Wednesday, April 08, 2009


It's funny...I always considered Starbucks to be the answer to bad coffee of the days gone by. Then other fine coffees started coming out and I always found Starbucks to be tasting more and more like burnt tar. Now, we have a small cafe in my work place that serves coffee and when I want something other than the free swill we have in the office, I end up with a Starbucks. I don't love it, but I doctor it up enough that I can make due.

Well, for those of you who love Starbucks and don't know what you would do without it, I think there's an interesting option available to you. See, Starbucks recently launched their version of instant coffee. Funny right...Starbucks gained its fame as being THE coffee you go to a cafe for and not the Folgers or Maxwell House or Taster's Choice. Now they have their own instant coffee, Starbucks VIA.

When they launched the product, they had an offer for free samples, and I had to get my hands on some, to see what it was all about. Again, knowing I don't love Starbucks, but do drink it pretty regularly, I have to say, this is a pretty good product. It's not perfect by any meals, but as a substitute to the real deal, it works.

I received two small packets. One is Italian Roast and the other was Colombian. High grade Colombian! If you've seen the small packets of Crystal Light drink mix, these are the same shape and size. Perfect for traveling or storage in small spaces. They can also be purchased for about $10 for twelve 8 oz servings.

With the fine powder poured into my mug. The aroma was their, not really strong, but a good solid coffee aroma. If you don't want to drink the instant coffee, I think it might be a nice addition to baked goods, if you want some coffee flavor??? I don't know, that just came to me, but I could see adding it to some rich chocolate cookies for a rich mocha flavor.

Since the packets are measured out, you need to carefully add the water, so you don't dilute the coffee. 8 oz per packet. The color was there, as was the taste. Like I said, it's not the same as the fresh brewed Starbucks, but when you don't have that, this is/was a good substitute.

For those who know me, you know that I ruin my coffee with lots of cream and sugar. LOTS of cream & sugar. This instant coffee doesn't require as much of either for me, so that's a good thing. With Starbucks, I feel I'm adding those things to mask the bitterness that I don't like.

When all was said and done, I preferred the medium roast Colombian to the dark roast Italian Roast. I'm not going to run out and search for Starbucks VIA, but if it's presented to me, I wouldn't pour it down the drain either.

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