Best Coffee Beans for Espresso Machines: Enjoy It Like at a Coffee Store

Finding the best coffee beans for an espresso machine is a subjective matter. The choice of the mixture is the toughest part because people’s tastes are not always the same.

Don’t be alarmed, but you will deal with 60 species of coffee plants. First, start with the 4 best coffee varieties on the market, such as Coffea Arabica, Coffea Robusta, Coffea Liberica, and Coffea Excelsa.

We can find either Arabica or Robusta in plain sight on any supermarket’s shelves as they grow in almost all continents, starting from America to Asia passing through Africa.

We have collected the 10 best coffee beans currently on the market to help you with this choice. They are top-notch regarding the taste, quality, and reasonable price.

Best Coffee Beans for Espresso – Quick Comparison

Product imagesProduct nameEditor's ratingPrice
Koffee Kult4.9

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Lavazza Super Crema4.8

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Kicking Horse Coffee4.8

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Coffee Bean Direct4.7

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Café de Loja4.6

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Ranking of 10 Best Coffee Beans Reviews

Many brands offer different coffee bean tastes and flavors. Here is our selection of the 10 best of them to discover.

#1 – Kicking Horse: Best Value for Money

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Kicking Horse beans is one of the best choices in terms of value for money. This product comes at such a profitable cost for remarkably delicious taste.

Most customers appreciate this product for its enveloping, intense taste, and high creaminess. It leaves a slightly sweet aftertaste on the palate that lasts for a long time after a single sip.

In short, it is a coffee package that offers flavor comparable to that of many bars at professional vendors. However, some customers claim that the quality of each package is not consistent.

To ensure that it does not lose its characteristic aroma over time and preserve its quality, we recommend keeping it inside an airtight plastic container and possibly in the refrigerator.

Pros

  • Large capacity
  • Reasonable price
  • Intense flavor
  • Very creamy
  • Sweet aftertaste

Con

  • Inconsistent quality

#2 – Lavazza Super Crema Whole: Best for Limited Budget

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Lavazza is one of the most popular producers in Italy. But it is not popular with premium coffee lovers who eventually turn to a higher-end product.

We recommend this unit to those who seek coffee beans purely for domestic use. We love this product for two major reasons.

The first reason is that it is one of the cheapest solutions on the market. And the second is for its delicate aroma as the bean is composed of a 100% Arabica blend.

Overall, its gentler flavor can be a valid alternative if you are not fond of the coffee’s bitter taste.

However, be careful with impurities in the package, such as rocks. The reason may come from the poor-quality packaging process.

Pros

  • Affordable price
  • Reliable Italian producer
  • Delicate aroma
  • 100% Arabica blend

Con

  • Imperfect packaging process

#3 – Koffee Kult Dark Roasted: Best Creaminess

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As we have mentioned earlier, the Arabica blend is especially appreciated because it does not leave a bitter aftertaste. Besides, it has a more delicate flavor than other blends.

Specifically, these Koffee Kult coffee beans are dense and full-bodied with an excellent creaminess and consistency.

It is a coffee with a round taste and a special touch – the presence of cocoa notes. From the moment of opening the package to the grinding process, a captivating scent will spread in your home.

The value for money is also excellent. However, some clients praise the superb taste but do not love the beans’ dryness.

Pros

  • Excellent creaminess
  • High consistency
  • Round taste
  • Special touch of cocoa notes

Con

  • Rather dry beans

#4 – Pellini No.82 Vivace Roasted: Best Full-Bodied Taste

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The Pellini No.82 were born from the historical passion for roasting of the Veronese’s company.

Over the years, Pellini has built a solid reputation and reliable customer support. We define this coffee bean as an espresso bar.

It is already roasted with a full-bodied taste. Customers who love an intense but not excessively bitter flavor will fall in love with this product. The package is available to use without sugar and sweetener.

As the package suggests, it has an excellent creaminess. We rank it on top as its full-bodied flavor is exactly as what we can expect in a coffee shop. The only flaw worth mentioning is the high price. 

Pros

  • Full-bodied taste
  • Organic coffee bean
  • Tasty with no sugar and sweetener
  • Excellent creaminess

Con

  • Unreasonable price-quantity ratio

#5 – Café de Loja Specialty: Best Bitter Taste

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The beans from Café de Loja are creamy at the right point. The finishing beans come with good elasticity and inviting color. The flavor is decisive, intense but balanced with a light cocoa note.

It peeps out during the tasting, and its aroma is undoubtedly mesmerizing. This product is the best choice if you love a strong coffee with a bitter aftertaste.

