Really Good Espresso in Malaysia


I said that good espresso in Malaysia virtually DOES NOT EXIST go in year 2007.

It’s time to update the list. It is good to say that after more then 2 years since, there have been some improvement in the local GOURMET coffee scene.

Well, I have to say that I am regularly having very decent and good espresso. That is because I am making them myself. But we must understand that brewing coffee the espresso method is very different from other brewing methods. And it is one of the most expensive way to brew coffee.

You will need a decent espresso machine (not those toys you find in electronic shops), a decent grinder (again, not those toys in the electronic shops), good quality fresh roasted beans and good barista skills. Without these 4 elements, you will not get good espresso.

Good espresso is flavourful. Notes of chocolates, nuts, citrus fruits like orange and berries can be experienced. Do not be surprised (or maybe you should be surprised) if you even taste sweetness which I have had many times with good espresso. Usually too with subtle bitterness. Notice the word “subtle”. BITTERNESS is not a PRIMARY profile of good espresso… in fact, any high quality good coffee is not bitter at all. Merely subtle.

Hey, all you Home Barista… are you guys and gals enjoying good espresso at home? Tell us more about your good and great espresso moment.

Ok… back to the list. I can say that for myself, I have only tasted good espresso in two commercial settings.

Cafe Departure Lounge
I love their espresso from their House Blend. BUT be warned… It is on the acidic side of things. It is bright, fruity and sweet. Brightness is not something most people like in their coffee. I urge you to give them a try. Their coffee is fresh and roasted by the excellent people of Five Senses Coffee, Australia.

Espressamente
The only place I know that serves illy the way it should be served. Love their “mafia-Corleone-family” gang of baristas.  A well made illy espresso is chocolaty, nutty and sweet. Had one recently pulled my Roy-Corleone 😀

Anymore cafe out there serving good espresso??? To cafe owner, if you are serving good espresso, do let me know.

The Barista
If you are going to either of the two cafes, always ask for the name of the barista. If you find someone who can pull you a good shot of  espresso, remember their name man. These people are hard to find.

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38 thoughts on “Really Good Espresso in Malaysia

  1. Nic

    i remember i had their all day breakfast with latte at departure lounge at solaris. it was almost a year back. pretty nice ambiance during a drizzling afternoon but i didnt remember the taste of the latte.

    thx for the post, ive just read about you on sunday star.

  2. towjin

    thanks for the info! and i saw a write up about you and wee chuan on The Star today. very informative! i shall keep tt section for reference 😀

  3. Wee Chuan

    Nic: You the one I met today at Coffee Ritual? Go try 5 Senses coffee at Departure Lounge. Ask for Yee or Bruce.

    Towjin: Yes, sure KF, Cheah & I are the stars today and hope this will help introduce us to more coffee lovers and let them know it is possible to taste and prepare great coffee.

  4. Nic

    no, not me. i havent been there before. alright will look for them when i visit. im actually just starting to learn about coffee. i couldnt get much of it since my family sort of void coffee. myself, i love coffee and i got addicted for a period of time before i gotta stop drinking. now im looking to learn to appreciate and differentiate a good cuppa. hope to learn more from u guys.

  5. Wong SW

    Mr Chan!

    I was so tempted to buy you a pack of fresh roasted arabica beans from the Bolaven Plateau.
    This Dutch man who settled here, roasted his own beans right in front of my eyes.
    That’s coz he don’t fancy the local Lao Coffee (30% coffee and other ingredients which includes chocolate) that taste more like mocha. Thus he roast his own beans! They plant loads of coffee in this bolaven plateau in Laos.

    Too bad i have no idea how to send / pass it over to you coz i’m still on my backpacking trip.
    Mebbe when i am towards the end of my trip n i come across another coffee plantation ba.

    I know for sure u won’t like the lao coffee tho. 🙂

    Take care coffee star!

  6. dm3

    Didn’t get to try out Departure Lounge last weekend, as i won F1 Paddock for 2 days and drinkin average 4-5 cappucinos by those fine dining barristers frm Swiss but their coffee is so so, not much time for them to really concentrate in the pull, froth was lousy.
    Well since the paddock pass cost 16k + each day , only good thing is the Mumm champagne n fine dining.

