Friday, September 11, 2009

Fuel Espresso

For those who have been following local food magazines, you know that Fuel Espresso has been in the news very frequently and has created much noise in the local community both for coffee lovers and food lovers alike. I have visited this place many times, usually around 6 - 630pm when I got off work nearby. One major factor that attracted me back to this place aside for the coffee is the casual atmosphere and the cheerful + friendly character of the Baristas here. (personally, I still prefer Coffee Assembly @ SoHo over this place for its environment and atmosphere because it is more cozy and non-commercial compared with others similar establishment)

I think I had too many cups of espresso here at the wrong time of the day before (ie: evening), so today I opted for something different. I ask the barista here to pick one to surprise me. My surprise turned out to be Cafe Mocha. Not my usual order but if other I would not call it a surprise would I? Surprise it was, a delightful one as well. It was not too sweet while maintaining a very strong coffee flavors from the double espresso shots. Extra chocolate sprinkles were placed on top but I am equally happy without them. The foam was of the creamy type which was increasing hard to find in Hong Kong in my opinion. I think many coffee places have foamy type, especially chain stores in Hong Kong, because the cold milk was heated up too fast from the highly pressured steam wand, affecting the frothing of the milk (and its quality). It should be heated up gradually during the frothing process at a certain steaming pressure. Time is of the essence in Hong Kong so speed is a major element in serving coffee as well I guess. Rather unfortunate in my opinion. (of course the quality of the milk matters as well for the frothing of the milk) The above is my understanding of how foamy foam is formed, but please do correct me and enlighten me otherwise because I still have much more to learn about coffee making, especially the frothing techniques. (really tempted to buy a machine to play around for myself!)

As a side note, the espresso here was strong and carried a slight earthy flavors to it. In my opinion, a good espresso to me should be strong while able to stimulate my taste bud to have an aftertaste of ... humm ... bittersweet taste for a lack of a better word. The many cups of espresso I had here were able to give me that lovely aftertaste, hence another reason for my frequent revisits.


  • Service & Atmosphere
  • Consistent coffee / espresso - semi-creamy foam
  • Closes too early in my opinion
Avg Spending: Below HKD 100 per person

Fuel Espresso
Shop 3023, IFC Mall


e_ting / e 婷 said...

Great post - Fuel is my current favourite for coffee in HK and I agree about the unfortunate mall decor (Simply Life on the other side of the mall is much more comfy, but the coffee there leaves much to be desired). I find Coffee Assembly/Cafe Corridor a little too light for my palate. Re foaming milk, the milk must be heated at high pressure for it to produce an even spread of super tiny bubbles for a cream-like result - easier said than done and often is less about the time than the barista's technique and the machine

Jason said...

@e_ting: I have been back to Coffee Corridor a few times over the last few months but their coffee consistency seems to vary a lot nowadays. I see some new faces (barista) there so possible due to the skills / techniques which leaves much room for improvement. Consistency is a very important element to me and so far I am quite satisfied with Fuel and its coffee.

Daisy said...

I went to Fuel on the strength of this review and double thumbs up! I like the choice of short coffees - loving the Latte Ristretto, although I've never seen this option in Italy. The orange cake was delish too.

I like Cafe Corridor and I agree the coffee seems to have changed, but it is still a million miles better than what you get from the chain coffee joints.

Jason said...

@Daisy: yeah! I am glad you had a great time there as well! I am still in search for more good coffee places :)

albina N muro said...

As a side note, the espresso here was strong and carried a slight earthy flavors to it. In my opinion, a good espresso to me should be strong while able to stimulate my taste bud to have an aftertaste. delonghi esam3300 esclusivo magnifica

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