June 9, 2010

Re-Review: Coffee People Original Donut Shop K-Cups

Review Single Serve Coffee


According to Coffee People's website, they got their start at the Saturday Market in Eugene, Oregon back in the early '80s, selling small batches of roasted specialty coffee to market goers. Soon after in 1983, they opened their first coffeehouse in Portland, Oregon. Later in 1999, they were acquired by the Diedrich Coffee Family who in turn took over the roasting duties of their beans from them. The rest is history and has formed the Coffee People brand (now headquartered in Irvine, California) many people have come to know & love today.

We decided to revisit "the holy grail of K-Cups" which just about everyone & their grandma appear to adore (based on various forum comments & other site reviews): Coffee People Original Donut Shop K-Cups. Yes, before many competitors started releasing their own imitation versions, Coffee People were one of the 1st companies to release a donut shop coffee in K-Cup format, so they can be considered the pioneers in that sense and it's likely why their website shows "The Original" added to this K-Cup's name (the K-Cups we purchased didn't have this printed on them).


This is a medium roast coffee and as with most Coffee People K-Cups, it's an Extra Bold variety (or at least that's what it says on the box). We've already reviewed this K-Cup in the past prior to the packaging's design changes, so we decided to see if anything other than the packaging itself has changed since then.

Upon brewing, we could smell a very light aroma with a slightly nutty nose & mild earthy undertones. For the casual coffee drinker, they would likely describe it as an average coffee aroma with nothing out of the ordinary. Just what you'd expect at your run of the mill donut shop. Acidity is still quite low but remains well balanced and doesn't muddy things up or overpower the final taste. The body is your typical fare of medium-brown with usual crimson-red notes when held to a light source.


One thing which seemed slightly improved from last time was the flavor. It was well rounded & had a bit more presence than before but once again, we weren't noticing anything extra-bold about this coffee. It just had mild hints of being such a blend in the flavor and nothing more. As most people in the forums seem to be commenting, it reminded us a slight bit of Dunkin Donuts regular roast coffee and we suppose it could be quite likely the closest we'll get to the real deal in a K-Cup (for now anyway).


Some of you are probably wondering how Timothy's Donut Blend K-Cups compare and the best we can describe the two would be plain & simple: Coffee People's variety tastes somewhat like Dunkins & Timothy's version taste somewhat like Denny's. That should give you a basic idea of how the 2 compare. Mouth feel was quite smooth without any major bite but not watered-down at all.

  • Aroma - 8 - Light & nutty with very mild earthy undertones. Average coffee aroma overall.
  • Acidity - 9 - Very low acidity, well balanced overall. Doesn't overpower the final taste.
  • Body - 7 - Typical medium-brown with crimson red hues revealed via light source.
  • Flavor - 8 - Reminds us a bit of Dunkins. Well rounded with smoky notes and a sweet taste. Definitely not an extra bold but still has some bold hints in the flavor.
  • Mouth Feel - 8 - Very smooth with no bite, not watery at all. Mild nutty notes in aftertaste.
  • Coffee Drinker - Suited best for light to medium-roast coffee drinkers but is a very well-rounded basic coffee overall which should appeal to most people. For a good daily "cup of joe", we can understand why this one's a favorite among most fans.

Overall Rating: 89 - Good

Overall, other than the slight improvement in flavor, not much has changed with Coffee People Original Donut Shop K-Cups. They're still a rock solid choice that offers a really good average cup of coffee which most drinkers will likely use on a daily basis during their morning routines. We always tend to keep at least a box or 2 on-hand at all times and use this as a fall-back when we run out of our favorite flavored varieties. Just as with Timothy's version, our guests seem to enjoy this K-Cup as well when they ask us for a "regular cup of unflavored coffee". The final flavor is what earns this K-Cup a few more points than before and we highly recommend that you at least give this a try if you haven't done so already.

On a final note, we'd like to remind our Canadian readers that for once, they're not left out when it comes to this K-Cup on their side of the border since now both SingleCup.ca and Tweed & Hickory are selling the entire Coffee People K-Cup line-up on their websites. We hate it when countries can't easily buy some of the brands we review, so to our friends up North, we raise a cup to you & thank the above companies for finally offering this brand in their area.

Coffee People's Original Donut Shop K-Cups will work in your Keurig Elite B40 Brewer, Keurig B50, Keurig Special Edition Ultra Elite B60, Keurig Platinum B70 Brewer, Breville BKC600XL Gourmet Single Cup Brewer , and other Keurig K Cup brewers including the Keurig Mini B30.

At Coffee People Original Donut Shop K-Cups

A special thanks to SH for providing this review. Read how we review and rate single serve coffee and other single serve coffee beverages here. We would also like to note that we purchased these K-Cups on our own for the purpose of this review.

Read More in: K Cup Reviews | Keurig & K-Cups | Reviews

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Posted by Jay Brewer at June 9, 2010 7:43 AM
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