  7. foo

    hi Chan, good day…

    i belive that alot of cafe u did’t visit.
    (coz u dun know a lot of cafe oso can serve good espresso.)

    anyhow, coffee culture in malaysia is improving.

  8. kfchan Post author

    Dear Foo,
    How in the world would you know if I visited a lot or just a few cafe?

    But if you have visited a lot, then share them specifically so that some of us here can go and try and see if what you say is true, if they actually served good espresso.

  9. Ethan

    Hei Chan,
    Probably Mr Foo is one of the cafe owner that you have been given a thumb down.I can sense a subtle hint of bitterness in his post
    Hahahaha

  10. kfchan Post author

    I have given a thumb down to Espressamente before also lah. But here, we are not just willing but VERY happy to give second and even third chance. If any cafe is making positive steps to improve, we will definitely highlight and support.

    In fact, once upon a time ago, Departure Lounge also average only, but they decide to make quality coffee a priority and barista training a commitment… and they are doing a really good job now.

    The problem is that many cafe wanted to have good business but they actually decide in their heart that quality is NOT a priority. They have a mentality of “aiya, cincai lah… can drink ok already lah. What? Pay higher cost for quality coffee and barista training? No need lah”.

    Don’t know how they can expect that to work.

  11. KENNY

    I’ve worked in Melbourne for a couple of year before and since back, one of the thing that i miss is the coffee.. coffee culture there is huge!

    To my disappointment, back here i have not got to taste any coffee close to what the aussies serve.. read bout you and others on thestar metro.. phew, that was a relieve..

    Will give these 2 cafes a try.. keep it coming and i shall share if i come across anything close to what i use to enjoy 🙂

    thanks guys..

  12. ezra limm

    No offence, but even in melbourne, a majority of coffee places simply arent up to scratch. From scalded coffee to coffee that is pre ground and left in the doser for hours… To plain stale beans for places with low turnover. To highschool kids working part time making your coffee instead of trained baristas.

    I applaud kfchan’s attempt to promote espresso in malaysia, but the key ingredient is almost not mentioned. ITS ALL ABOUT THE BEANS PEOPLE. Dont ever let anyone fool you that a machine will make your espresso that much better. Over three weeks post roast and the beans are pretty much stale and unusable for espresso. The most expensive VBM Domobar Super Lever and Mazzer Electronica Model B is going to make shit espresso if you are using supermarket beans. Stop the gadget lust and focus more on the beans!!!

    Kfchan, if you have a stable following, you could follow the footsteps of Andy from coffeesnobs, and start distributing green beans.

    I’ve only spent about RM 5k on Coffee total. And the most improvement to my shots was not the new machine I bought… It was when I started home roasting.

    Personally, I feel an ideal approach to coffee would be:

    1) FRESH BEANS, which means roasting yourself in malaysia.
    2) A grinder, the best you can afford.
    3) French press or something…
    4) Save up for an espresso machine.

    If you dont have #1, forget about #4. You cannot make real espresso with supermarket beans!

  13. Chong Shen

    Hi Ezra,

    That’s a sound point and I do not disagree with you. On the whole, the art of espresso comprises of a multitude of variables, beans, machine, barista, temperature, humidity, to name a few. And for each of those mentioned, you can break them down even further: machine – boiler pressure, temperature fluctuations during the shot pull, cleanliness of the machine etc.. . And if you want to backtrack even further, you can look at the source of the beans, the climate at the area during the fruition of the coffee trees, the acidity at that time and humidity, processing factors. So many variables and even more to be discovered!

    Well, we’d do well to note that KF Chan has other posts as well which he points out other factors, beans included. See below:
    https://kfchan.wordpress.com/2008/07/22/epic-blend-truly-great-espresso/

    Btw, we need an AP to bring green beans into Malaysia. Home-roasting beans would, of course, be a great experience in itself and I’d love to do that some day, provided we overcome the hurdle of the AP. Maybe someone can try sourcing coffee beans locally, like from Sabah where there’re coffee plantations at higher altitudes? Possibly, some enterprising young chap decided to start up with arabica and liberica?

