September 13, 2006

ESE Review: Aloha Island 100% Kona ESE Espresso Pods

So for about the last couple of weeks we have been enjoying the rich 100% Kona ESE Espresso pods from Aloha Island. Aloha Island Coffee Company is a high quality minded coffee company that farms in one of the most well known coffee growing areas in the world. The Kona coast, for anyone who has been there is a dream come true as far as beauty goes; the rough beauty of the lava fields stretch up to the green fields on the gently sloping sides of the volcano. We have been using both the regular 100 % Kona ESE espresso pods and the Decaf 100% Kona ESE Espresso Pods, and will discuss both here.

These ESE Espresso pods are made to be used in popular makers like the Breville Café Roma, the Krups XP4050and the Hamilton Beach 40729 espresso machines; all have the ability to use ESE Espresso pods.

If you have a Single Serve Coffee maker that takes larger pods than ESE pods, check out the review covering several Aloha Island pods for those brewers at our sister site:

Both the Decaf and the regular pods have a wonderfully enticing aroma out of the pouch with a complex and layered scent of toffee and spice. While the coffee is roasted dark, the lighter notes are not lost in the aroma before you put the pod in the brewer.
The Regular 100% Kona ESE Espresso Pods produce a strong brew that is unmistakably espresso with a good flavor, strong body and a medium acidity. The darker roast I more apparent here and it will definitely stand up to a latte. The aroma carries through and gives you some layered effects on top of the dark roasted flavor, which I think is very inviting and unusual. Despite being 100% Arabica, which doesn’t offer all the crèma capabilities of a Robusta, the Aloha Island serves up a nice layer of crèma, not gobs and gobs, but plenty to be authentic. No issues here. The picture here is of the regular ESE pods. The Decaf produces the same.
The Decaf 100% Kona ESE Espresso Pods also produce a strong brew that stands up on its own and doesn’t shy away just because it’s a decaf. It too can stand up to a latte and has an unmistakably espresso fingerprint. The acidity is a bit more on the mild side, but not to a fault; I like it where it is. It helps bring out some of the top notes that Kona can give you in a regular cup of coffee.

Some people say that dark roasting a really fine bean is a waste of its complexity and a waste of its character. I don’t think that’s true here; the Aloha Island 100% Kona Espresso retains some of that complexity without shrinking from its duties as an espresso.

Both the Regular and Decaf 100% Kona ESE Espresso Pods are available at the Aloha Island e-store at their website - Aloha Island Coffee or at Amazon.

Read More in: ESE Espresso Pod Reviews

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Posted by Scott Martin at September 13, 2006 8:15 AM
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