However, for coffee novices, it can be unpleasant in the mouth at the first try. For an optimal extraction of these coffee beans, it is advisable to pay attention to the outside temperature.

If it is hot outside, you must reduce the coffee machine’s heating time to get an exceptional result. For the cold season, increase the heat but pay attention not to destroy the beans’ overall flavor.

Pros

  • Intensive and balanced flavor
  • Perfect bitterness level
  • Premium ingredients
  • Light cocoa notes

Con

  • Require careful heat measurement

#6 – CoffeeBean Espresso Whole Beans: Best for Italian Espresso

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The story of CoffeeBean is the story of Roasted Espresso. This amazing unit’s dominant theme is spreading all the Italian Roast Espresso’s warmth in a single taste.

With a price slightly higher than the average, you will receive back a more full-bodied and tastier result. Especially, we love that the coffee bean is slightly caramelized. The taste is soft and not very persistent.

The creaminess is also pleasant. These beans are perhaps the ones that can better render the decisive roasting typical of Italian espresso. It is what the entire world loves about Italian coffee.

With each sip, you can bite into a piece of Italy’s finest coffee culture. For quintessential Italian espresso, CoffeeBean product is a blend of high-value Robusta and Arabica.

This blend gets its amazing quality from a slow roasting in drums. The resulting full-bodied taste is suitable for a ristretto if you use an automatic or manual espresso machine.

Pros

  • Full-bodied design
  • Specially caramelized beans
  • Soft and non-persistent taste
  • Pleasant creaminess

Con

  • Expensive

#7 – Caffe Appassionato Espresso Roast Whole Beans: Best for All Taste

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These coffee beans’ flavor is decisive but not too strong. We recommend it, especially if you are a lover of Italian coffee that leaves a sweet and nutty aftertaste on the palate, but not bitter.

It differs from Italian espresso as it is much less full-bodied. The product is perfect for those used to drinking coffee without sugar or looking for a less pungent flavor than usual.

Regardless, people who are used to an intense coffee may not favor this pick. The Caffe Appassionato beans have a unique taste because of the flavors of the South American lands on which the coffee beans grow. 

Likewise, having been roasted in Turin gives this Arabica coffee a creamy texture that recalls Italian espresso’s authenticity. A perfect cup of “perfetto espresso” is a cup prepared with an automatic espresso machine.

Pros

  • Sweet and nutty aftertaste
  • No bitter taste
  • No sugar
  • Quality beans from South America and Turin

Con

  • Bland taste for some people

#8 – Nicoletti Espresso Roast Beans: Best for Salento Coffee

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For the most demanding palates, here are the high-quality, strong, and gritty Nicoletti coffee beans. They are suitable for preparing the famous Salento coffee with ice and almond syrup.

It has nothing to envy to the Nicoletti company as they offer an appreciable and artisanal product. Although the taste is strong, it is never excessive but always well-balanced and pleasant.

The texture is excellent, as a delicious foam will form on the surface. From our perspective, the Nicoletti beans are a valid product that enhances Salento coffee’s true flavors.

This umpteenth taste journey will take you to South America with its grand cru beans from Brazil, one of the best on the market. 

These coffee beans are qualified as a grand cru because they were cultivated in the Brazilian hills’ humid climate. This work gives the bean a delicate flavor marked by notes of hazelnut and almond.

Only an automatic grain machine could bring out both subtle and enveloping voluptuousness of its taste.

Pros

  • Premium ingredients
  • Artisanal finishing product
  • Non-excessive taste
  • Well-balanced and pleasant flavor

Con

  • Weak flavor for some people

#9 – Blackwelder Arabica Espresso – Best for Organic Coffee

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Through this coffee, Blackwelder tells a story. It is the story of organic coffee grown between 0.62 and 1.12 miles above sea level.

Thanks to its South American influences, Blackwelder beans have the Arabica flavor character that draws its flavors from the land, climate, and altitude.

Their tangy taste, reminiscent of the flavor, comes in this product thanks to a slow maturation regarding nature. Blackwelder beans take advantage of the local strength to create the coffee’s thickness and liveliness in your mouth.

Beyond the taste, you will encourage the producers’ initiative each time you drink a coffee cup. They are unarguably the best organic coffee beans.

Pros

  • Premium and organic ingredients
  • 100% safe for health
  • Unique taste

Con

  • Very bitter

#10 – Verena Street Espresso Beans: Best for Traditional Coffee

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Verena Street is in pure respect for traditional Italian roasting techniques. The Italian roast brings out more of the full-bodied flavor of this Arabica-dominant coffee.