    Regards,
    CS

  14. Wee Chuan

    Hi Ezra,

    Yes, the beans is the no. 1 priority. And of coz, KF, CS & I would love to home roast if the resources can be easily get here. Even then, we have Mister Cheah who is doing DIY roasting now with KK Yoon.

    We always advocate Freshly roasted beans and grinder as the utmost priority. And if someone do not have the money, we will always advice to get something else like an Aeropress to brew the coffee.

    Many people do not understand that many variables are affecting the quality/brew in the cup. So we are trying our best to educate these people through our blogs.

    Go try the 5 Senses coffee. It is definitely not supermarket beans and the taste is great!

  15. kfchan Post author

    Great going guys. You have said almost everything. There is nothing left for me to add lah.

    Note:
    AP = Approved Permit (Malaysia’s Government way of restricting the growth of the coffee industry in Malaysia).

  16. ezra limm

    AP for green beans? You got to be kidding…

    Next time I come back i could probably help u guys bring back some beans if you want. I pay about RM30 per kilo over here.

    Kfchan, mind me asking,.. where do you source your beans?

    ——————————————————
    CS,

    Most decent espresso machines have the temperature stability and pressure to make espresso, and with fresh beans, a decent grinder and decent technique, you’ll be pulling good shots in no time.

    Almost every shot I pull now is acceptable by my standard (after calibration)…thanks to the WDT (weiss distribution technique) and a focus on fresh beans. The shots look like 100% crema and settles down to be about 1/3rd crema in a few minutes.

    —-assuming technique and equipment is adequate—-

    The most important differential appears to be the pressure curve of an espresso machine.

    Recently manual lever machines have come back in fashion. We’re talking ~8s pre-infusion here, with a quick ramp up to full pressure for the rest of the shot. Apparently it makes the nicest espresso ever.

    The Slayer machine is designed to replicate that important aspect of espresso making, in the good ol days before the rotary/UKLA pump became commonplace and baristas actually needed some muscle for each shot. It costs USD$18,000 though 😛

    One day I will own a lever machine. Those things are just beautiful… But it’s a long way off i guess.

  17. kfchan Post author

    Ezra,
    Now you know how much we need to suffer in Malaysia. Almost no chance for small scale roasting.

    Nowadays, I mainly get my beans from Highlander Coffee. Fresh, delicate and within comfortable price range. (Can’t be having Five Senses all the time man.. cost twice as much).

    And about machine… yeah. When you wanna push the bar on espresso, the machine is crucial. I just tried out the Vibiemme Junior Double Boiler at Highlander. Wow! The espresso is exceptional (using the Supremo Blend). The pre-infusion makes a big difference.

  18. Ng Chong Shen

    Ezra,

    Point taken. However, I guess each and everyone’s definition of ‘decent’ is different. 🙂

    I’m working with a Silvia and Rocky, a typical start-up combo and I’m happy to say they’re serving me well. But, it’s worth mentioning that she’s as finicky as a woman. Lol.

    Regards,
    CS

  19. Kelvin

    Wondered if anyone tried coffee from Seattle’s Best Coffee (SBC)?

    Around year 2000 – 2003 they were based in Sunway Pyramid (just outside the main entrance). Group of my friend who swore by Starbucks coffee (which is overrated) tried SBC one day and never turned back.

    Apparently the barista’s there were trained to only serve good shots/drinks and as long as they feel a shot isn’t up to standard, they must throw it away and remake the drink. In my disbelieve, went to order and find out from them what determines a good coffee? They gave me a complimentary latte (small of course), and told me to drink it without adding anything and it should taste slightly creamy, subtle sweetness, no bitterness of coffee which makes you go eeww and true enough, that latte was the best ever. Sad to say they are no longer in Malaysia due to parent company closing down the branches as they couldn’t compete with Starbucks because of the ‘popularity’ factor. I’ve never had another latte from Starbucks ever since (because they re-steam the milk over and over again without washing the pitcher and its just unhealthy to drink over steamed milk!!)

