T.C.'s Preferred Espresso Brands

I get asked a lot about which espresso companies I like.

So without waste of time, here are just a couple favorite espressos (outside local roasters who make great espresso I buy from) I've had over the years:

Pellini is an Italian company based in Verona and is perhaps the best espresso I've ever had. I discovered them while perusing the SIAL in Paris back in 2004 (where I had the privilege of tasting espresso from a company who were the exclusive distributors to the Vatican. Naturally, it was an outstanding coffee but the name escapes me after 11 years). Unfortunately, it's very hard to find - if at all - and may be forced to order online. If you do, I highly recommend it.

Though Umbria's family origins are traced back to Perugia (home of the delicious Baci chocolate), the company is based in Seattle. Umbria is a recent addition to my long list having tried it on my recent travels in Chicago.

49th Parallel operate out of Vancouver and is a very good espresso. A little pricey (like Illy) but if you're an espresso junkie, you may be willing to fork over the roughly $15 price tag for 250g.

There have been a few other roasters (Cafe Vergnano, Musetti, Danesi, Sant' Eustachio etc.) big or small  I've sampled over the years in numerous locations including Vermont (I recently tried one in Stowe and the name of the espresso escapes me at the moment. I tried it in a chocolate store), Massachusetts and a bunch of places in between that were very good. In fact, there are plenty of outstanding roasters not just in Italy but right here in North America as well.

You just have to find the one you like.

As far as popular espressos go, you can't really go wrong with Lavazza. Cafe Kimbo is another albeit lesser known espresso I think is pretty good.

Thus concludes this rather clunky and informal post on espresso. I wish I could go into more details but I'm afraid I didn't do a great job of keeping the names of all espressos I've tried over the years!

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