I Tasted Lavazza Espresso Italiano Roast Coffee Beans

by Nigel Ong

Lavazza is a giant in European coffee, producing coffee roasts, instant coffees, and pods. It also offers coffee machines and equipment. Aside from their regular roasts, they offer Espresso roasts in the Lavazza Espresso Italiano Roast.

From my review of Lavazza coffee, it is a hit or a miss. Some, like Qualita Oro and Crema e Gusto, are great roasts, while the Qualita Rossa is disappointing. What about the Espresso Roast?

In this post, I will review the Lavazza Espresso Italiano roast. I will first brew it before trying the coffee with popular flavorings. Finally, I will compare the coffee with other espresso roasts.

About Lavazza Espresso Italiano Roast 

Lavazza is one of the big boys in coffee, especially in Europe. It was founded in Turin, Italy, in 1895 by Luigi Lavazza. Today’s coffee company has products in many parts of the world, including North America.

It also operates its own chain of cafes, aside from supplying coffee to privately run cafes as well.

Lavazza offers a wide range of coffee roasts in its lineup. These include:

  • Qualita Rossa
  • Qualita Oro
  • Dolce e Gusto
  • And more. 

These coffee roasts can be blended or have a single origin from all over the world. You can also purchase these roasts as whole beans, ground, or in capsules.

Several Lavazza roasts, such as the Super Crema and Gran Crema, are available for the espresso market. However, these roasts usually come in larger bags, possibly indicating that these beans are for commercial, not home brewing. 

For home brewing, Lavazza probably has the Espresso Italiano instead, which is what we are focusing on in this post. 

The Lavazza Espresso Italiano roast uses 100% Arabica beans from Central and South America. Lavazza also did not roast the beans too dark, keeping the intensity at 5 out of 10 for a milder espresso.

Reviews on Amazon seem to show that drinkers appreciate the roast’s smoothness and creaminess. Many also seem to think the value proposition is right – the coffee tastes better than the price it is sold at. 

First Impression

My Lavazza Espresso Italiano ground coffee comes in a 12-ounce bag. That’s around 340 grams for you metric folks. 

There are also larger bags around for hardcore fans. Bags as large as 2.2 pounds (1 kilogram) are available for retail buyers too. Price-wise, it is a rather affordable coffee, particularly Euro-style roasts.

The packaging of this roast is not particularly attractive. A dark grey, slightly matted color scheme with some graphics may not be as attractive as, say, Gevalia, Green Mountain, or Intelligentsia, for example. 

The coffee bag is also not as ‘complete’ as expected. There is an escape valve to help keep the coffee fresh, but there’s no foldable tab. That means once you open the coffee bag, you will need a way to fold it down and secure it. 

Upon opening the bag, I was welcomed by a pleasant coffee aroma, indicating the freshness and effective protection provided by the packaging. 

The coffee smells fresh and sweet, with floral undertones. For one second, I thought I was dealing with Ethiopian beans here. The beans are rather neutral, not looking too dark compared to regular espresso roasts. 

How Does Lavazza Espresso Italiano Roast Taste?

For brewing, I would simply brew the coffee as Espresso and then go on from there and make the following:

  • Latte
  • Americano
  • Macchiato

However, I do notice that on the packaging, Lavazza indicates that the coffee can be brewed regularly, using a dripper, for example. That means you can brew the coffee in more ways than just Espresso.


All right, it’s time to start pulling some shots. I turned to my trusty Wacaco Minipresso GR for this. 

I first ground the beans down into Espresso. Then, I loaded 8 grams of fine ground and about 30ml of hot, off-boiling water into my Minipresso before pumping out a shot. 

I love what I see. The smell of Espresso fills my kitchen. The Espresso produces rich, thick crema that looks very inviting. 

I brought the Espresso closer to my nose; there was not much smoke or woody smell with the Espresso. Instead, I get some fruity tones.

