February 8, 2013 by Beans Ahoy
Nespresso has just added the Linizio Lungo coffee to their range in all its flame orange splendor. Despite the colour which I am beginning to take a shine to, the proof as always is in the tasting.
Finezzo Lungo appears to have been sacrificed in favour of Linizio which is no great loss. Finezzo had a tendency to be a little underwhelming in the cup and was usually destroyed the minute milk was introduced. Linizio is different with a stronger character and warmer tones both in the aroma and taste, but I have a gripe. I have always said that I don’t understand how Nespresso arrives at their intensity ratings and this coffee has done nothing to help that confusion. It feels a little like they had to create a replacement for the Finezzo and that despite what they tasted, they had to rate it the same intensity to fit properly in the range. Linizio is rated at 4 out of 10, but it is more comparable to Livanto (7 out of 10) than it is to Dulsao (4 out of 10). There is definitely more body to this coffee, and stronger flavours. More of a 6 out of 10 to me.
However, despite the intensity gripe which I don’t think I will ever get a handle on the rest of the experience was pretty good. I can see why Nespresso says this has “cereal” tones. I thought when I first read the marketing material that cereal tones was a daft way to describe a coffee, but I can see what they are on about (See tasting note below for more complex breakdown).
The selected mix of Arabicas is a little too heavy to discern one region from another. Nespresso say they have used Brazilian and Colombian but you don’t really taste any particular characteristic of these regions (a common trait from heavy blends) and the coffee has a typical high light grown taste. Not bad though. A good everyday coffee that I think is much more versatile than the Finezzo it replaces.
There is something that I really should mention but haven’t in the past, mainly because it has nothing to do with the taste and quality of coffee, and that is the quality of Nespresso’s service. I must say that it is really very good. Staff are very helpful (sometimes maybe a little too invasive when perusing), but overall the experience is exceptional. I do wish other retail outlets had this level of service. So thank you Nespresso and Nespresso staff.
Aroma has a definite ‘cereal’ note, but more specifically there is also a slightly fruity prune aroma, with very faint hints of zest. The taste is bolder than the Finezzo it replaces and works well in cappuccinos. There is bold structure to the coffee covering the whole mouth. Elements of wood taste and quite dry. Very much like raw walnut with a very slight tart bitterness. Just don’t expect a typical 4/10 in intensity, it’s a little stronger than that. 6.3/10.0