If you're a coffee aficionado, then you already know there's nothing quite like a perfectly pulled shot of espresso — the intense flavor, crema, and kick of caffeine is the best way to start your day or when you're resting on your balcony in the evening. While it may seem intriguing and interesting, it can be pretty challenging to get that perfect beans for espresso. So, we've saved you the time and stress and curated a list of some of the best espresso beans available.
What is the difference between espresso beans and coffee beans?
The main difference between espresso beans and coffee beans lies in their roast level and intended use.
Espresso beans: Espresso beans are typically roasted darker than regular coffee beans. The dark roast brings out bold flavors, rich aromas, and oils, making them suitable for brewing espresso. These beans are finely ground and brewed under high pressure, resulting in a concentrated shot of espresso with a distinct crema on top.
Coffee beans: Coffee beans, on the other hand, can refer to a broader range of beans used for various brewing methods. They come in different roast levels, including light, medium, and dark. Lighter roasts tend to retain more of the beans' natural flavors and acidity, while darker roasts develop deeper, bolder flavors. Coffee beans are typically ground coarser and brewed using methods like drip brewing, pour-over, French press, or cold brew.
In summary, the key differences between espresso beans and coffee beans are the roast level, intended use, and the brewing methods associated with them. Espresso beans are dark-roasted and finely ground for brewing concentrated shots of espresso, while coffee beans can encompass a wider range of roasts and are used for various brewing methods.
Spirit Animal Coffee offers bold, rich flavors of ethically sourced, high-quality beans. Spirit Animal Coffee has a limited selection, but the quality of its dark roast is incredible. This dark roast has tasting notes of citrus, honey, sweet fruit, floral, and peach. It gave us the most delicious cup of espresso!
- Bold and rich flavor
- High-quality beans
- Ethical sourcing
- Limited availability
- Higher price point
If you're new to the Nostalgia brand and you're a great lover of Espresso coffee, we suggest you try out the Memory Lane Espresso Coffee Beans. Capable of sparking joy in both coffee enthusiasts and connoisseurs, this coffee bean makes an excellent espresso with great taste and an even better feel with milk. It has notes of Swiss chocolate and fig-like sweetness and was one one of the highest-rated blends in America for 2022!
- Has a good and distinctive taste
- Notes of Swiss chocolate
- Delicious coffee based on customer reviews
- Leans too much to chocolate for some
Art de Vivre - Lantern Robusta offers a bold and flavorful coffee experience at an affordable price. It's a great option for those seeking a strong and high-caffeine coffee with a robust character. However, it's important to consider personal preferences and brewing techniques to ensure a balanced and enjoyable cup of coffee.
- Rich and Bold Flavor
- High Caffeine Content
- Versatile Brewing
- Affordable Option
- Pronounced Bitterness
- Limited Complexity
- Potential Harshness
Our Moxy Arabica blend is super smooth and fruity without the high acidic sour coffee vibe. It is grown in Vietnam and roasted in Brooklyn using no additives, flavorings, or oils to allow the distinct flavor of the beans to shine. Our Moxy coffee beans are ground finely for brewing with a Vietnamese Phin filter and are also suitable for making espresso or cold brew, or using a French press. Grown in Vietnam, roasted in Brooklyn and partnered directly with 4th generation farmer in Vietnam’s Central Highlands.
- Smooth & fruity coffee
- No additives, flavorings, or oils used
- 100% Arabica beans
- Finley ground for brewing with a Vietnamese Phin filter
- High acidic sour coffee vibe
- Low caffeine content
Sourced from a single-origin farm, Coopers delivers robust flavors to its dark java. Despite its wide selection of blends, the coffee is priced affordably. Grown from volcanic soil rich in minerals and nutrients, single origin Columbian coffee beans are known throughout the world for their quality. This signature roasting process helps bring out a unique and celebrated, yet mild flavor that includes hints of rustic sweetness, cocoa, and dark fruit notes. Fully Washed & Roasted in the U.S.A.
- Strong and robust flavors
- Diverse selection of blends
- Affordable prices
- Inconsistent packaging quality
- May lack flavor complexity.
Focusing on small-batch roasting gives more control to Clout Coffee’s roasting process. The coffee leaves a smooth and well-balanced taste on your tongue with attention to detail in sourcing and roasting.
