You are the judge of your local barista. An excellent espresso should have soul-satisfying body, a smooth texture, a rich sweetness, and a pleasant taste on the palate that lingers for at least an hour. Never bitter, never insipid, never acrid! Espresso, prepared well, will offer complexity in the cup and a balance between flavors and body. Does it sound as if we were tasting wine? Tasting an amazing espresso is much like tasting wine. You have to practice in order to teach your palate. As with wine, that is a seriously fun task. With practice you will notice spice, nuts, cedar, caramel, chocolate, citrus, and many other flavors. You will also find uncomfortable and unpleasant flavors that you should avoid. Soon you will be able to choose your coffee like a true aficionado.