    Whenever I patronize SBC, no matter how busy they were, they timed their shots and used new pitchers for every drink they pull to ensure perfection of a coffee. As they make the drinks the baristas even explain to you the reason they do it that way and apologize for being slow (hey i’m there for a good coffee, i want you to do it well and nice, not rush for business and give me crap drinks lol)… Being a frequent patron, I’ve learn how to make latte’s and cap’s just from going SBC thanks to the baristas effort to explain.

  20. Foo

    Hi Chan,

    Last time I was Love this blog and always visit.
    The coffee lover will share their opinion and experience.
    And now i was Found that the blog no only talking about coffee but is more on business…….
    i’m espresso lover and always try espresso in difference cafe..
    A lot of cafe can serve good espresso IN MALAYSIA but i dun mention coz….. PROMOTION ( u know what i mean )

    i not agree that you mention the freshness of the bean….
    the way to keep or store the coffee bean is much, much important than the roated date.
    For your information, normaly coffee bean will keep a few day to blance the taste after roast . NOT SELL THE BEAN IMMEDIATELY, So please forget the roasted date

    Wee Chuan’
    The cafe and bean what u mention that I try already.
    Did you love it????
    It only sour, acidity and no other taste……….
    please ENJOY YOURSELF……

  21. steven

    Whoever one may be, whoever one may be from, tastes and opinions differ and generally formed as per one’s experience and exposure. Every individual has a different level of understanding. Some like their steaks rare, some well done and some medium. To each his own, as the saying goes. If one enjoys or prefers what one does, be it!!! Live in peace and forums are for all to air and share their views and I do respect each individual’s viewpoints although we have our personal preferences. But as far as freshness of beans is concerned, Foo, I beg to differ. Its very obvious that your understanding of beans is at opposite poles from mine. Well Chan, it take all kinds to make the world go round. What a “colourful” world. Hahahahahah!!!!!

  22. kfchan Post author

    Dear Foo,

    It has indeed been a difficult balance between business and pleasure.
    But I believe it has been quite well balance. Alas, it is quite impossible to sustain passion when there is zero business. Not everyone is rich and can spend time on fun and not work right?

    On the other hand, if you encounter many cafe in Malaysia that serves good espresso, you SHOULD mentioned them. How are they going to be encouraged to do a good job when nobody knows that they did a good job. Nothing wrong with PROMOTION. All the cafes that I promote because they served me good coffee. They didn’t pay me a single cent. I would wish they do actually 😀

    Taste is of course very subjective. While some people like the BURNT taste of traditional kopi and I would not for once says you should not drink what your senses like. Though most who says they like the traditional burnt kopi also finds them horrible when drank plain without sugar and milk.

    In this blog, we try to expose fellow coffee lovers to experience higher quality coffee that when drank plain are still pleasant. Not just bitterness but with complexity of taste.

    Espresso is a very delicate matter. Good espresso can turned into bad espresso just because of a slight mis-tamp, slight mis-dosage, slight mistake in grinder settings, temperature and etc. A sour espresso is bad. But higher acidity espresso can be good if well prepared. I have taste many times the sweetness, flora and fruity taste in those well made espresso. And while our tongue needs to be “educated” in identifying those different sensation, many of us are unable to experience them. It is a learning process and will take time.

    But however good it may be, espresso is not the EVERYTHING in coffee. Some just don’t like espresso and IT IS OK. Many like rice but not everyone must like Japanese rice even though I consider them to be of higher quality. Good coffee roasted properly and fresh can taste REALLY GREAT via syphon, drip, aeropress, moka pot, french press and etc.

    Now, matter of freshness.
    While you are right that beans freshly roasted need to be RESTED for the flavour to mature, it was only for a matter of days. NOT WEEKS.

    I can categorically state that FRESHNESS is of paramount important. Storage is secondary but still crucial. Only those who CANNOT offer fresh roasted beans will claim that storage is more important than roast-date.

  23. ezra limm

    Steven brings up a good point. I have to clarify that the absolute requirement for fresh (< 3 weeks post roast) beans is most applicable to espresso. As a general rule, the darker the roast, the less the impact of freshness especially if the coffee is going to be made using a plunger.

