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Illy vs Local roasts

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  • Illy vs Local roasts

    Greetings all

    as you can see from the numbe of posts im only a Newby at this coffee stuff but someting has been bugging me and there must be a reason for it. So here it is.

    I have just recently purchased a grinder and up until now have only gone through a couple of kilos of local roast. Getting to the end of last bag I remembered my wife had got me 250g of Illy a few weeks ago.

    After cracking open the can and put it through the grinder, I noticed that the grind was much finer than I have been getting from the local roasts. Does any one have any idea why this might be so?

    I also have to say the Illy surprised me because the local roasts all have tasted better than the canned Illi. Should I be surprised?


    Now I think I know what people are going to say but I would just like to confirm my thniking.

    Look forward to any comments.

    Ciao

    F.

  • #2
    Re: IllY vs Local roasts

    What grinder do you have?

    And by "I noticed that the grind was much finer" did you rub it between your fingers or was it a visual opinion?

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: IllY vs Local roasts

      Originally posted by Thundergod link=1208437097/0#1 date=1208440908
      What grinder do you have?

      And by "I noticed that the grind was much finer" did you rub it between your fingers or was it a visual opinion?
      The grinder is a De Longhi. And the setting was not moved between coffees. The way I could tell that is was finer is that it packed down in the tamp much more than the other coffees even when I put in the same volume.

      It also looks finer.

      F.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: IllY vs Local roasts

        Originally posted by Franco link=1208437097/0#0 date=1208437097
        I also have to say the Illy surprised me because the local roasts all have tasted better than the canned Illi. Should I be surprised?
        Probably not. That can had to come all the way from Italy, (or does illy roast in Aus?) and who knows how long ago it was roasted? So its quite possibly stale.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: IllY vs Local roasts

          interesting question folks. Talking about Australian context, of course,

          Should we ever buy anything brought all the way from Italy, rather than good local roast? I mean, its not exactly we are lacking artisan roasters here. Just out of curiosity, does anyone have a strong opinion on that?

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: IllY vs Local roasts

            I think Luca did a review of some US coffees that he got a hold of ... I think it was Luca anyway :-? ... maybe have a look at his blog ...

            As far as should we? Its up to you! I dont think I would, just because I expect a great deal of freshness would be lost by the time it got to me ... Plus, I dont have enough time to drink all the SOs that I want to, let alone trying all the great coffee Aussie roasters are churning out ...

            So much coffee, so little time ...

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: IllY vs Local roasts

              Originally posted by Michelle link=1208437097/0#5 date=1208482167
              I dont have enough time to drink all the SOs that I want to, let alone trying all the great coffee Aussie roasters are churning out ...
              my point, exactly!!!

              Ill try to find that review you are talking about
              thanks

              Ed

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: IllY vs Local roasts

                Hi Fanco

                This quote is from Illys website:

                "The special aroma of roasted coffee is due to volatile compounds. Volatile compounds leave coffee powder soon after grinding, unless it is pressurized."

                That might be one explanation for the "fineness" youve experienced. Maybe they didnt pressurize your can soon after grinding?

                chartres, I dont know why anyone would bother with imported roasted coffee - I think it might be stale before it gets to the docks on their part of the world, let alone ours.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: IllY vs Local roasts

                  Originally posted by Dennis link=1208437097/0#7 date=1208482583
                  chartres, I dont know why anyone would bother with imported roasted coffee - I think it might be stale before it gets to the docks on their part of the world, let alone ours.
                  Agreed Dennis....

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Illy vs Local roasts

                    Originally posted by MarcS link=1208437097/0#8 date=1208483992
                    Originally posted by Dennis link=1208437097/0#7 date=1208482583
                    chartres, I dont know why anyone would bother with imported roasted coffee - I think it might be stale before it gets to the docks on their part of the world, let alone ours.
                    Agreed Dennis....
                    I agree to your agreement.
                    Keep it real, keep it local, keep it fresh.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Illy vs Local roasts

                      Now I think it is appropriate to acknowkedge that Illy is an international company and nobody would deny they know coffee. However, I was thinking, in their persuit of finding a mass market which is largely uneducated outside Italy, is it possbile they have had to appeal to the lowest common denominator and find a blend which when compared to our local rosters is bland.

                      This is the quote that cought my eye when I went to the website

                      "The first step is to choose where those precious, fragrant, 100% Arabica quality beans are to come from. This is followed by harvesting, selecting, blending & roasting, the aroma & flavour of which must be consistent to ensure that you find the same time after time."