It is what makes this brand famous for the flavor roaster technique. Many customers called this product the title of best traditional coffee bean. You can feel the African, Asian, and South American influences in the taste.

The coffee beans are gently processed with a traditional filter machine after being ground to enjoy this tasty blend to the maximum. Their fruity taste invites you for a morning tasting.

Pros

  • Enhances traditional flavor
  • Suitable for all people
  • Full-bodied flavor

Con

  • High price

What Defines A Great Espresso Bean?

Italy invented and contributed to the monumental history of espresso. The espresso beans have become an inseparable part of the world’s drinking culture. Let’s see what defines the quality of espresso beans!

Espresso Beans Vs. Regular Coffee Beans. Is There A Difference?

Espresso is coffee, but coffee does not have to be espresso. It is the simplest difference between these two drinks, in which they both start from the same source of coffee beans.

The key difference between espresso beans and coffee beans is how they are prepared. First, let’s start with when you make espresso without an espresso exclusive machine. Here, we are referring to a traditional Italian coffee machine. 

There are many ways to make espresso, but using an espresso machine is the most popular means to make this drink everyone has heard of and loved.

Espresso is a short, pure coffee shot prepared under high water pressure. We brew the entire espresso brewing process for 22 to 30 seconds, producing 1.01442 oz of pure black coffee.

It is difficult to give a concrete time measurement, but you must reach an optimal limit to ensure that any blended coffee or single coffee has the best-extracted flavors and shades.

The espresso beans contain a lot of oil, sugar, and a slightly complicated taste. Most first-time espresso drinkers may not be used to the espresso’s richness.

In brief, coffee can be with or without espresso. Most specialty coffee drinks, such as lattes, cappuccinos, and macchiato use espresso as a base ingredient.

Thus, you do not necessarily need an espresso machine or go to coffee shops to drink this delicious espresso shot.

Single-Origin Or Espresso Blend?

When we talk about single-origin, we refer to a coffee from a specific geographical area of a state, region, or specific area. Therefore, the term is not synonymous with quality or higher cost.

It simply indicates the raw material’s origin. We often find it combined with the name Kenya, Ethiopia, and Colombia. They are countries where hundreds of different producers operate.

Each country uses different ways of working, with the consequence of obtaining different products. The blend is the combination of several coffees, thus a mix of the different single-origins to get a specific organoleptic profile.

Informally, we often hear about 50/50, 60/40, and 90/10. These proportions show nothing but the percentages of Arabica and Robusta in the blend, respectively.

As a natural product, coffee is subject to many variables. Hence, the proportion can vary throughout the year. It is uncertain that the same coffee yields the same way in different crops.

The obvious consequence is calibrating the proportions each time to get the same organoleptic profile.

Espresso Beans And Coffee Growing Regions

Most Robusta coffee is grown more in West and Central Africa, Southeast Asia, and Brazil. Meanwhile, Arabica coffee is found in Asia, Latin America, East Africa, or the Arabian Peninsula.

As can be understood from the name given to it, Robusta is a much more resistant coffee variety than Arabica.

During the twentieth century, its cultivation increased exponentially following the attack and consequent ruin of the Arabica coffee plants between 1869 and 1920 in Sri Lanka, the Philippines, Java, and Malaysia.

The two types of beans on the market, used in the production of the most famous blends, such as espresso, have different organoleptic characteristics.

The first is Arabica beans. They are more elongated and have a more delicate flavor. Instead, Robusta beans show a more rounded shape and a more bitter and full-bodied flavor on the tongue.

Coffee is a traveler without borders. Once they are produced, they travel miles, reach our tables, and delight us with their explicit and bitter tastes. 

Differences in taste, aroma, and acidity can distinguish coffee beans from different countries and regions.

The difference in taste depends on not only the area where the coffee is grown but also the varieties and how it is processed. There are several famous coffee growing regions like Colombian, Java, and Kona.

Tips For Enjoying Espresso Beans

Here are the 3 most basic tips for enjoying a premium cup of espresso.

Look at the crema for a clue to your grind.

We distinguish espresso from other hand-brewed coffees. Not only because of the technical complexity but also by a thick layer of fine foam, also known as Crema, covering the surface.

It is the unique sensory element of the espresso. Overall, crema is only about 1/3 of the cup and the most attractive sensory aspect of a traditional espresso cup. But the scientific explanation of crema is also extremely scarce.

