Evaluated as espresso. For both Ken (93) and co-taster Andy Newbom (93) softly complex fruit, floral and citrus were the main themes here, with the most distinctive nuance the sweet, rich character of the citrus. Andy described it in multiple ways, from "citrus jelly" to "chiffony and meringuey" in the small cup to "lemon curd" in four parts milk. Ken also cited a backgrounded crisp cocoa that supported the pervasive lemony richness. Probably best as a straight shot, but successfully imposed its citrusy elegance on tall milk.
By Kenneth Davids
September 2nd, 2010
A big winner in four parts milk. Co-taster Andy Newbom (90) had it at 9 in milk while Ken (93) went to the limit at 10. Both keyed on a big, round, peachy fruit complexity and fine balance of milk and coffee. As straight espresso dominated by fruit as well: ripe, apricot-toned, a little wine-like, with a tart "sparkle" (Andy) of citrus. But the whole sensory package bloomed in milk with particular power and completeness.
Evaluated as espresso. In the small cup impressively deep and complex. Co-taster Andy Newbom (92) cited the range and balance of sensation ("intense yet nuanced"; "awesome"); Ken (92) was more specific in his praise of a pungent, slightly savory fruit: "black currant, blackberry, aromatic wood, licorice." Maintains complexity in four parts milk: "chocolaty... completely malty" (Andy), "crisp, butterscotch and caramel" (Ken).
Evaluated as espresso. Co-taster Andy Newbom (92) simply called the deeply floral aroma of the straight shot "glorious". Both Andy and Ken (92) also admired its "smooth and sweetly syrupy" (Andy) mouthfeel. And Andy, always ready with an adjective, piles on at least ten, all good ones, on the flavor. Ken stuck with an approving "minty, cherryish fruit." Ken (9) was more enthusiastic than Andy (8) regarding this complex blend's performance in four parts milk; for him it maintained a "delicate, tartly fruity-toned chocolate," whereas Andy felt the presence faded a bit in milk: "hints of sweet citrus cream and … cocoa prevailed, but barely."
Evaluated as espresso. Crisp cocoa and pungent fruit dominate in the small cup with impressive vanilla and floral top notes nuancing the aroma. Medium body, smoothly syrupy mouthfeel. Co-taster Andy Newbom (91) particularly admired a "complete and elegant" structure that balances sweet with a pungent hint of savory. The savory drops away in milk where both Ken (91) and Andy found impressive chocolaty sweetness ("Cocoa pops!" Andy exclaimed) deepened by a rich, fig-like fruit.
Evaluated as espresso. Co-taster Andy Newbom (91) and Ken (91) in particular admired the mouthfeel of the straight shot: "big in the mouth ... viscous but not heavy" in Andy's words. In flavor licoricy and spicy, slightly sharp, rounded by prune and berry notes. In four parts milk the flavor plumped up and rounded beautifully toward a complex chocolate, in Andy's words "chocolate ... nuts and candied apple."
Evaluated as espresso. Rich, fruit-toned aroma. Brightly fruity in flavor with an undercurrent of licorice and aromatic wood. Slightly lean in mouthfeel. Smoothes out in a long, sweetly rich finish. "Improved in milk," according to co-taster Andy Newbom (88), who reported the fruit rounded and deepened toward cherry and plum. Ken (89) agreed, finding hints of flowers and chocolate as well.
Evaluated as espresso. Delicately rich aroma, medium body but slightly leanish mouthfeel. Co-cupper Andy Newbom (88) found the flavor in the small cup a bit sweeter-toned ("fruit and chocolate") than Ken (89), who described a "crisp aromatic wood, walnut and licorice". But both felt the cup smoothed and softened in a pleasing, fruit-toned finish. In four parts milk displayed an attractive and rather distinctive dried fruit and chocolate character: "sweet chocolate, prunes and carob" in Andy’s words.
Evaluated as espresso. Particularly impressive aroma: sweet-toned and delicate: "flowers, orangy chocolate" (Ken, 89). Smooth, buttery mouthfeel. In flavor, lively but rather "tangy and sharp" (co-cupper Andy Newbom, 88); a little too much unripe lemon and licorice sensation perhaps. Chocolaty but simple in milk.
Evaluated as espresso. A solid, balanced blend with flowers, chocolate, and a hint of savory spice and aromatic wood. In co-taster Andy Newbom's (88) more colorful words: "sweet, fruity, caramel, spicy, balanced and soft, warm nuts and cocoa with a touch of fruit." That makes it sound a bit more than solid (Ken had it at 88 also), but a rather muted aroma and heavy finish dragged on its rating. In four parts milk, however, it held up with admirable consistency: tart chocolate, nut, and a continuing hint of flowers.