While it possesses the enticing aroma and smoothness reminiscent of whisky, it surpasses traditional whisky with its superior qualities. This coffee is a delightful and invigorating choice to lift your spirits. Crafted by combining single origin Colombian Arabica beans with freshly emptied whisky barrels, it delivers a rich and full-bodied taste. The infusion of earthy and vanilla flavors creates a remarkably smooth whisky-like finish that will leave you craving for another cup. Don't miss out on the opportunity to savor this extraordinary blend - get your hands on Clout's Whisky Barrel-Aged Coffee today.
- Smooth and well-balanced taste
- Offers both single-origin and blends
- Limited information on sourcing practices
- Packaging could be more appealing
Out of the Grey is known for its commitment to sourcing high-quality beans. The House Espresso blend is crafted with carefully selected Arabica beans from different regions, ensuring a consistent and flavorful coffee experience. The House Espresso - Out of the Grey offers a well-balanced flavor profile. It combines the richness of dark chocolate with subtle notes of caramel and a hint of nuttiness. This balance creates a pleasant and enjoyable espresso that is neither overly bitter nor overly sweet.
- Well-balanced Flavor
- Freshly Roasted
- Moderate Complexity
- Medium Roast Preference
The Espresso Dark Roast from Volcanica offers a rich and robust flavor profile. It features notes of dark chocolate, caramel, and smoky undertones, resulting in a deep and satisfying espresso experience. The flavor is bold and full-bodied, making it an ideal choice for those who prefer a strong cup of coffee. Volcanica is known for sourcing premium coffee beans from volcanic regions around the world. This espresso blend is made from meticulously selected Arabica beans, which contribute to its exceptional flavor and aroma. The beans are carefully roasted to bring out their distinct characteristics.
- Rich and Robust Flavor
- High-Quality Sourcing
- Freshness and Roasting
- Intense Flavor may not suit all palates
- Limited Flavor Nuances
- Higher Price Range
As the name suggests, this bean is perfect for making a morning wake up espresso shot. With beans originating from Guatemala and Ethiopia, this espresso blend is a perfect balance of dried fruit, crisp notes of citrus, and a rich cocoa body. While this is an espresso blend, the beans are also perfect for drip coffee — so, that's a 2-in-one package.
- Excellent notes with good flavor notes
- Perfect for morning shot of espresso
- Bean undergo proper washing
- Price is higher as it is contributing to a charity
What are the Best Espresso Machine in 2023?
Remember that choosing the best espresso machine depends on your budget, brewing preferences, and desired features. It's essential to consider factors such as boiler type, temperature control, ease of use, and maintenance requirements when making your decision. We wrote a few articles on the subject:
- Best Manual Espresso Maker
- Best Espresso Machine Under $200
- Best Espresso Machine Under $500
- Product Review: Wirsh Espresso Coffee Machine
Once you have acquired a good espresso machine, you can check out this article on Barista Tools!
How To Make Espresso Without A Machine
Making espresso without a machine may seem daunting, but with the right techniques, you can still achieve a satisfying cup of espresso in your home. Start by selecting finely ground coffee beans specifically labeled for espresso. Heat water to just below boiling point, preferably around 195-205°F (90-96°C). Add the desired amount of ground coffee in a small pot or saucepan and pour hot water over it. Stir gently and let it steep for about four minutes. Place a fine-mesh sieve or a coffee filter over your cup and slowly pour the steeped coffee through, allowing the liquid to filter into the cup while leaving the coffee grounds behind. The result is a rich and concentrated espresso-like coffee that can be enjoyed on its own or used as a base for your favorite espresso-based drinks like lattes or cappuccinos. Remember to experiment with coffee-to-water ratios and brewing times to find the perfect balance for your taste preferences. You can also use James Hoffmann's Aeropress method.
The Best Espresso Beans For Lattes
Choosing the right espresso beans can make all the difference when crafting a delicious latte. For a harmonious balance of flavor and texture, opt for espresso beans with a medium to dark roast profile. Look for beans that possess a smooth and creamy body with hints of chocolate, caramel, or nutty undertones. Some popular espresso bean varieties that excel in latte creations include Brazilian Santos, Colombian Supremo, or Italian blends. These beans deliver a robust and full-bodied espresso that pairs exceptionally well with milk, creating a luscious and velvety latte experience. Remember, personal preference plays a significant role. Don't be afraid to sample different espresso beans and find the flavor profile that best complements your taste preferences for the perfect latte.
The intense flavor is one of the main reasons coffee lovers prefer a shot of espresso. If you're still unsure of which espresso beans to try out, you can make a choice from our list above and indulge yourself with the awesomeness found in their taste.