Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Rocket Classic Espresso Blend

I've been enjoying this blend for the past week or so. I still have more to think about before writing my opinions here.

Stay tuned.

So, I'm a little (okay, alot) late writing this thing. I've been pretty busy lately, but I'm writing it now.

Classic Espresso comes in a black one-way valve bag with heat-sealed ends, and a nifty looking label with a mirror images of a grouphead and drip tray in black and white with some text that says, "The art and science of espresso".

Very attractive indeed.. but how does it taste?

As a normale shot, there is a nice strong explosion of very complex flavors right off the bat. The balance is such that individual parts are difficult to pick out, but the complexity is quite obvious, and quite pleasant. Going down, the massive hit becomes a gentle caress, and a smooth sweetness is dominant.

As a dose "under the line", the subtle flavors pop a bit more at the cost of a minute amount of depth. The description on the website says something about dried fruit, but nothing about floral notes. My palate experienced very little dried fruit, and dubious amounts of floral notes. As the liquid moves over the palate, these floral notes gently subside, and a carmely sweetness is present, with a very pleasant aftertaste that lingers long after the demitasse is cleared.

An over-dose, with the coffee just touching the shower screen upon locking in, produced a very sweet ristretto-style shot with chocolate tones and some caramel(at ~40seconds. There was another that took a full minute with similar results). While both flavors are present, they are not simultaneously present. That is, the flavor is not "chocolate caramel" or "caramel chocolate", but rather, more to the effect of, "chocolate!" "oh, now there's caramel!". The subtleties diminished, I believe this dose would go over quite well with someone new-ish to espresso. Ristretto-style shots often do, as they are more sweet, and not at all bitter, without having to think too much about the complexity that would otherwise be obvious.

Flavors that I tasted were floral, SLIGHTLY nutty, with some spice that I can't quite put my finger on. I think that the floral notes and sweetness may meld together for some to develop into the dried fruit flavor in Rocket Coffee Roaster's descriptor for this specific blend.

Overall, a very good blend. Hits you hard at first for the explosion of flavor we are all looking for in a normale(or maybe even slight underdose), but eases out as it goes down into the smoothness we are all looking for in a ristretto.

Cuts through milk quite well. Even the complexity is still obvious and present in milk, while the caramel and chocolate flavors come alive thanks to the flavor of the milk itself complimenting these particular flavors exceptionally well (as with most blends with these characteristics).

Don't pass this one up!


Reighlok said...

How does it compare to West Coast Roasting's espresso blend?

Larry said...

Thank you Jason for doing a great, fair and thorough review!

You are always one of the first people I think about when I've got something new, different or exciting as it relates to coffee.