Beth and George are back with a new Volcano Coffee Works espresso review! If you missed the Bold review, let’s catch you up: we’re using the Nespresso pod-compatible Minipresso for the easiest espresso shot possible. Volcano’s pods are 100% compostable, completely disintegrating within 150 days, and their coffee itself is exquisite.
Volcano Coffee Works
Working in London’s artsy, multicultural Brixton neighborhood, Volcano roasters create inspired small-batch coffees using ethically traded, premium coffee beans. Their recyclable pod packaging resembles a classic novel, but you don’t have to turn in a book report. Rather, you can select pods based on your espresso preferences, such as Bold: Morning Shot; Balanced: All Day; or Reserve: Rich Sweet.
Balanced: All Day Shot
Origin: Fair trade beans grown in the Minas Geras region of Brazil; roasted and packed in Brixton, London, United Kingdom
Everything about the Balanced espresso shot gave off dessert vibes. The package description mentions the ‘mildly nutty body’ that pairs well with milk. We certainly picked up on nutty scents and hints of cocoa, and Beth discerned a woodsy pine needle aroma. The gorgeous chestnut color of Mexican hot chocolate sin leche – that is, without milk – was topped with a light, delicate crema. For the sake of reviews, we’re espresso purists, but we certainly agree that Balanced would make for a lovely latte or cappuccino. Plant-derived milks could pair well with Balanced, too, and may be easier to carry if you’re on the go – unless you’re in a country like Spain or France where boxed milk is readily available.
Speaking of France, Beth’s first sip came with a side of time travel! The taste of Balanced espresso transported back to her studies abroad as she savored the notes of a rich cocoa dessert or candy – one she couldn’t name but remembered fondly. If you’ve enjoyed a fine chocolate truffle dusted with cocoa powder, you may recall tasting sweetness, then a warm, dynamic bitterness. Add a hint of hazelnut or caramel and voilà, you can imagine how Balanced tasted perplexingly delicious! George took the hot chocolate comparison further when he said he wished he’d made a double shot and enjoyed it as a sipping espresso, rather than a power shot.