I took a sip, carefully ensuring I sipped enough coffee, crema, and air. What I get is an airy espresso with a bold-ish flavor. It is not too strong and does not slam my palate like regular espresso roasts. 

I get to taste some sourness, likely the acidity from South American beans in the blend. Once I swallowed the Espresso, my tongue caught some bittersweetness, possibly dark chocolate. 

As I continued to sip along, I also picked up floral and fruity notes, which is very pleasing, to be honest. I wanted to sample more of these notes, so I let the Espresso linger on my tongue a little longer than usual.

This is not too hard to do since the Espresso is not too strong – this is not the type of super dark Espresso you would rather gulp than sip.


Not too many people drink straight Espresso. Generally, the Espresso is watered down into Americano to make it more sippable.

That means I should try the Lavazza Espresso Italiano as an Americano. I deliberated between Americano or Long Black for a while, but I opted for the earlier one. The reason? It’s more popular. 

I brewed a shot of Espresso and added two shots of hot, off-boiling water to break the crema up. The results? A balanced cup of coffee, but with very sippable attributes. 

The Americano has a balance of fruity and floral notes and a bit of acidity. This will be very enjoyable if you enjoy sour notes on your coffee. If you have a sensitive stomach, I’m afraid you may want to be careful with this roast.

I can easily see the Lavazza Espresso Italiano Americano serving as a good post-lunch coffee. I’ll grab one for myself and a few more for friends at the office to beat the afternoon slump.


Next up, a Macchiato. I heated my fresh UHT cow’s milk in a microwave and poured it into my IKEA Mattlig Milk Frothing Jug. Then, I frothed the milk using the IKEA Produkt Milk Frother

When that was ready, I pulled a fresh shot and poured a small dollop of milk into the Espresso. The milk also added some white color to the crema, making it a nicer drink to look at, too. 

Taste-wise, the milk improved the coffee, at least in my opinion. It mellows down the Espresso beautifully, blending the fruity, floral notes with some milky creaminess.

The milk also helps to sweeten the Espresso slightly. This should be the lactose in the milk doing its thing. 


Next up, I better make a Latte. It is probably the most popular coffee with milk formula anyway.

For my Latte, I used the regular formula of one part espresso and three parts milk, with a thin foam layer on top. The results? Let’s say I like what I see.

Taste? Even better. With more milk, the whole package becomes a soft cup of coffee with smooth, milky richness. There’s also more sweetness from the lactose, making my cup of Latte very enjoyable to drink.

The coffee is also able to hold its own against that much milk. I can still taste the earthy coffee with the fruity and floral notes.

Lavazza Espresso Italiano Roast vs Popular Espresso Roasts

As usual, I picked up several espresso roasts in my stash compared with the Lavazza Espresso Italiano:

  • Starbucks Espresso Roast
  • Gevalia Espresso Roast

As usual, I brewed straight Espresso from this coffee and got about with my tasting test. 

From this list of espresso roasts, I would say that they are all enjoyable and make great Espresso. However, I have to pick a winner. In this case, I’m going with the Gevalia Espresso Roast.

The Gevalia espresso hits the spot with its malty, cozy vibes and doesn’t come at you with sharp flavors. It also has the right amount of smoke and wood flavor, making it a satisfying espresso.

My issue with Lavazza’s Espresso Italiano is the smoke. The floral and fruity notes are nice, but the lack of smoke and that espresso punch makes it a less satisfying experience, at least to my palate.

Is Lavazza Espresso Italiano Roast For You?

I think the Lavazza Espresso Italiano is an ‘approachable espresso.’ It is definitely an espresso roast, but not the type that produces super smoky Espresso that you only gulp in. 

This is not your regular French, Viennese, or Italian espresso roast.

This will likely preserve the floral and fruity notes, which Lavazza did well. As a result, you get a lighter espresso that is manageable and sippable. 

You can also brew the coffee as an Americano or Latte and still enjoy it. This adds a dimension of flexibility to the roast, I suppose.

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