What I am drinking now - Paradise Espresso Havana
This is a review of my initial impressions of Paradise coffee roasters Espresso Havana. It is fairly fresh – 3 days post roast, so the taste may change dramatically over the next week or so – possibly for the better. Light roasts for my taste often do get better later, but I feel like some of the darker roasts tend to mature earlier.
It is no secret that I am a fan of Paradise Roasters. I love their Classico and Nuevo blends and I think they are one of the top roasters in the world. I also think they do darker roasts just about as well as anyone so when I am in the mood for a dark roast espresso they are one of the first places I turn.
Espresso Havana, however, is a blend that I have never tried before today. I ordered it in order to try something new. It is labeled as a dark roast, while Classico is called medium. I think of Classico as fairly dark, but by no means too dark and not as dark as Nuevo, which I also really like. Then again they call Nuevo dark so it was not obvious if this would be darker than Nuevo or not.
While I did not have the two next to each other, it strikes me as much darker than Nuevo. It is very good, but pushes my taste in dark roasts to the very edge. It lacks the subtle flavors, fruits, and acids of light roasts. It however, fitting of an espresso with a Cuban name has dark tobacco flavors and chocolates in spades.
I found it needed a low dose to taste its best. I started at the recommended 18 gram dose, but quickly cut back to 16.5 and preferred it there. I will try dropping down to 14 and it may continue to improve there. We’ll see.
I also found it was best at lower temps although it seemed surprisingly unresponsive to temp. It was a little better as I dropped it about 4 degrees (probably from around 199 to 195 based on the flush) but not dramatically better.
I think the litmus test for this one is easy – if you like quite dark roasts that are well done you will like it, if not you probably won’t. I think it also would be good for people with picky equipment since it seems to be fairly similar although not identical under various temperatures and doses.
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