I do enjoy a nice espresso. In fact, I have to admit that I enjoy even quite ordinary coffee. In one job that I had I was much amused to find that staff at the local Starbucks had nicknamed me “Double Espresso Macchiato”. You know you’re an addict when …
Home brewed coffee can be a world away from the High Street coffee chains. A much-loved Gaggia Classic lives on the worktop in the kitchen, and I normally have some decent-ish beans in the fridge. But this Christmas, I was given some presents that have taken the coffee experience a big step forward.
In case any real coffee experts are reading this, I should stress that I’m only a baby when it comes to coffee connoisseurship. There’s a long way to go before I can regard myself as anything like a maven.
But back to the coffee. I was given a subscription to Has Bean, who will deliver a new variety each month. Superb coffee, accompanied by the most florid descriptions. The first variety was El Salvador La Ilusion Bourbon. The description read, “Think fizzy pink lemonade, a bright and delicious acidity, with the sweetness of a fruit salad sweet from childhood.” Perhaps fortunately, I could taste neither pink lemonade nor fruit salad chews.
Subsequently we’ve had Ethiopian Sidamo Borena (apricots and peaches apparently) which packs a real punch, and Colombian Oporapa. All three are superb in different ways, and are a real education in coffee tasting.
What else? Well, going clockwise round the picture from the bag of coffee, we have a wonderfully-named Grindenstein knock out box for the coffee grounds, a tamper to firm the grounds, and a bottomless filter. The last of these is rather super. For one thing, it contains rather more coffee than the normal double shot – probably nearer a triple. That really gives you a caffeine boost! For another, it doesn’t have the heat-sapping portafilter spout, so you get a better crema.
Oh, and I also received a pair of heavyweight espresso glasses. Bringing it all together, I’ve just made myself a wonderful late-morning espresso using the Ethiopian Sidamo Borena, which I’m sipping as I write this.