    For example, standard malaysian kopi; a french roasted low grade robusta typically flavoured with (!) margarine/planta does actually taste pretty good. Individually (aluminium lined) sealed preground sachets keep for months or even years without losing their flavour.

    Such a method wouldnt work for espresso because ground coffee "dies" and loses it's ability to expand when infused – a crucial factor in espresso extraction.

    I agree with Kfchan; espresso is not the be all end all of coffee. It’s just another way of making coffee. Half the coffee I drink is instant *shock horror*. But if youre talking about brewed coffee, espresso is probably the best way to taste coffee oils that would otherwise be left out of a normal brew. All brewed coffee (syphon, moka, drip, plunger, espresso) tastes better if the coffee is fresher with no exceptions. After a month or so, flavours deteriorate very rapidly as volatile aromatic oils disappear! Yes, “disappear”. Im not kidding… even with heat sealed aluminium lined bags (i’ve experimented), coffee will “die” after about a month. This does not apply so much to very dark roasts like those used in malaysian kopi, or most french roasts for that matter – which is why they tend to taste the same. Burnt dark coffee.

    That over-roasted, stale flavour profile is what most people have come to associate with coffee. And I got to say it’s not half bad. Ok it’s never going to be as good as freshly roasted coffee, but it’s not terrible.

    Foo, if you have any experience making real espresso you will know how impossible it is to make a good cup that tastes good without milk/sugar/water (pure espresso) if your beans are over a month post roast. You can get away drowning terrible espresso with milk and calling it a latte … but it wont be anything like a properly made latte.

    To be fair, I’ve rarely tasted properly made espresso in the commercial scene – even in Melbourne with a mature coffee market. Gloria Jeans and Starbucks dont make espresso properly and drown their espresso in milk and cream – when was the last time you saw somebody enjoy a short black / espresso from those outlets?

    The flavour profile from most commercial establishments is that of stale preground coffee improperly made with a moka pot (read: overly fast extraction with stale beans). They put concentrated stale coffee into their lattes, not espresso….despite using espresso machines.

  24. Steven

    Hi Chan, I’ve no qualms that you’re mixing passion, pleasure as business. Personally I’d prefer a ‘knowledgeable’ trader. At least you know what you are selling and as a general rule, every merchant will say their products are the Best; likewise manufacturers. Even as an employee, one will claimed that his/her services is the Best. Will we tell our bosses that “I’m a lousy worker and you don’t have to pay me so much”. Will we???
    The rest is left to be seen!
    Last but not least, Chan, your sharing is much appreciated!! Saves me plenty of time; I don’t have the luxury of time dropping by every joint to test their coffee. Keep it up! Normally I ignore trolls. 🙂

  25. foo

    hahaha………
    i belive that u all misunderstanding what i mention before….
    Ezra, roasted date and the bean freshness is totally difference….
    oxygen is surroundings the world…..
    Coffee aroma will gone is calculate by second NOT DAY OR MONTH……
    Freshly roasted bean!! How fast you want to finish it???
    10g powder for 1 cup coffee……
    250g bean for 25 cups……
    1 day you drink 25 cups coffee or espresso???
    PROPERLY STORAGE is MORE IMPROTANT THAN THE ROASTED DATE…

    CHAN,
    your reply is really very funny…..

    “difficult balance between business and pleasure ;They didn’t pay me a single cent”

    “A sour espresso is bad ; higher acidity espresso can be good”

    is nothing wrong if you do PROMOTION or THEY PAY YOU “MANY” CENT..

    PLEASE DON’T BECAUSE OF “BUSINESS” THEN TRY TO MAKE PEOPLE AS A FOOL..

    espresso is not the all
    “BUT THIS PAGE IS “REALLY GOOD “ESPRESSO” AT MALAYSIA”

    LATTE means MILK

    ESPRESSO + MILK is CAFE LATTE

  26. kfchan Post author

    “i belive that u all misunderstanding what i mention before….”
    If ALL OF US mis-understood you, this most likely means that you capability to put across your ideas is questionable.

    And Foo, after all these talk, you have yet to suggest what storing methods is better then knowing the roast-date?

    Even freshly roasted coffee need to be properly stored. Nobody says you go and put fresh roasted beans under the sun and let rain wash over them.

