Saturday, February 20, 2016

Rambling About K-cup Coffees

I have fallen in love with the convenience of k-cup coffees. I actually have this brewer, so it's not a Keurig. I've used this Keurig and this Keurig though and to be 100% honest, my cheapo off brand version is just as tasty. I'm 100% dead serious.

The problem that is then presented is the cost of the k-cups. Those are downright expensive! Sure, I could go another route and get something like these (though my cheapo brewer actually comes with its own, a better buy than a Keurig in my opinion), but then I'm back to grinding my own coffee and so then I may as well use a regular coffee maker.

With that in mind, my quest for the best but cheapest k-cups is rather difficult. I found this article that was not what I really wanted, but it did name a company. Interested, I went to the website and found the real truth. Yes, you can still get it (at the time of this writing) for only 39¢/cup but you have to buy 192 all at once at the whooping price of $74.95.

Another problem, the websites boasts that I can "Set [my] own delivery schedule" but this isn't true either. I have to choose 1 month, 2 months or 3 months. Let's do the math on that (you may want to check behind me just to be sure). I drink (usually) no more than a single cup of caffeinated coffee per day, that excludes occasional evening decaf coffees, but those I rarely drink anyway. I can just buy a box of decaf coffees and those will last me a good long while.

Now, this 1 cup a day thing won't coincide with their shipments schedule. Did you really believe for a second it would? The packs come in only 48 cups, 96 cups and the one I mentioned already, 192 cups. You have a choice of 3 shipment schedules, every: 1 month, 2 months or 3 months (there is no six month option). Let's take a look at how this will work:
  • 48 cups - 30 days = 18 left over every month.
  • 96 cups - 90 days = 6 cups left over every 3 months.
  • 192 cups - 90 days = 102 cups left over every 3 months.
Another thing it tells you is that you can customize your shipment by choosing the coffee blends you want. That's only partly true.
  • 48 cups gets 2 coffee blends.
  • 96 cups gets 4 coffee blends.
  • 192 cups gets 8 coffee blends.
A lot of people are happy with that and that's fine if they are. It just wouldn't work for me. I was hoping for more variety and allow me to adjust my own schedule for my personal needs. Used to, Amazon allowed this for their groceries, but then they too limited you and so then I stopped using it entirely. It's only useful if it's something that works for me. 

So, moving along now. Did I find anything that would meet my needs? Let's take a gander, but before we do, know that the Walmart prices are for my local store. Your Walmart store's price may be different from mine.

Store Product Total
÷ Number of
= Price
Walmart Van Houtte's Raspberry
Chocolate Truffle
(to die for)
$12.98 ÷ 18 = $0.72
Walmart Green Mountain's Dark Magic
(another favorite of mine)
$11.49 ÷ 18 = $0.63
Amazon Green Mountain's Dark Magic
(note same coffee, different store)
$42.72 ÷ 72 = $0.59
Walmart Great Value's Donut Shop or
Breakfast Blend
(ewwww; didn't like either one)
$15.98 ÷ 48 = $0.33
Amazon Beantown Roasters' Variety Pack
(never tried them; so I'm not
sure I'd even like them)
$37.90 ÷ 96 = $0.39
Amazon Dunkin' Donuts'
Chocolate Glazed Donut

(delicious if you can brew it strong)
$14.54 ÷ 16 = $0.90
Amazon San Francisco Bay Gourmet
Coffee's Fog Chaser

(is #1 seller right now,
but I've never tried it either)
$27.55 ÷ 80 = $0.34

As you can see, there is a large price variance. It seems obvious that specialty flavored coffees are more expensive than a plain roast. Whatever you do, I cannot ever recommend getting the Great Value roasts/blends. They are cheap to be sure, but they taste it too. In fact, they taste like Maxwell House. If you like Maxwell House, then go ahead and get it. You'll like that too. If you don't, then stay away. They definitely need to work on those coffees.

The Chocolate Glazed Donut is only good if you can brew it strong. you'll note in the review that they either love it or hate it. There aren't too many in the middle. My brewer doesn't allow strong, so I get that in grounds and use my regular coffee pot, which as a strong brew setting. The coffee doesn't taste strong, but it extracts that chocolate flavor that you're wanting. I can't take the credit for the discovery either. My son was the one who figured it out. I too was disappointed the first time I tried it, but after he said it was good on strong, then I found him to be right. 

The Raspberry Chocolate Truffle is fantastic, but I wish it were a darker blend. It looks like water when it comes out, but honestly it has an amazing flavor and you don't have to make it strong. I'm drinking it right now as a matter of fact. 

Dark Magic is great plain coffee. I prefer dark roasted coffee and my husband bought me those the first time around. It's my go to for just plain coffee. Keep in mind though that Green Mountain is owned by Keurig. They were also chosen as best coffee a few times. In this article others won too but Green Mountain was the only one to win in nearly every category. It had more wins than others. 

This one agrees with the previous that the best roast is Green Mountain's Kenyan blend. 

Did you know that the president drinks one of the most expensive coffees in the world? Well, at least according to Tom Clancy who was famous for his amazingly accurate research. If you clicked the link, then you know what kind it is. Here's an explanation for why it's so expensive. All I know is when my ex and I read that in Clancy's book, we immediately ran to the farmer's market (the best farmer's market I've ever seen and I've traveled all over America) and got some. Man that really was delicious. If you're willing to pay for it, I suggest you try it and yes, some have that blend in k-cups. One is Green Mountain too, but be wary. You may get a forgery. That is, some may be labeled Jamaica Blue Mountain® coffee when it really isn't. Yes, it does happen. In fact, it happened so much that a law had to be passed on the ability to label it as such (archived article). That doesn't mean people follow it though.

Naturally, "you get what you paid for" applies heavily here, but when does it not apply? The thing is, there are great values out there, they just have to be found. The sad part is it may take awhile because you have to find the flavor you really like. 

I may break down and try that Beantown Roaster's Variety Pack when my coffee runs low. We'll see.

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