                      Is it possible that Illy is now the McDonalds or perhaps at best the Hungry Jacks of coffee?



                      F.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Illy vs Local roasts

                        Your average punter cafe goer doesnt realise that different grades of Arabica exist ... & is consequently & unknowingly enmeshed in the tricky marketing that says ...

                        "The first step is to choose where those precious, fragrant, 100% Arabica quality beans are to come from. This is followed by harvesting, selecting, blending & roasting, the aroma & flavour of which must be consistent to ensure that you find the same time after time."

                        ... the "same time after time"

                        yeah, mediocrity.

                        Tony >

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: IllY vs Local roasts

                          Interesting topic. The knee-jerk reaction is to parrot out that all imported coffee is crap, which I dont think is fairly far from the truth.

                          Working out exactly how crap imports are is another question entirely. Kenneth Davids runs a famous American webpage called Coffee Review, where he has been reviewing coffee for over a decade. As a result, Davids opinion has considerable clout. In fact, our own AASCA even flew him over to run a workshop one conference. Davids seems to really be more about drip brewed coffee than espresso, which is perfectly understandable if you consider that that is typically what his audience buys. It frustrates me to no end that in a decade of coffee reviewing, he still hasnt worked out that people would probably like to know what brewing method his comments are based on. Davids has also become controversial over the past few years in that these days 90 seems to be a low score for him, whereas traditionally 90 meant that a coffee was so good that you would basically tear your own eyeballs out to stop the constant flow of tears of joy.

                          Last August, Davids flew off the handle, in my mind, by publishing an article comparing italian coffee to US coffee. You can read it here. The article actually managed to rate a Segafredo blend a 93. Some of the imports out-scored the local coffees. I basically asked WTF was going on in a US professionals forum and they confirmed that the situation is not substantially different from here; ie. the imports are usually stale. Davids article doesnt deign to mention the age of the coffee when he tried it, so its a fair inference that it was past it.

                          In my mind, if you score something thats likely 6 months old within a few points of a non-espresso brewed Esmeralda, you have just completely shot your credibility to s#it. Instaurator from Michelles Espresso and I decided to actually put our money where my mouth was and do some taste testing. We had a lineup of a few fresh coffees and a few imports, brewed on a Linea in the next room by the lovely Zoe Delany and served to us blind. Surprisingly, Inny rated the Illy within a few points of the highest rated fresh coffee, saying that it was quite balanced. I found it to have an unpleasant black pepper flavour and punished it a few points, but it still came in third on my rankings. The other stale imports were way behind. Even so, the Illy didnt come within spitting distance of the stratospheric 89 that Davids gave it. It was a bad day for the locals, too, with them barely cracking the 80 barrier. (Zoe commented that the Illy was considerably more difficult to work with than the local coffee.)

                          The test really wasnt repeated enough to draw any stong inferences from it. Nonetheless, Im prepared to speculate that Illy might actually use better green coffee than we have access to in Australia, though the age simply conquers it. The test also shows that you can have bad freshly roasted coffee, too.

                          Mark Prince represented the US/Canadian contingents outrage with a similar, but much more thorough test. You can read about it here. Marks contingent were considerably less kind about Illy.

                          Anyhoo, that exercise is pretty academic. Im still of the view that Illy will basically never be great over here. Zoes shots were amongst the best Illy that I have ever had, and she had to work for it. Realistically, I dont think that your typical cafe would even come close. That said, I would LOVE to try Illy in Trieste at whatever they think the optimum age is.

                          Originally posted by Michelle link=1208437097/0#5 date=1208482167
                          I think Luca did a review of some US coffees that he got a hold of ... I think it was Luca anyway :-? ... maybe have a look at his blog ...
                          Yep, I got them 2nd hand from Mark et al at St Ali after SCAA last year. They were relatively fresh, though. The Vivace was about 3 weeks old, from memory, and in a sealed valve bag. It behaved fine. The Ecco was in an unsealed paper bag and behaved quite well, despite the travel ... in fact, it was incredibly sweet (Mark et. al. gave it huge scores in the article linked above). The Stumptown was past it, but nonetheless worthwhile tasting.

                          Hope thats been interesting reading ...

                          Luca

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Illy vs Local roasts

                            what about fiori coffee guys... its getting really big here in perth

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Illy vs Local roasts

                              Isnt it Perth-based though?

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