Recently, as I happened to be in Helsinki, I went to get some beans from the Cafetoria Roastery coffee shop. I was really happy to meet their founder and master roaster, Ivan Ore, who is not only a great coffee professional, but a true gentleman, as well. Ivan was kind enough to show me some of their new products. One of them was this new version of Espresso 7, Cafetoria’s take on the classic Italian Arabica/Robusta espresso blend. Now, I had had—and loved—Espresso 7 before, but Ivan suggested I try the new incarnation. He told me that he is constantly experimenting with their blends, trying to make them even better. Since I love everything about Italian coffee, I was happy to grab a bag!
On the label it says that Espresso 7 is made of seven different beans from Brazil, Nicaragua, Rwanda, El Salvador, Ivory Coast, India, and Cameroon. 70% of the blend is Arabica, the remaining 30% is Robusta. Sounds pretty Italian to me!
They also say that the blend is roasted the Italian way. On the Cafetoria scale, the roast level is dark at 4/5. Of course, every manufacturer has its own scale of darkness. To me, the roast looks pretty ”medium”, or 3/5 on the scale that many Italian manufacturers seem to use. My point is, many non-Italian ”espresso” blends are a lot darker than this. But I don’t think a true espresso has to be super dark. I’d rather have my espresso roasted like this!
As for the flavor, the company states that there is ”a great roundness” to this coffee, and ”notes of cocoa, hazelnuts, dried berries and toast: Like in Italy!”
Of course, I just had to brew this coffee in my trusty Bialetti moka pot. As I did so, I found out that the bouquet was absolutely mouthwatering. I detected
- dried fruits
- some of that floral, hyacinth-like quality of Robusta
- baking cocoa
From the very first sip, it was clear: The body was full, and the mouthfeel was extremely creamy. At the same time, it didn’t feel (as we would say in Finnish) ”thick”. Exactly the way I like it!
The flavor was no less than amazing. Espresso 7 was very much like genuine Italian Arabica/Robusta espresso blends, only better than most of them. All the familiar elements were there, but it was more well-balanced, well-behaved and sophisticated than most Italian offerings. There was absolutely no harshness to speak of.
The flavor profile was super complex. All of the qualities I detected in the bouquet were there in the flavor as well. It was nutty, sweet (molasses, brown sugar, dried fruits), and floral. It also had this cocoa-like texture, and there was a hint of something toasted as well. Despite its complexity, however, Espresso 7 never felt too ”busy” or all over the place. Instead, it offered me a beautiful mélange of flavors, all of which worked together in perfect harmony.
To sum up, it is safe to say that Espresso 7 from Cafetoria is one of the best ”Italian” espressos I’ve ever had. Period. It could even be the very best. I know, that is quite a statement, coming from someone who loves Italian cuisine more than anything. But I really mean it. It’s that good.
Ladies and gentlemen, please, show some love to Cafetoria! Get yourself some Espresso 7, or any of their fantastic coffees. They really deserve it.