Which supermarket Italian espresso to try next?

Discussion in 'The Cafe'' started by WalterK, Aug 17, 2018.

    I'd be curious to see what you think of that!

    I've been playing around with the Rossa for the past few days. The packaging had a use-by date of mid 2019, so it isn't the absolutely freshest possible. The other two Lavazzas had use-by dates in early 2020.

    Of the three Lavazzas I've tried in this thread, it is the most traditional of the bunch. I found it very familiar and good. The packaging described its flavor profile as "chocolaty", but I tasted no such notes; perhaps it was due to its age. I found it a little weak when used in a paper-lined percolator and in a pour-over, but it was fine in the moka pot.

    Say whatever you will about Lavazza, each of the three types I've tried are completely different. One should eventually find one to their liking.

    If I were to use only one of the Lavazzas for all three of my brewing methods, I would get the Rossa. But if I were to get one just for the moka pot, it would be the Oro, the less powerful of the bunch.

    So far, to my taste, I believe stronger coffees are better for the percolators and pour-overs. Moka pots make such strong coffee that my delicate North-American coffee tastebuds appreciates a slightly weaker coffee.

    Onto the Medaglia d'Oro!

    Haven't forgotten you; will be trying it out this week.
  2. Wow you all are on a rampage :D
    Keep going!

  3. Finally came back to report on this experiment. I only had enough Oro left to make a 50/50 mix with the Rossa for one percolator, one pour-over, and one moka-pot.

    Keep in mind that my Oro package had been open for a few weeks more than the Rossa, and the Rossa package was not the freshest to begin with.

    The percolator and pour-over made very good mellow coffee but it completely lost the floral/fruity notes that made the Oro special.

    In the moka pot, it unexpectedly made for a slightly bitter coffee. Neither the Oro, nor the Rossa alone produced that result. I don't get it; but I don't have any more of the mix to try it a second time. The coffee was still good though.​

  4. Interesting results, I only make espresso maybe there's something in that.
  5. It's a complex art for sure.
  6. Final Update

    I was quite lucky this time in terms of freshness of the coffee as I arrived when the clerk was filling the shelves with the new arrivals.

    I got a can of Medaglia D'Oro with a best-by date of June 2020 (22 months away). It would have been nice to try all four types of coffee with a similar best-by date, but that wasn't really possible.

    I really liked this coffee, it was very good in all three manners of preparation. It was a little stronger than the others so a bit of tweaking with the quantities used in the percolator and pour-over was necessary.

    In the moka-pot, it produced much more froth than the other three types and the taste was also much more consistent vis-a-vis the other two methods of preparation. ( in past posts I had mentioned that I found the taste "notes" varied a lot depending on what method was used to make it)

    It is a darker roast coffee than the Lavazzas tried here, the grounds were much darker in the can.

    Being initially fooled that it was Italian (it's from Florida), I was expecting not to like it. But it turns out it was my favorite of the bunch. It's not jaw-droppingly spectacular, but it is a very good coffee to have in the pantry "just in case".
  7. If you press the coffee too much in the moka you may get a bitter coffee.
    Not sure this is the case here, but it'd stand to reason I think
  8. Didn't know about that.

    I had read the warning that tapping down the coffee too much will prevent the water from coming up and one is risking an explosion with cheaply made pots.

    I don't tap the coffee down, just scoop it in, then run the back of a knife over the top.

    Inconsistent city water quality could also be a factor.
  9. Hello,

    I like the Lavazza Red. A lot.

    Take care
  10. Eight O'clock Dark Roast Italian (Espresso) is very good.
  11. Ad Astra

    Ad Astra Ambassador

    Yes, and YES! Love this stuff.

  12. Ad Astra

    Ad Astra Ambassador

    Drinking a Lavazza now, and *don't* love it … Bustelo Supreme is way … nicer. This is a little bit bitter, less chocolatey. Almost a sour note.

    Can just says "Medium Roast," so not sure how it measures up to those listed …

  13. Ad Astra

    Ad Astra Ambassador

    Picked up a fresh-ground bag of much-touted Starbucks espresso coffee, and, though better (in my 15-bar machine) than La Llave and Lavazza, it also does not measure up to Bustelo Supereme ... cannot find a better tasting espresso coffee. To me and Mrs. AA, that is.

    Next up: Black Rifle Co. "AK-47 Espresso."

    We also have a bag of Pilon Supremo to try ... but. Bustelo and Pilon are both owned by the same company and taste pretty similar.

  14. Don't want to hijack the thread but I've been using bustelo supreme in my Moka Pot with not good results. What is your process for using it in the moka pot?

    Thanks for your help,
  15. Ad Astra

    Ad Astra Ambassador

    I have noticed different results with the same coffee in the low pressure Moka (2-3 bars) and the higher pressure Breville Café Roma (15 bar) machines.

    Café La Llave tastes good enough in the Moka, and bitter/lousy in the Breville! I can only conclude the harder the beans are pressed by the pressure, different levels of oils etc. are extracted.

    Now Bustelo Supreme always was good in my moka pot … it just gets better with higher pressure, it seems.

    You could try packing the cup more or less, and being sure you are using the right amount of water. Moka pots are almost foolproof when used by my Cuban aunts! And they use Bustelo and Pilon almost always.


  16. +1 for Illy.

    Not Italian, but Cafe Bustelo is an awesome bodega style espresso at a great price point.
  17. Alacrity59

    Alacrity59 Moderator Emeritus

    I like the Crema e Gusto Lavazza. The Robusta beans add that caffeine hit I like to start the day. The balance with Arabica is perfect for me.

    Coffee is like music and other things to me. Different things are best at different times. I vary things up. Mostly things work out at least very good. Sometimes the balance of things is just excellent. Love days like that. Trying to have more of those days.
  18. Ad Astra

    Ad Astra Ambassador

    Finally picked up the Illy medium roast; still have to try the Black Rifle AK-47 beans.

    Halfway through the pound of Starbucks, really not bad. I'd still give Bustelo Supremo an A+ and this, an A.

  19. Marco

    Marco Ambassador

    Gentlemen, for a really high quality Italian coffee I do suggest:

    Caffè Vergnano 1882


    Caffè Pellini


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