While espresso brews, pour 2 tablespoons cold water in medium bowl and sprinkle gelatin over.
Set aside to bloom (soften) for 5 minutes.
When espresso has brewed and gelatin has softened, pour 2 cups (16 oz.) hot espresso over gelatin mixture and stir to combine and melt gelatin.
Add sugar, a tablespoon at a time until desired degree of sweetness is achieved.
Keep in mind you will eat this cold, so a little extra sugar may be necessary no matter how perfect the sweetness level seems when you first try it.
Place bowl over ice water bath, stirring occasionally to promote even cooling.
Pour mixture into serving glasses and refrigerate until set, 2 hours or overnight.
Beat heavy cream with sugar and vanilla.
To serve, place a dollop of whipped cream on each serving of gelatin.