Espresso is the base of mochas, macchiato and cappuccino
Enter the Flavorful and Aromatic World of the Espresso
Amongst the various coffee types, espresso is the most sought after because of its intense flavors, textures and aromas.
It is characterized by a thicker consistency and higher concentration of dissolved solids with reddish-brown foam (crema) on top.
Due to these characteristics, you will delightedly discover that espressos form the base of popular drinks like the mochas, macchiato and cappuccino.
The word itself is an Italian word that means “fast” in reference to the quick way with which the coffee grounds are mixed with the pressurized water.
As such, you get the fullest extraction of coffee essence possible than in any other method without actually chewing on the coffee beans.
Now, that would be a really bitter experience in more ways than one. Anyways, modern esspresso as we know it today has its origins in the early part of the twentieth century specifically 1901.
In that year, Luigi Bezzera invented a coffee machine that forced steam and boiling water through ground coffee and then into a cup.
In 1903, an enterprising Italian by the name of Desiderio Pavoni bought the patent from Bezzera.
This machine was the “La Pavona” popular in the United States by the 1900s although it was only in 1961 when the first pump-driven machine was developed by M. Faena.
You have many choices when it comes to the available blends in the expresso universe.
Basically, you can choose from the dry-processed or the wet-processed blends.
Keep in mind that each blend will yield a different kind of coffee so choosing one is always up to the drinker’s preferences.
On one hand, the dry-processed blends contain beans from Yemen, Brazil, Indonesia and Ethiopia.
You will find that these blends are more heavy-bodied with lesser acidity but definitely sweeter.
On the other hand, the wet-processed blends produce less sweet but more acidic coffees.
Often, these two blends are also mixed to create subtle flavors that each one may not have without the other.
For example, an expresso may contain dry-processed beans used for their subtle flavors with a small portion made of wet-processed beans to enhance the flavors brought by the latter’s floral and fruity tastes.
Also, blends can either be single origins or multiple origins. Or it can be made from Robusta coffee beans and Arabica coffee beans.
It all depends on the baristas’ preference as well as the drinker’s desires. And the fact that different roasters employ different roasting strategies can complicate the choosing of the perfect italian coffee for your tastes.
So, if you find one that suits you, enjoy it while you can before exposing your palate to other blends.
Roasting the Italian Coffee Beans
Speaking of roasting, you must keep in mind that the primary objective of roasting espressi is to minimize the acidity and bitterness while maximizing aroma and sweetness.
There are many tips in this aspect but the most important is to end the roast somewhere between the first crack’s end and the less than halfway into the second crack.
Indeed, the world of espresso is an aromatic and flavorful universe.
The trick is in choosing the best blend, the best roaster and the best presentation for your coffee needs.