I also have a whole bean espresso question for use in my new Gaggia Accademia. I like a stronger, richer coffee. I've been drinking "caffe's" from the Accademia...so 5-6 ounce pulls of the strongest (three bean) setting set two notches finer than the most course grind setting. I don't like a "winey" or "tangy" taste, as I've experienced from the Klatch "worlds best espresso" or "Belle" I like the Vivace beans better but still get some of that same taste from both the "Vita" and the "Dolce". I just tried the Lavazza "Super Crema" and find it to be similar to the "Dolce"...maybe not quite as rich and complex though. A little underwhelming. I've used Peet's "Espresso Forte" and thought it was pretty good but too oily, I think, for long term use in the Accademia. I am now wating for some Filicori Zecchini "Gran Crema Delicato" and "Gran Crema Forte" to arrive in the mail so that I can give them a try. I'm wondering if you might have any other recommendations based on my desire for a rich, stronger cafe from the Accademia...but without being either tangy/winey or too bitter. Should I stick with 100% aabica beans? I've heard good reviews about Lavazza "Qualita Oro" and "Qualita Rossa" as well as Intelligentsia "Black Cat" and Illy medium roast espresso beans. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks
As you have found out, Louis, everyone's taste is going to vary. You mentioned some great beans (in my opinion) and also some very expensive beans (Vivace). In our compare-o-matic, if you compare coffee the same way you would compare machines side by side, it will give you a better idea of the characters of the beans. I have set up a comparison of some of my favorite beans, as I think you and I have pretty similar taste.
Let me know what you think! Of all of those, Taormina is my current go to for milk drinks, Caffes, Americanos, or just straight Espresso. I hear it going around more and more in the sales office, so I think other people are starting to get won over by this bean! 11-01-13 05:11PM
Thanks for all your advice Chris. Being that I'm in Seattle, I've dropped by the Cafe D'arte retail store here a few times and have tried the Taormina, Capri, Parioli, and Firenze...as well as the Filicori Zecchini Delicato and Forte. I've also tried LaVazza Super Crema and Klatch Belle and Worlds Best Espresso. I didn't care for either Klatch bean at all. Very winey and not very rich to me. Super Crema I also did not like...not very rich, winey, aftertaste that I didn't care for. Delicato was nice but not rich enough and had a slightly winey and bitter aftertaste to me. The Gran Crema Espresso Forte I like. It is my second favorite at this point. Not winey, not too bitter of an aftertaste, nice complex taste in my mouth. Taormina is really nice. I felt it was a little too dark for me. Interestingly, not really bitter though... Parioli was too tangy for me, and Firenze a little too winey. I feel, at this point, that the Cafe D'arte Capri is my favorite. Just slightly lighter than the Taormina, not bitter, not winey, deep, rich, and complex flavor. Really delicious! Most of my comparison has been, as I mentioned before, a 5-6 ounce pull with a grind set in about the middle...three notches from the finest grind setting. Hottest water temperature setting, too. I also routinely make lattes and both I and my wife like the Capri (and Gran Crema Espresso Forte) this way too. So, my conclusion...I really like both the Filicori Gran Crema Espresso Forte and the Cafe D'arte Capri. Both are delicious. There is something special about the Cafe D'arte that make is especially rich, almost dark, but not bitter and not winey. It's my favorite by just a hair. Thanks again for all suggestions. 11-01-13 05:11PM
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