Coffee experts use crema to test the espresso extract’s quality. Specifically, the crema shows if all the parameters that influence the extraction process, including degassing time, grandness, and pressure mechanism, are correct when extracting a cup.

Most consumers like a nice layer of crema on the cup. Some will stir it into the cup with a spoon while some may rotate the cup to save the crema for the last sip of coffee.

All the sensory elements obtained from the crema image are used to create an espresso cup’s flavor expectation with a balance of desirable flavor.

Learn to tamp properly.

The tamping operation’s primary job is to remove excess space and tighten the ground coffee in the basket. You must create a uniform resistance across the total mass of powder before exerting high pressure from the machine.

First, it is important to know that the compressive force when tamping depends on many factors, including the bean’s quality, the ground coffee’s fineness, and the coffee’s freshness.

However, the problem of compressive force when tamping still occurs. This problem is not worth considering because of the espresso machine’s 9-bar pressure. We will have a strong compression force.

Be sure to pre-infuse your espresso.

Pre-infusion is a commonly used term in the making of espresso with coffee machines and only on coffee makers. This high-end technology refers to soaking the ground coffee in a filter before extraction.

The purpose is to ensure that the water evenly penetrates. You can extract all the essence and flavor of the coffee into the cup.

Only machines with reduced pressure valve systems and E61 steel clusters can perform pre-infusion, meaning they only exist on high-end professional machines.

Frequently Asked Questions about Coffee Beans

Coffee draws its strength from its incomparable flavor. However, each flavor must tell a story, invite you on a journey – nothing like good coffee beans to give you a unique experience with every sip.

What coffee beans does Starbucks use for espresso?

Starbucks Espresso Roast Coffee Beans comes with rich caramel notes. The flavor is intensive with the slight sweetness from caramel.

If you want to enjoy a cup of Starbuck espresso without leaving home, this product is worth considering.

Can you use any type of coffee bean for espresso?

Better not. We advise you to avoid this thing for a simple reason. If you use ground coffee for espresso like the Super Blend in the mocha, you will savor an excessively bitter and slightly scorched espresso.

It transforms the pleasure of the daily cup into an unpleasant experience. Why does it happen? It relates to the major reason for the coffee grinding process.

What coffee does McDonald’s use?

The answer is very simple, from the outskirts of Milan. More precisely, it is from the Ottolina roasting company. Every year, it supplies the fast-food chain with about 520000 lbs of precious roasted beans.

The company was founded in 1948 with a small shop in Via Piero Della Francesca. They then moved to its current headquarters in Chicago, where it produces 160000 lbs of coffee every month.

Why is Starbucks coffee so bitter?

Starbucks is brewed with Robusta coffee beans that are more bitter, tastier, and contain a higher caffeine content than Arabica beans.

What coffee beans does Starbucks use for lattes?

The combination of Starbuck lattes is espresso, steamed milk, and milk foam. As mentioned above, the Starbucks Espresso Roast Coffee Beans is available in all Starbucks stores globally.

What is the best coffee bean?

Kicking Horse beans is our best choice on this list, thanks to the mildly sweet aftertaste and high value for money. The beans perfectly combine creamy but intensive tastes.

How much should I pay for coffee beans?

On the current market, a pack of up to 2 pounds of coffee may cost from $25 to $50. The price depends on the brand recognition, premium quality, and eye-catching advertising.

Does Starbucks use real coffee?

In the fiscal, Starbucks purchased over 428 million pounds of coffee. 86% of the coffee beans are 367 million pounds. They purchased it from suppliers approved by C.A.F.E Practice.

Is espresso stronger than coffee?

A cup of coffee prepared with mocha contains about 0.0035 to 0.005 oz of caffeine. It is much higher compared to 0.0021 to 0.0028 oz in a cup of espresso. There you have the answer.

What espresso does Starbucks use for caramel macchiato?

Latte Macchiato is a great drink on any occasion, start the day, after lunch, or a quick meeting with your friends. And a variation of this beverage is called Caramel Macchiato. 

It perfectly combines the mild bitterness of espresso, the creamy flavor of warm whipped milk, and sweet caramel.

Final Words

Each product mentioned in the review has its advantages, disadvantages, and price. The best coffee beans for Espresso are not cheap. But if you want to save money, you can find good coffee beans with promotional offers – don’t forget to keep an eye on them.

It may be interesting to read the opinions of those who habitually consume the unique blends. Although at the end, you will be the one to choose the product that is right for you based on your preferences.