We continue our Second Cup review series today by checking out a milder version of their Paradiso coffee found in their Second Cup Paradiso T-Discs.
Once again, much like the dark roast version, these T-Discs are the size of the old Starbucks T-Discs or more common milk creamer T-Discs. Would this yield a stronger tasting medium roast or make things overly sour due to more amounts of acidity? Let’s find out.
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Brewing these T-Discs resulted similar smoky notes blended with hints of dark chocolate and molasses, however unlike the dark roast version, the slight spiced raisin notes were replaced with very faint traces of cinnamon.
Flavor was as we had expected… the acidity turned things on the sour side and gave the coffee a citrusy taste. It dominated the cup and made it very difficult to detect any other notes present. Repeated tastings did eventually yield faint notes of molasses & smoke, but at that point, we were REALLY searching hard to find anything other than the citrus flavors.
Acidity was unsurprisingly on the stronger side due to the larger size of the T-Disc which had more coffee in it. We’re used to most medium roast T-Discs being in the smaller more conventionally-sized T-Discs.
The extra amount of coffee just made the acidity the primary focus point of the coffee and harmed it rather than enhancing anything. There are ways to make citrusy coffees work well as a morning coffee, this unfortunately wasn’t one of them.
Body was medium to dark brown with tinges of gold on the edges but things really exploded when held in front of a light source. The added light revealed massively vibrant shades of red, orange and yellow with some sunburst effects going on in certain corners of the cup.
By far one of the liveliest displays of colors we’ve seen since the ghostly auras of our Celestial Seasonings Honey Lemon Ginseng Green Tea K-Cup review.
Mouth feel was somewhat smooth with a slight watery feel to it. Finish was sour overall with some faint notes of smoke in the aftertaste.
- Aroma – 8 – Smoky notes were still present but not as strong as the dark roast version. We also detected similar notes of dark chocolate & molasses but this time the underlying aromas was cinnamon instead of spiced raisin.
- Acidity – 2 – This is where things take a wrong turn. Instead of being balanced, acidity is on the stronger side making everything overly sour. While it does give the coffee a citrusy taste, it does so a bit too much to the point where it’s difficult to detect other flavors.
- Body – 10 – What this coffee lacked in acidity, it made up for in body. Medium to dark brown but things really explode into a massive display of bright red shades with sunburst effects in certain corners of the cup when held in front of a light source.
- Flavor – 2 – As noted above, the intense acidity gives everything a citrusy taste and makes it difficult to focus on any other flavors. Upon closer inspection, we eventually detected faint notes of smoke & molasses but just kept being overpowered by the sour citrus notes overall.
- Mouth Feel – 5 – Somewhat smooth with a slight watery feel. Finish was sour overall with some faint smoky notes in the aftertaste.
- Coffee Drinker – While this coffee seems to be squarely aimed at citrus lovers, it’s not the kind of citrusy taste you’d expect from your average cup of morning blend coffee. Instead of being mild & nuanced so that it accentuates the final cup, it’s strong & bold to the point where you wonder if half a bottle of lemon juice was dumped in during brewing. If you like sour coffees, this is for you. Otherwise, stick with the dark roast version instead.
Overall Rating: 84 – Average
While we really enjoyed the Paradiso Dark T-Discs, we couldn’t help but wonder what went wrong with these lighter-roasted Paradiso T-Discs. We enjoy vibrant citrus notes everyone once in a while, but only when the process is done properly so that it enhances the coffee… not to the point where it overpowers it.
We wouldn’t exactly call this a lemon-flavored coffee, but a couple of tweaks here and there would probably achieve just that. It just goes to show it’s worth the time & cost to explore a coffee brand’s entire range/line-up since you never really know if you’ll be wanting a second cup or wishing you hadn’t taken the first one to begin with.
Second Cup Paradiso T-Discs work in all Tassimo Brewers (dual barcodes for home & professional models are on the discs) and are available in 12-packs for $10.99 CAD at various Canadian grocery store chains, at participating Second Cup coffee shops across Canada and online via either Amazon.