9 Best Espresso Coffee Brands

If you love espresso, you know that using the best coffee beans makes the best shots. Here are some of the best espresso coffee brands that you should try.

Best Espresso Coffee Brands
Using the best coffee beans makes the best shots

Aroma, oiliness, color, freshness, value, and packaging are several things to consider when buying espresso coffee. Crema quality is also a significant factor when choosing good coffee beans for your espresso.

With these essential qualities in mind, we have created a list of the best espresso coffee brands that you will want to try out, each with unique flavors that will give you a different experience with each brand. 

1. Volcanica Coffee 

Volcanica Coffee Tanzania Peaberry is a one-of-a-kind, high-end coffee brand that produces exceptionally delicious espresso.

This brand has fruity flavor notes of dried fruit, delicious chocolate, and orange. It utilizes the 5% chance of coffee cherries growing only a single bean instead of two beans which results in double the flavor richness.

Grown on rich volcanic soils on the slopes of Mount Kilimanjaro in Moshi, the coffee beans produce a rich and intense aroma. This coffee has a delicate sweet acidity, smooth buttery body, intense flavor, and a dry finish with mellow winy overtones.

Tanzania Peaberry Coffee
$17.99 ($1.12 / Ounce)
  • 16-ounce.
  • 100% Pure Tanzanian Peaberry Coffee from the slopes of Mount Kilimanjaro.
  • Medium roasted whole beans.
  • Fresh roasted then immediately packed and sealed to assure freshness.

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03/06/2024 03:40 pm GMT

2. Illy 

This brand is something European-style coffee connoisseurs will likely enjoy. Illy Intenso Ground Espresso Coffee is a blend that uses nine Arabica coffee blends from around the globe to make Espresso Intenso. It results in a bold and robust roast that remains smooth but never becomes bitter, making other coffees bland in comparison.

Coffee beans from a thin can
The pressurized metal enhances the flavors and tastes of espresso

Even though the coffee beans are pre-ground, they come in an air-tight package. The pressurized metal enhances the flavors, keeping the espresso’s taste fresh even after so many cups.

Additionally, Illy only uses ethically-sourced coffee. 

illy Intenso Ground Espresso Coffee
$25.99 ($1.48 / Ounce)
  • Ground Espresso Coffee
  • Bold Roast
  • 100% Arabica Coffee
  • 8.8 Ounce Can
  • Pack of 2
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03/08/2024 03:59 am GMT

3. Starbucks

If you love dropped by Starbucks for your morning brew, you’ll be keen to replicate the experience at home. The brand’s dark roast espresso goes down a treat if you have a sweet tooth; you’ll detect notes of caramel and molasses in your coffee.

This espresso is made from 100% Arabica coffee sourced from Latin America and Asia-Pacific. It’s strong and bold, ideal for days when you need more help waking up.

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03/07/2024 10:54 pm GMT

4. Kicking Horse Coffee 

This brand is a good choice because, first of all, Kicking Horse only buys organic and shade-grown Arabica beans directly from farmers from all over the world. Kicking Horse Coffee Cliff Hanger Espresso only uses coffee that is certified good and fair for both the coffee drinkers and the farmers. 

In terms of flavor, Kicking Horse Coffee Cliff Hanger Espresso has a silky and complex wild berry syrup flavor note with a smooth cocoa finish. It also has the aroma of blackcurrant, milk chocolate, and brown sugar — optimal qualities for making espressos.

This coffee brand uses whole organic Arabica beans, which are farmed sustainably. 

Kicking Horse Coffee, Cliff Hanger Espresso
$34.70 ($0.99 / Ounce)
  • Cliff Hanger Espresso
  • Medium Roast
  • Whole Bean
  • Certified Organic
  • Fairtrade
  • Kosher Coffee
  • 35.2 Oz
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03/08/2024 10:35 am GMT

5. Intelligentsia

Intelligentsia Black Cat Espresso Blend is a renowned specialty coffee from the United States. It is known for its direct trade and tight connections with coffee farmers. As a result, high-quality and healthy coffees are bought for a reasonable price from the farmers.

