Discuss flavors, brew temperatures, blending, and cupping notes.
- Supporter ♡
TomC wrote:But it's my perspective towards many very basic Italian blends that are hard to mess up.
You'll have to admit to some seriousness insofar as there is a standard in Italy for the preparation of an espresso. The implication for me is that roasting is oriented to a common preparation practice, so there's pretty clear guidance about what the roaster intended.
That's maybe not so interesting with the clown coffees subsidized at 1€, but with the Caffès that have now assimilated the US 3rd wave, one is getting some outstanding cups of coffee.
I really enjoy that Roma, unfortunately I am running through my last ~ 100 g. I wish they offered it again I would buy some more this time and froze.
TomC (original poster)
- Team HB
Today was our first time in any large public setting since the pandemic, we went down to the Ferry Building, which always necessitates a stop into the Heath Ceramics store inside. They have a new line of blue glazed summer wares, and the small little bowls looked perfectly suited for affogato.
The complex bitters and distillates in the Roma plays well against the sweet ice cream. I never tried Costco's vanilla ice cream but it's impressive.
This week, I've been into my second bag. It is 3 weeks rested and the taste, presumably of the robusta, has changed noticeably for the better. Depending on how I extract it I have managed to get woody (cedar), vague spice or a hint of that banana someone else mentioned. An interesting experience, but not really what I am looking for.
TomC (original poster)
- Team HB
Tiramisu is on the menu today for my wife's birthday. I don't like spending 40 minutes pulling shot after shot after shot of espresso to get the appropriate volume needed for a recipe that feeds 8. So I generally bust out the biggest french press and make very strong coffee that way. I'll use up the remaining coffee from the first bag I bought from Caffe Lusso. We have a local distillery in Pacifica that makes a wonderful rum, so I will incorporate that local element.
Looking forward to it, but I really should have made this last night so it had more time to set up in the fridge!
I just finished my last bag and so I wanted to summarize my thoughts:
1. It definitely likes high heat, high preinfusion pressure, and ristretto pulls. I think it worked well in milk drinks but required larger doses to punch through the milk (18g+). I personally prefer 14g doses.
2. Taste wise, by pulling ristrettos, it highlighted the chocolate and caramel notes. There still was an off note in there (banana peel?), and I thought it tastes a bit flat and uninteresting in straight shots. I'm used to true Italian blends being more intricate but again, in milk I enjoyed it.
3. There was certainly a heightened caffeine kick for me, and this is coming from a guy who routinely drinks Italian blends that contain 60/40 arabica to robusta. It was a different sensation than usual. I'd liken it to the drunk you get off of beer vs. wine vs. liquor. Alcohol content may be the same, but the way it makes you feel is different.
4. I bought this expecting it to be close to Italian blends that I've enjoyed. And I like a bunch of them from all over Italy, including the north, south, and central. This Roma blend was unlike any of those, roasted much more lightly. I have zero experience roasting, but I feel like we could've gotten more from the bean if it was allowed to develop a bit more. Again, take that with a grain of salt.
5. The biggest jump in quality I got was by letting this age. 2 weeks is the minimum, but the more the better IMO.
So, overall, I enjoyed trying this blend and I give Caffe Lusso a lot of credit for trying different things and allowing us to try it. I personally didn't care for it that much in straight shots and I probably wouldn't buy it again, but I had fun trying it. If I was more of a milk drinker and liked playing with higher doses, I can see this blend working well for that crowd. Thanks!