    We store them in cool, dark and dry place. We try if possible to put it in air-tight container and even attempt to pump put the oxygen too.

    A properly stored fresh roasted coffee beans can last up till 1 month from roasting though by then the deterioration process has increased. I try not to be too picky… even tolerated 6 weeks old beans. Some among us have a lower threshold (you know who you are).

    And who says you need to drink 25 cups a day to enjoy fresh roasted coffee? My 250g can last me 2 weeks and it is still good.

    “PLEASE DON’T BECAUSE OF “BUSINESS” THEN TRY TO MAKE PEOPLE AS A FOOL..”
    Must be your ideas not coming across properly again. Why would promoting good cafe serving good coffee be “TRY TO MAKE PEOPLE AS A FOOL”???

    I wonder if we remember the fable “Sour Grapes” http://www.storyit.com/Classics/Stories/sourgrapes.htm

    I wonder if there is any similarity when someone insist freshness in coffee is NOT AS important.

  27. ezra limm

    Foo, how big are your cups? Personally I dont think there is any rule to how much coffee goes into an ideal cup (my standard cup is a 180ml latte glass). I typically use around 10g of coffee in each shot.

    I have been roasting my own coffee for two years now and I speak with confidence when I say that no matter how you store your coffee, beans will ‘die’ quite quickly after a month. I also own a heat sealer (impulse sealer) and foil bags with one way valves. Despite proper airtight light proof storage, beans degas and deteriorate very quickly after one month. It will no longer develop proper crema and it’s a bit harder to dose on an espresso machine as the grounds dont expand properly when infused.

    After a month, only very dark roasted coffee (over roasted for espresso IMO) will still taste reasonably good if it were stored airtight. This is what malaysian consumers are used to. The packets of “kopi” you buy from brands you find in malaysian supermarkets are roasted this way. Dark roasted robusta. As they are preground, they will already be semi-stale when the packet is opened…though being in foil lined packs some freshness remains and it beats blocks of preground coffee any day.

    Preground coffee goes stale about 5 minutes after being exposed to air. All that fuss about grinding on demand is for this very reason. Dont believe me? Get some fresh <1month post roast coffee and grind it. Wait five minutes then grind again. Smell the freshly ground coffee and the one that was grounded 5 minutes ago. Tell the difference? Now try pulling a shot with it. One will pull faster than the other – the same thing that happens when you use stale beans.

    I typically roast in 200g batches. It lasts me for a month quite well. It's only really 15 shots of coffee as 5 shots will be for calibration.

  28. ezra limm

    btw foo, there is nothing wrong with chen’s comment: “A sour espresso is bad ; higher acidity espresso can be good”

    Sourness and acidity are two different things when you talk about coffee. Acidity, also known as “brightness” is not the same as sourness. I know in science you learn that acidity is about pH and whatnot, but in coffee it is really about espresso tingles the palate and has no correlation to pH or true acidity. It is coffee tasting nomenclature and the cause of some confusion sometimes among coffee enthusiast circles.

  29. XC Ting

    hai All, interested on this Topic.
    i have a small business cafe in small town and i useing xx blend coffee bean.( the packing is silver pack,no name)
    the saleman always told me that his coffee bean fresh and list out the roasted date (use pen to write), but the coffee taste is not averge.
    i try before those packing in tin is more better. i want to change the coffee bean supplyer but those tin packing is expensive like.
    illy,lavazza,bristot.
    the bean is fresh even though the roast date is over few month.
    so i agree what foo say.
    thanks for you all if any idea!!

  30. kfchan Post author

    Dear XC,

    There are a few questions that you need to consider.
    1. Did the salesman bullshit you about the roast-date?
    2. How long from the roast-date to the time you use the beans.
    3. Regardless of how fresh coffee is, if the beans itself are of low quality and the roasting technique is poor, the coffee is going to be lousy.

    Don’t mean to offend you, but many unscrupulous coffee company paddle their cheap lousy beans to small towns. They think small town people don’t know much, and just passed on cheap stuff.

    One factor we seldom mentioned here is roasting technique and technology. Even though many of us criticize companies like illy and lavazza for not offering fresher beans, you cannot deny that their roasting technique and technology is high.

