8 to 10 oz. latte mug (preferably clear). Lattes are frequently flavoured with Italian syrups. Nut flavours such as hazelnut and almond are among the most popular additions.

Cafe Latte au Lait (French) : To make a French cafe au lait, brew strong, dark roast coffee using the drip method. Serve with a separate pitcher of heated (not frothed) milk. In France, cafe au lait is often served in a bowl instead of a cup. This open-mouthed vessel is convenient for dunking brioche and croissants. It is also useful for warming one's hands while seated outdoors. Traditionally, cafe au lait is consumed at breakfast. The coffee and steamed milk are mixed by the customer to change strength and proportioned as desired.

Cafe Con Leche : Similar to cafe au lait, but a Spanish beverage. Dark roast coffee is brewed by drip method then mixed with sugar and served with heated milk. It is customary to serve cafe con leche with warm, buttered bread.

Cafe au Lait