Tostatura Scura (Dark Roast) (ESE pod)

Location: Trieste, Italy

Origin: Not disclosed.

Roast: Medium-Dark

Est. Price:

Review Date: January 2009

Agtron: 0/50

Aroma: 7

Body: 8

Flavor: 8

Aftertaste: 8

With Milk: 8

Blind Assessment:

Produced from an ESE pod on a FrancisFrancis! pod brewer. Subdued aroma: vaguely sweet, some leather and cherryish chocolate. In the small cup lean-tending but lightly syrupy mouthfeel, sweet with aromatic wood notes rounding toward a crisp dark chocolate. Sweetly rich short finish saturated with dark chocolate fades toward a slight astringency in the long. In two parts milk light-bodied but balanced in flavor with milk-rounded dark chocolate and aromatic wood notes.


ESE (Easy Serving Espresso) pods are wafer-like single-serving sized portions of ground espresso coffee compressed and enclosed in filter paper. Any company that has access to the proper machinery can produce them. Although “pod adaptors” are available for many home espresso machines, ESE pods seem to produce best results when used on home machines exclusively designed for them. We tested this set of sample pods on the pod-only FrancisFrancis! X6 Trio home espresso machine, which allows for some control of extraction rate by how firmly the pod-bearing portafilter is tightened into the machine. We evaluated this espresso at a 35-second extraction for a one-ounce serving. At this writing about 75 cents per pod on the IllyCaffe website. Illy, among the world’s most technically sophisticated coffee roasters, has successfully positioned its name and its quietly graceful, rather expensive espresso blends as a worldwide prestige brand. Visit www.illyusa.com or call 800-872-4559 for more information.

Who Should Drink It: A discreetly pungent dark-roasted espresso for pod brewers.

This review originally appeared in the January, 2009 tasting report: Convenience First: Espresso Pods and Capsules

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