Taking advantage of a recent tweet promotion from Intelligentsia Coffee for 40% off their 20th Anniversary ceramics, I added a bag of their Fruit Bat Espresso blend to the cart to take get free shipping on the order. Fruit Bat is a seasonal espresso blend that I hadn't had before and I'm glad I tried.
"The distinctive and peculiar fruit bat feeds exclusively on fruits and nectar. This espresso blend has been specifically crafted to mimic the sweetness and flavor of some of the fruit bat's favorite tropical fruits like pomegranate, mango, and lychee."
This particular iteration if a blend of coffees from Costa Rica, Ethiopia, and Kenya, roasted medium-light with distinctly different bean sizes from the different coffees. It has been easy and enjoyable to work with and a very sweet and fruity coffee with pleasant brightness. I tended to prefer this one in the IMS Precision Double 16/20 gram basket creating tropical fruit syrup type shots. Shots from the VST basket were also enjoyable, but a little sharper with more acidity and with a touch less body. In the IMS basket I was pulling shots at:
- 19.3 grams in > 28-31 grams out
- In 27-30 seconds at 198-199*F
I tasted a distinct tropical fruit note that might have been a passion fruit or guava, or maybe it's the lychee they notes refer to and I just don't know what a lychee tastes like! Either way this coffee was seriously sweet, syrupy, and big old tropical fruit bomb.
I did find that it seemed to get a little lost in milk, even as a macchiato, so I tended to drink this one straight. With milk, the coffee was certainly not bad, but I just felt as if it lost a lot of the big fruity flavors that made this unique and tasty.
Speaking of the 20th Anniversary cups, I've commented before how great the Not Neutral ceramics are, and this was finally a chance to snag some unique ones at a killer price. Not Neutral developed the now third wave cafe ubiquitous Lino cups in conjunction with barsiti from Intelligentsia back in the day. The cup was carefully thought out to have a great weight, feel, and be very comfortable to hold in a variety of methods via its uniquely shaped handle.
The cups feature the black cat espresso project logo on one side and the original Intelligentsia logo on the other. The gold "20" adorns the inside bottom of the cup and the saucers feature the "20" in the black cat with 20th Anniversary text surrounding in gold paint. Not Neutral ceramics are not cheap, but this was a great chance to jump on some. Be sure to follow along with my Twitter account where I try and call out great deals and cool things that come up like this.
Unfortunately it looks like this coffee is no longer in season, but be sure to check back with Intelligentsia for the next iteration. $21 for a full pound and free shipping on orders over $40.