January 8, 2010


This is the winter of coffee. I have been introduced to the awesome Keurig machine and the lines of coffees available for it in K-cups. While not as cheap as standard drip coffee, it is perfect if you only want to make one cup. I could never get a decent one-cup brew out of regular coffeemakers - you have to do at least half a pot. The Keurig is nice and the cost ultimately is slightly less than bodega coffee - with a lot more selection. For the record, I am definitely a fan of the Newman's Own extra-bold. I don't usually like extra-bold coffees (i.e. Starbucks), but it works here.

Up to this point, I've been using instant coffee. Now before you all start wincing and gagging, I want to advance a couple ideas; namely that a) instant coffees have advanced a lot since the early days of Folgers Crystals. (Hell, even Folgers instant has gotten better.) b) Instant stays at its quality level damn near forever in the freezer; beans don't. and c) instant coffee now comes in many more options, flavors, and styles than before.

The kind of been using most is the Maxwell House singles. They appear to be a mix of instant coffee and real grounds in a teabag-like sack and if you follow the directions, they make a pretty good afternoon cup of coffee. Not too strong, not weak at all, and takes the lightener and sweetener like a real coffee will.

Now of course Starbucks - or Whorebucks as my inner monologue refers to the chain - has gotten into the act with their Via Ready Brew. I have not tried this, but I've asked people who have and they all shake their heads. Of course, these people are all addicted to the crap Whorebucks passes off as coffee and most of them are getting the five-dollar Diabetes Specials that are so full of sweeteners, flavorings, and milk that to call it coffee anymore is really kind of a joke - so it's not a surprise that Whorebucks fans don't actually like the instant coffee version - it's just too plain and they don't own the equipment or materials to tart it up like their favorite whoredrink.

There was a feature on the news where one of the reporters went onto the street and invited people to do a taste-test. Results similar to what I've outlined above. Only one guy like the instant more.

This leads me to think that giving Via might be worth it for ME to try. However, it is very expensive. I got to wondering how much more expensive, so I put all these options into a neat little list:
  • Via Ready Brew instant | $34.95 for 48 ct = .73/cup (equivalent of a Tall)
  • Whorebucks real | $1.40/cup (Tall)
  • Newman's Own Keurig | $10 for 24 (macys) = .42/cup (best at 8 oz)
  • Maxwell House Singles | $4.39 for 19 = .23/cup (best at 8 oz)
Clearly, MH Singles are the most economical, outside of brewing your own. Keurig makes a good choice if you don't have to have a giant cup of coffee every time and want something you can actually finish before it gets cold.

Still, nothing beats dollar-a-cup bodega coffee for comfort factor.

25 minutes stationary bike today, instead of running. Maybe run tomorrow.


Joe said...

I like the VIA coffee for at work, I just leave it in my desk drawer and it makes for a good afternoon cup of coffee which is a lot better than the other option of quickness, which is a 7-11 cup of coffee from around the corner. A warm heavy duty laxative at best - there are no bodegas here in Virginia Beach.

I drink Starbucks more than I'd like to admit, I always get a strong tall americano (four shots in it) and put just a little plain sugar in it. At home the french press is where it is at.

Cris said...

I agree with the French Press, for sure. When I'm settling in for a long weekend morning of reading or watching cartoons, I make up the french press. It's good for three cups of coffee; but it's a mess.