Espresso Review - Taiwan Espresso by Simon Hsieh
  • Simon Hsieh's Aroma Roast Coffees

    Taoyuan City, Taiwan
  • Echo Blend Taiwan Espresso

Roast: Medium Review Date: May 2011
Origin: Taiwan Price: NT$1500/16 ounces

Blind Assessment: Evaluated as espresso. Ken, at 92, liked this unusual sample better than co-taster Sean Kohmescher (90) did, perhaps because Ken read more depth in the aromatics and flavor. Sean stopped at citrus, honey and caramel in aroma and small cup whereas Ken added dark chocolate and pungent fir. Ken also found a bit more going on in the finish, with flowers complicating a deep, bananaish chocolate. In two parts milk Ken and Sean read the cup about the same although applying slightly different language, with Sean citing lemon and ”light caramel” and Ken a “lemony chocolate.”

Notes: The possibility that this 100% Taiwan-grown coffee is a blend of different farms or different processes technically disqualifies it from consideration as a single-origin espresso in the contemporary definition, but it’s a fine espresso from a very unusual origin. In addition to his retail roasting operation, Aroma Roast Coffees, Simon Hsieh also runs Soaring Phoenix Trading, a business focused on purposed-built commercial espresso blends and high quality single-origin coffees. Visit or call 886-0983-749876 for more information.

Who Should Drink It: Those aficionados interested in a fine espresso from a very rare coffee origin. As for the question of whether it expresses depth to support the citrus and honey, try it and be a tie-breaker.


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