HomeRoast Digest


Topic: AT LAST The God Shot??? (57 lines)
1) From: Tonya Connell
As seen on Fortune's web site
AT LAST
The God Shot
The search is over: Nicholas Stein has found the world's best cup of coffee.
FORTUNE
Thursday, January 9, 2003
By Nicholas Stein
One hundred miles east of Venice, the sleepy port of Trieste is home to much
of Italy's coffee trade--including gourmet roaster Illy, which sells beans
to cafes and restaurants around the globe. But frustrated with the
inconsistent preparation and presentation of his company's product,
third-generation CEO Andrea Illy has taken matters into his own hands. Last
fall he launched the "Illy bar concept," a blueprint for the ideal espresso
bar.
Aspiring owners can license the concept for free, as long as they agree to
buy coffee exclusively from Illy for five years. In exchange, they get sleek
interiors designed by renowned architects, expert barista training, and
access to the knowledge the Illys have compiled during 70 years in the
business.
Espresso is the souffle of beverages, notoriously difficult to produce with
even the best raw material. The perfect shot begins with quality beans,
ground to a precise consistency, which changes depending upon the atmosphere
and humidity. If the grind is too coarse or the coffee not packed tightly
enough, the water fails to extract enough body and flavor--leaving a watery,
acidic brew. If the beans are ground too finely or packed too tightly, the
water clogs and the coffee burns, bitter and harsh.
Next, the machine must generate sufficient pressure (nine bars) while
keeping the water temperature between 90? and 92? Celsius. Old stovetop
espresso makers didn't separate the steam from the heat source, leading to
burned coffee. In 1935, Andrea's grandfather patented the modern espresso
machine, which separates the two. Exactly one milliliter of coffee should
flow through the machine each second, leaving 30 milliliters of liquid in
the ideal 30-second extraction period.
At Barviadelletorri in Trieste, the first of the concept bars to open (there
are plans for 20 more this year), all these disparate elements come together
in what connoisseurs call the "God shot." The aroma is intoxicating. The
crema--the caramel-colored top layer of emulsified oils--is dark and
luxuriant. The taste deserves terms--floral, complex--reserved for wine.
Illy says that espresso stays on your tongue for 20 minutes. Just try
waiting that long before ordering another.
Barviadelletorri
Via delle Torri 3
Trieste, Italy
011-39-40-765251
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