Choosing an authentic Italian espresso brand | What to consider

Italian coffee culture revolves around espresso. Often enjoyed while standing at a bar, Italian espresso is known for its intense flavour and creamy texture and often has a thick body. The art of making espresso is deeply ingrained in Italian society, and choosing the best-quality ground coffee is an important part of this experience. Finding the right ground coffee is also crucial for extracting the best flavour from your espresso machine.

Here, we take you through how to choose Italian ground coffee and discuss the benefits of buying from an authentic brand.

Why choose Italian espresso ground coffee?

Authentic Italian ground coffee for espresso allows you to get a taste of Italian culture from your own home. If you don’t have the necessary equipment for grinding your own coffee beans and are looking for a more convenient option, espresso ground coffee is a perfect choice. Available with different underlying flavours, you can also choose the perfect option for your taste.

Shop our complete range of authentic Italian coffee and hot drinks here.

How to choose ground coffee for Italian espresso

Consider the roasting process and origin

Look for authentic Italian ground coffee that has been roasted in Italy to enjoy the best Italian espresso experience. The roasting style used can vary to reflect different regional flavours and traditions. For example, our Napoli coffee is blended and roasted in the traditional style of the master roasters of Naples, which is the darkest style roast in Italy. Read our guide to the history of Italian espresso to find out more about cultural norms and traditions.

Consider the underlying flavours you want in your espresso blend

Italian espresso coffee is usually roasted to a medium or dark level. The roasting process is designed to bring out the rich chocolatey or caramel flavours that are characteristic of Italian espresso. Some Italian espresso blends, such as our Napoli ground coffee blend, provide more dark cocoa and smokier notes. Our Roma espresso ground coffee blend, on the other hand, provides flavours of walnut, dark caramel, and spice. Doing some research on the brand’s website and looking into the typical flavours of Italian espresso blends beforehand can ensure you find an option for your taste.

As a brand rooted in Italian culinary tradition, Carluccio's takes pride in delivering authentic Italian coffee. Our commitment to quality and tradition is evident in every cup. The roasters of Carluccio’s blends roast each type of bean separately in the traditional “drum” roasters, which spin the beans constantly while surrounding them with hot air. A longer roasting time at lower temperatures avoids any burnt taste and recreates the results of the constant, careful stirring given to the pan-roasted coffee beans.

Read our guide to making Italian espresso coffee here.

Look for finely ground coffee

The grind size is crucial for the perfect espresso. Italian ground coffee that is ideal for espresso is typically very fine, almost powdery. This fine grind allows for the high-pressure extraction process that creates a rich, intense shot of espresso with a thick crema. For example, Carluccio’s ground coffee is finely ground to the perfect consistency for espresso machines. This fine grind ensures proper extraction and a rich, flavourful shot of espresso with a thick crema.

How is the coffee packaged?

Italian ground coffee should be packaged in an airtight container or vacuum sealed packaging. This allows you to maintain maximum freshness for as long as possible. Carluccio's coffee is packaged in airtight containers to preserve its freshness, flavours, and aromas. This ensures that you get a consistently great cup of espresso every time. It is also beneficial to choose coffee that has recently been roasted to enjoy a fresh cup of espresso coffee.

Shop our full range of coffee and hot drinks here.

Why choose Carluccio’s espresso ground coffee?

At Carluccio's, we celebrate the rich tradition of Italian espresso. Our espresso beans are sourced from the finest growers, then roasted and ground in Italy, preserving the authenticity and superior quality of the beans. This meticulous process ensures that each cup of espresso you enjoy at Carluccio's not only tastes excellent but also carries the heritage of Italian coffee culture.

Find out more about how to drink espresso the Italian way here.

By adhering to traditional Italian roasting practices and using only the finest beans, we ensure each cup of espresso is fresh and full of flavour. Additionally, we are also committed to responsible sourcing, ensuring that not only are our products of high quality but also ethically obtained.

Choose between our sweet and refined Milano blend, our rich and lively Napoli blend, or our intense, creamy and full-bodied Roma blend for notes of walnut, dark caramel and spice. For a gentle yet rich flavour, our Siena espresso provides aromatic hints of citrus and almond.

Shop our full range of Italian coffee and hot drinks here.

Enjoy a sweeter, refined blend with Carluccio’s espresso di Milano

Enjoy Milanese-style ground coffee from pure Arabica beans. We use 100% Arabica beans from Central and South America, Africa and Indonesia.

Our Milano espresso blend provides chocolatey, caramel and hazelnut flavours. To grind your own beans finely for use in an espresso machine, you can shop our Milano coffee beans here. You can also grind our Milano coffee beans coarse for use in a cafetiere, providing honey, toffee and nutty flavours.

Milano espresso coffee blend

Shop our Milano espresso coffee blend .

Read our full guide on how to drink espresso like an Italian here.

Frequently asked questions: Italian ground coffee for espresso

How important is the roast date of coffee beans?

Freshness is key to a great espresso. Coffee’s flavour starts to become less intense around two to three weeks after roasting, so try to choose coffee that has been roasted within the last month. Check the packaging for the roast date on your Italian ground coffee before purchasing.

What should I look for in the packaging of Italian espresso ground coffee?

Good packaging is essential for preserving the coffee’s freshness. Look for vacuum-sealed bags or tins with one-way valves that allow gases to escape without letting air in. This helps maintain the coffee’s quality over time.

How do I know if the coffee is authentic?

Reputable brands that offer coffee that has been roasted in Italy, such as Carluccio's, are a good indicator of authenticity. The best-quality authentic Italian coffee brands will also offer espresso coffee in different flavours and intensity to reflect various regions.

When you choose Carluccio’s espresso ground coffee, you can choose between a large range of flavours and types. If you are looking for a sweeter blend, we recommend choosing a blend such as the Milano espresso blend.

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