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Info Details
Country Austria   
Type Flavored   (Coffee; Milk Chocolate 32%)
Strain Hybrid   
Source Dominican Republic   
Flavor Earthen   
Style Mainstream      
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Cup o' Joe has a brand new face on its mug: Josef Zotter.

In an age when "stars" are born every nano-second & pronounced as such by critics before they can barely talk, Zotter remains insuperable, even in this Austrian double-suicide pact that harkens back to the Mayerling Incident. The one that took place at an obscure hunting lodge in the village of Mayerling in the famed Wienerwald (Viennese Woods... Beethoven composed many scores in his head while walking thru them).

Apparently 30 year-old Crown Prince Erherzog Rudolf of Austria (the only heir to the throne) & 17-year-old Baroness Maria Vetsera took their lives on a cold blustery winter night there, January 30, 1889. His father, the emperor Franz Josef I, objected to their affair & reportedly ordered them to end it.

Rudolf’s wife -- that’s right he was married to Princess Stephanie at the time -- simultaneously had her own extra-marital affair going on while he engaged in his so she may not have minded at all (think of them as Charles + Lady Di’s royal role models).

Rudolf supposedly grew despondent & allegedly formed a suicide pact with his mistress Maria. One account claims they had a drunken evening of it the night they met their ends, draining champagne & other wines.

Originally spun as a heart failure (which, in a sense, it was) their deaths later were officially declared a double suicide. Nonetheless, efforts to disguise the facts provoked intrigue, rumors, & conspiracy theories involving foreign-led assassination plots.

Whatever the exact circumstances, had they put down the bottle & picked up this bar, they might’ve survived the ordeal, heartbreak & all.

Then again, maybe not, considering how the cocoa & coffee in it give themselves up, impassioned in being subsumed by milk.
Appearance   4.1 / 5
Color: a new hue appears in the universe: café blonde
Surface: simmering
Temper: opaque
Snap: coaster strength
Aroma   9.3 / 10
utterly fresh-brewed from minutes ago: Viennese roast, of course, with a head of latte
Mouthfeel   10.2 / 15
Texture: granulated dregs swell into a wax ball
Melt: a bit to & fro
Flavor   45.8 / 50
berry-bright coffee with cream -> butterscotch -> paraffin as substantial cocoa butter melts thru carrying cardamom (a high point) -> all the preceding synergistically stack-up soft vertical mocha of tremendous persistency -> cigarette & scone the background
Quality   17.1 / 20
Subtle cup. Zotter, always full of surprise & guile.

Most coffee-cocoa combos are all-Dark affairs. Several of the best however include the milk shot & mainly in-house / 4-P style: Planted, Produced, Processed & Packaged in the country of origin where both coffee & cacáo grow: El Ceibo's Dark-Milk Coffee, Caoni's Milk Choc-Coffee & Santander's White Chocolate Coffee head the line-up.

Though on the face of it a Milk Choc base, Zotter's formulation approximates Santander's White Coffee more than any other.

He tosses the whole tool kit in the mix, & note that cocoa mass appears low on the list: raw cane sugar, cocoa butter, full cream milk powder (20%), coffee beans (4%), sweet whey, cocoa mass, more whole cane, lecithin, vanilla & salt.

Cocoa consequently furnishes a very light touch, just enough however to make it all fuse into that full café-breakfast by the end (with the smokes & biscuit FXs). Before then, it also influences the vanilla-cream fusion for soft butterscotch.

Some flaws mar the overall experience. A waxen, greasy Texture for instance that announces itself in the mid-palate as paraffin, but too minor in the big picture to deny that Zotter calls the shots & just kills 'em.

Reviewed October 10, 2011

  

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