    Many of the locally source, unknown roasters …. they actually roast them in a WOK. In fact, even in KL, there are some supplier who pushed horribly roasted beans in a nicely packed one-way-valve bag. In fact they were quite fresh, but with the cheap lousy beans and cincai-roasting technique, the coffee is just BADDDD.

    The debate between roast-date or storage/packing methods, take for granted that the origin of the beans and roasting technique is of good quality to begin with.

  31. ezra limm

    I’ll take fresh coffee roasted in a wok, over an open fire over stale beans from the supermarket any day. Freshness is of utmost importance for espresso and this cannot be understated. I roast my coffee in a fluid air bed popcorn popper and it beats the shit out of supermarket beans simply because they are fresh.

    Quick note about the illy tins: This is the one brand of coffee that actually tastes good from the supermarket. HOWEVER the technology used to keep the beans fresh (nitrogen flushing) is not perfect and the beans degas and go stale very very quickly after opening the tin. Look to finish an illy tin within a week. Good crema up to day 3. After that the beans ‘die’ and dont even produce good crema anymore. By a week after opening the tin the beans are stale. Preground illy tins? Well use them up within the hour after opening =)

    Lavazza and all the others packed in valved bags are crap and are not suitable for espresso. Moka pot or plunger maybe, but not espresso. The beans are stale and you will be making what I would describe as strong drip or moka pot coffee…even if you’re using a commercial espresso machine….because the beans cant generate proper resistance by expanding when infused. You will never make an acceptable espresso (tastes good drunk straight!) with those beans as they were simply roasted too long ago!

    Only espresso from fresh <1mth post roast beans will drip like heavy cream and be tasty taken straight without milk. Note the consistency of the espresso in the video. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BKM3YVlLcnc

    kfchan, to be fair, many smaller gourmet roasters do in fact label roast dates by hand…

  32. kfchan Post author

    Ezra,

    “kfchan, to be fair, many smaller gourmet roasters do in fact label roast dates by hand…”

    And to be fair 😀 we are talking about Roasters in Malaysia (hardly the gourmet type).. hahaha.
    Also, using a wok and open fire to roast really cheap robusta and liberica, I doubt they are any good. Better than stale coffee, sure… but not really worth drinking. I rather have nescafe 🙂

  33. zhuzhu

    HI everyone”

    Just to share some idea about if u having your own roasted coffee!
    I dont know? Please correct me if im wrong.
    Is that we can get a very nice and consistence green bean on every batch for us to roast and can get the same taste for every cup????
    Is that we have to change the name of the batch? If cant get the same taste as last batch!
    Or we no need to care about the consistency of the green bean????
    Or we just need a good roaster and freshly roasted bean, that is more important than the coffee flavor consistency?????
    Yes. Freshly roasted bean can giving us a very thick crema. But thick crema doesn’t means everything.
    How long can it last for a fresh roast coffee bean??? Is it can last longer than the supermarket bean??? Maybe few days longer or lesser or same?

  34. Jackie Teo

    Hi all,

    Since all of us here have a common interest…coffee yeah…
    Just to share with you guys something on Espresso drinking in Melaka.

    If you guys happens to come down to Melaka and thinking to have a good Espresso… Cxxxxe Bxxn or Stxx Bxxks serve bad coffee..from my experience….

    The New AEON Jusco at Perringit, CB & TL double shot espresso taste like our apek kopitiam Kopi-o kau kau

    Makotah Parade Bucks…gaya ada…mutu tak de…espresso will burn your tongue and they claim thats the perfect temp… tapi…same like kopi-o kau juga..

    The only place i tried the better one are at the Melaka Raya opposite Pure Bar / next to Office Bar / behind Standard Chartered Bank..the Khaki Coffee…

    They roast their own beans too..
    Hope this cafe will add another place to have good espresso to you guys.

    cheers

  35. Barry

    I tried Departure Lounge cafe the other day, and that was certainly the best espresso that I have tasted in Malaysia before by quite some distance. Nice crema, and delicious taste of the coffee was strong on the taste buds. Thanks to the people here for the tip!

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