Does sweet espresso exist?

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thatbrian

#1: Post by thatbrian »

I've been drinking espresso and espresso-based drinks for decades. Not very often, but I think I have a pretty good test sample, and I've never had a "sweet" espresso.

I've had many bitter and espressos, and a few sour ones, but I've never anything coming even close to sweet.

Q1: Does this thing exist, or is this like Big Foot or Nessie?

Q2: If it does exist, what are the key elements to producing it?

Thanks!

RobAnybody

#2: Post by RobAnybody »

hi,
you might find this thread interesting as it covers your question.
The use of the word "sweet"
most likely you'll find even more answers if you use the site's search function.
cheers!
Rob
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thatbrian (original poster)

#3: Post by thatbrian (original poster) » replying to RobAnybody »

Thanks, Rob.

I understand the use of the term in this context. I eat raw clams, and describe the best ones (IMO) as sweet, so I get it.

However, my question remains, as I've never had a sweet shot of espresso. I've had many I've liked, but none could be called sweet.

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Spitz.me

#4: Post by Spitz.me »

thatbrian wrote:I've been drinking espresso and espresso-based drinks for decades. Not very often, but I think I have a pretty good test sample, and I've never had a "sweet" espresso.

I've had many bitter and espressos, and a few sour ones, but I've never anything coming even close to sweet.

Q1: Does this thing exist, or is this like Big Foot or Nessie?

Q2: If it does exist, what are the key elements to producing it?

Thanks!
Since you think the other thread will give you no legitimate answer.

Q1 - NO
Q2 - N/A

That thread referenced above will give you a real answer to what is meant by using the word "sweet."
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yakster
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#5: Post by yakster »

Q1: Yes.

I taste sweetness in espresso. You may not depending on your palate, but if all you've had is espresso from cafes and not pulled your own shots I'd say you have a good chance of getting a shot that I'd consider to have sweet, juicy flavors.

Q2: Requirements are pretty well covered in this forum for pulling a good shot of espresso.
-Chris

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Dpablo

#6: Post by Dpablo »

There are sugars present in espresso, but I think sweetness in espresso is more likely associated with the notes individuals perceive in their cup. For example, a red apple or cherry note could read as being on the sweet spectrum, whereas tobacco and citrus read as smoky or sour.

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Spitz.me

#7: Post by Spitz.me »

yakster wrote:Q1: Yes.

I taste sweetness in espresso. You may not depending on your palate, but if all you've had is espresso from cafes and not pulled your own shots I'd say you have a good chance of getting a shot that I'd consider to have sweet, juicy flavors.

Q2: Requirements are pretty well covered in this forum for pulling a good shot of espresso.
I'm probably wrong, but I answered the question assuming the OP was asking about a coffee that no one could argue is definitively sweet and isn't coffee where I may taste sweetness if I get the balance just right. I don't think the question was, where can I find coffee where I can taste sweetness. I just see these two ideas as very different. I've tasted a lot of coffee and I'd never tell anyone I've had sweet espresso even though I can taste sweetness in my coffee.
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yakster
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#8: Post by yakster »

I, however, have described espressos I've enjoyed as having a jammy sweetness and a juicy sweetness when that's what I've tasted.

I do have a high tolerance for bitter notes which probably helps. I don't think I taste them as strongly as others. I'm also able to pick up sweet marzipan notes from the Cameroon wrapper of an AJ New World Cameroon cigar.
-Chris

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happycat

#9: Post by happycat »

thatbrian wrote:I've been drinking espresso and espresso-based drinks for decades. Not very often, but I think I have a pretty good test sample, and I've never had a "sweet" espresso.

I've had many bitter and espressos, and a few sour ones, but I've never anything coming even close to sweet.

Q1: Does this thing exist, or is this like Big Foot or Nessie?

Q2: If it does exist, what are the key elements to producing it?

Thanks!
Your sample is probably systematically biased and cannot be depended on as representative of what is possible. e.g. Cafes that do milk drinks may not have any use for sweet espresso. It would disappear in milk.

As yakster said, your overall diet (sugar consumption and tolerance buildup) and immediate diet (what you ate or drank before the espresso) will skew your perceived flavours. That's your diet messing up your ability to detect and enjoy nuance. If you smoke, well... God help your taste buds. I can eat raw veg and enjoy the sweetness.

Q1. Yes. It obviously exists as an experience.

Q2. How to get sweeter
- Grind finer, dose lighter as per Jim Schulman's tips
- Lighter roasts also have less caramelization of the available natural carbs so there's plenty more sweet available.
- correct sourness by using hotter water
- correct bitterness by using cooler water

In the referenced thread I provided an entire flavour chart for a single bean over multiple roasts and amounts of dilution. It's clear how sweetness can be perceived in different kinds of flavours coming out.
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BaristaMcBob

#10: Post by BaristaMcBob »

Yes, absolutely....in the minds of the same marketing people who advertise "lightning-fast sail boats". :D