Are you a coffee connoisseur that knows everything there is to know about coffee? Or are you one of the countless people that don't quite fully understand what an espresso is? If you are curious what the difference is between espresso beans and coffee beans, or if you just want to know what the best espresso beans are, this article is for you.
Not to worry, with all of the misinformation out there, I find myself second guessing if I fully understand what an espresso is. So, lets start with what an espresso isn't.
The "Espresso Bean" - The Best Espresso Beans?
Is an espresso a type of coffee bean? No!
Between false marketing ploys and the inaccuracy of information being spread, many people have this notion that an espresso can only be achieved with a magical type of coffee bean grown in Espresso-land. This is false, the coffee bean that you use for drip coffee comes from the same location and bean varietal that you use for an espresso.
The "Espresso Blend"
Is an espresso shot only achieved using a specific blend of coffee? No!
In fact, you can use Single Origin coffee to produce both a great traditional and modern shot of espresso. At Black Ink Coffee Company, we offer a blend of coffee that is optimized for producing espresso shots, but a blend is not needed.
So the next time you hear this misconception, educate the person spreading the inaccurate claim!
The "Espresso Roast"
Is an espresso the way you roast the bean? No!
Coffee beans used for an espresso are generally roasted no differently than the beans used for drip coffee. You could even produce a great tasting shot of espresso with beans roasted in a skillet.
The "Dark Espresso Roast Degree"
Is an espresso only achieved with dark roasted coffee? No!
An espresso can be achieved with a light, medium or dark roast, it is all about taste and preference. A traditional espresso or a "traditional espresso roast", is darker in color and stems from the European culture. In Europe, it is common practice to drink the espresso straight with no added steamed milk, flavoring or sweetener.
A modern espresso roast or "third wave espresso", is typically lighter in color and may even consist of only one Single Origin coffee. If you find yourself venturing along the East or West coast, don't be surprised if you experience a modern espresso shot. These are typically very flavorful since most flavor nuances still remain in the carefully and lightly roasted beans. However, they may be much lighter in color and taste.
WHAT'S ESPRESSO AND WHAT ARE THE BEST ESPRESSO BEANS?
Espresso is simply a concentrated 1-2 oz shot of pressure-brewed coffee. This is achieved using 15-20 grams of finely ground coffee that has been freshly ground before consuming. The actual brewing method should take more than 15 seconds and no longer than 25 seconds to achieve a great tasting shot. Try to aim for the 20 second mark!
When properly extracted, an espresso shot will now have a thick, creamy and oily top layer called crema. This crema is one indicator of a quality espresso, meaning that the extraction technique, beans and grind were perfect. Making a great espresso is truly an art as well as a science, make sure you tell the barista "thank you" the next time you enjoy one of these espresso beverages.
So what do we think makes the best espresso beans? Simple, our espresso roast!
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