That is not the only good quality of this brand. The flavor that Black Cat coffee beans produce is rich, dark, and chocolatey, with a hint of sweetness. Plus, the body is medium to complete, perfect for making espresso.

The coffee beans contain low acidity levels for our coffee drinkers with sensitive stomachs. Additionally, this brand is excellent with milk-based beverages due to its low acidity. If you are looking for healthy coffee without sacrificing flavor and strength, Black Cat is your choice.

Intelligentsia Coffee Black Cat Espresso
$14.99 ($1.25 / Ounce)
  • Medium Roast
  • Whole Bean Coffee
  • Black Cat Espresso
  • 12 Ounce Bag
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03/08/2024 03:55 am GMT

6. Koffee Kult 

Koffee Kult Thunder Bolt is a relatively new brand in the American coffee market. Founded in 2010, Koffee Kult is a family-owned and operated coffee roaster specializing in single-origin organic and ethically sourced coffee. 

The coffee has flavor notes of earth, molasses, and smoke and a full body with a long finish. Green apple, lime, and pineapple are also prominent in the dark roast.

A hint of cinnamon is noticeable when brewing the coffee beans. Thunder Bolt is best made for espresso, but it also works well in other methods.

The coffee beans sourced from Colombia get packed in small batches, assuring precise flavor profiles. Additionally, the brand has a variety of other dark roast coffees that are all Fair Trade.

Koffee Kult Thunder Bolt French Roast
$39.99 ($0.08 / Ounce)
  • French roast.
  • You can use it in a French press, to pour over coffee or in a drip coffee maker for a perfect cup every time.
  • Fair-Trade & Organic.
  • Our coffee beans are placed in the packaging immediately after roasting.
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03/07/2024 02:00 pm GMT

7. Coffee Bean Direct 

Coffee Bean Direct Italian Roast Espresso is a coffee brand known for its robust coffee and tart flavor, which is excellent for making espresso. Some describe the taste of this blend as less intense than other coffee brands. Nonetheless, it is still a solid choice if you want full-flavor, dark, Italian-style espresso with a rich layer of crema.

The espresso beans are organically grown in the rich soils of Ethiopia, which are then dark roasted to perfection. This results in a bold coffee with low acidity — a fantastic flavor for espresso lovers who love their strong cup of coffee. Additionally, the beans are shade-grown at high altitudes, which results in a robust and flavorful coffee.

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03/07/2024 10:00 am GMT

8. Death Wish Coffee

Death Wish Whole Bean Coffee is an excellent choice for the environmentally conscious. It is a USDA Certified whole-bean coffee brand with a reputation for a strong caffeine kick.

This coffee has a smooth flavor with hints of cherry and chocolate. And since it is a dark roast, its flavor delivers a strong bite without being highly acidic. You should also note that the beans are slightly oily, but it does not present any clogging issues.

Dark roasted coffee bean
A dark roast coffee, its flavor delivers a strong bite without being highly acidic

If ever you find yourself unsatisfied with this coffee brand, a money-back guarantee is offered. This is incredibly convenient since Death Wish is one of the most expensive coffee brands on this list. 

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03/06/2024 10:40 pm GMT

9. Stumptown

Stumptown Hair Bender is known to be one of the pioneers of the “third wave” of coffee that focuses on the origin, growing and processing methods, and coffee quality. Not to mention, it is highly sustainable as a coffee brand.

Hair Bender has the rich textures and volcanic brightness that you will see in Indonesian coffees. It also uses the fruity characteristics of Latin American coffee and the earthy depth you can find in coffee beans from Africa. The citrusy and dark chocolatey flavor notes with a blend of tart and bitterness for balance are perfect for making your espresso.

In short, Hair Bender uses a blend of coffees from Indonesia, South America, and Africa to make the espresso you can find in every Stumptown coffee shop.

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03/06/2024 10:39 pm GMT

You may also be interested in reading our tips for picking the best coffee for espresso.


  • Aisling O'Connor

    Aisling is an Irish food and drinks writer and journalist fueled by coffee and herbal tea. She followed up her journalism degree with nutrition studies. Find Aisling on LinkedIn.