December 5, 2011

Review: Millstone Hazelnut Cream K-Cups

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We continue our Millstone reviews today by checking out their Millstone Hazelnut Cream K-Cups.

Brewing the Millstone Hazelnut Cream K-Cups resulted in creamy hazelnut notes with hints of vanilla when smelled from up close, yet when we brewed one of these K-Cups at work recently, some of our co-workers complained that the nearby corridor smelled as if someone had smoked a cigarette. Wait... what?!? We thought they needed to get their olfactory senses checked since we didn't notice this ourselves and certainly couldn't reproduce the effect at the Single Serve Coffee kitchens here today. Just to be sure, we had a few other staff members walk by the room afterwards and they did not notice anything out of the ordinary either. Jim Morrison was right when he said "People Are Strange".

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November 22, 2011

Review: Millstone Breakfast Blend Fair Trade Coffee K-Cups

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With all the news about Barista Prima K-Cups back at the time and the recent news about Starbucks K-Cups finally hitting select retail stores recently, it's easy to overlook a K-Cup brand that slipped "under the radar" a while back. Today we address that oversight by reviewing Millstone's Breakfast Blend Fair Trade K-Cups.

According to the wiki article, Millstone was founded in Everett, Washington in 1981. Founder Phil Johnson sold 100lb sacks of Arabica beans to high-end coffee shops in the greater Seattle area & pioneered the idea of selling whole-beaned coffees to supermarkets. Johnson sold Millstone to Procter & Gamble in 1996 which closed down most of the operation in Everett and now run the company out of Ohio.

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November 14, 2011

Dunkin' Donuts Hazelnut K-Cups for Keurig

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We continue our review of Dunkin Donuts’ series of K-Cups today with their Dunkin Donuts Hazelnut K-Cups.

Upon brewing these K-Cups, you get a hazelnut aroma but it just doesn’t seem… natural. Unlike some of the other hazelnut-flavored K-Cups we’ve had in the past from competitors (trust us, there’s many), we’d have to say this just doesn’t have a normal hazelnut aroma. Dunkins doesn’t hide the fact that they’re using artificial flavoring in this K-Cup, but unlike their French Vanilla, there’s just something off-putting by this scent. The best we can describe it is coffee that’s been spiked with a few shots of Torani hazelnut syrup. It just had us somewhat weirded-out. Not the best first impression to make, but we’ll still give this K-Cup a chance to redeem itself in other categories. Let’s push-forward & see how it holds up.

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October 31, 2011

Review: Dunkin Donuts French Vanilla K-Cups for Keurig Brewers

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We continue our review of Dunkin Donuts’ series of K-Cups today with their Dunkin Donuts French Vanilla K-Cups.

Upon brewing these K-Cups, a sweet aroma of vanilla fills the room. It was more of a light scent and didn’t have any other aromas hiding underneath. Just straight-up vanilla & nothing else. Made for a bit of a change from the norm since most French vanilla coffees always end up having other scents mingled within. We wish the aroma would have been a bit stronger, but that’s a minor nitpick at most.

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October 19, 2011

Review: Dunkin Donuts Dunkin’ Dark Coffee K-Cups

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We continue our review of Dunkin Donuts’ series of K-Cups today with their Dunkin Donuts Dunkin’ Dark K-Cups.

Upon brewing these K-Cups, strong earthy notes fill the room and are much akin to the Dunkins Original Blend K-Cups we reviewed recently. Similar notes of molasses were hiding underneath but weren’t as prevalent as in the Original Blend. We also noted very faint hints of dark chocolate too. It was like a slightly stronger version of the Original Blend’s aroma and reminded us once again of stepping into our local Dunkins shop. Spot-on.

Acidity was much more pleasing this time around. It’s amazing to see how much of a difference a change in a roast profile can make. Say goodbye to the strong sour notes of the Original Blend and hello to the silky smooth, well-balanced notes of Dunkin’ Dark coffee. You won’t find anything getting in your way of enjoying the richer flavor this time around. We are very, VERY pleased at how this K-Cup turned out.

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October 14, 2011

Review: Dunkin Donuts Original Blend K-Cups

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We’ve all seen the commercials & the ads plastered everywhere from bus stops to taxi cabs and newspapers… America runs on Dunkins. Well, after years of waiting, you can now enjoy a “leisurely jog” to your kitchen since Dunkin Donuts K-Cups are finally being sold in most Dunkins shops across the country. Today we’re reviewing Dunkin Donuts Original Blend K-Cups.

What sets Dunkins K-Cups apart from others? Well, they come in 14-packs instead of your usual 12 or 24-pack varieties but the most obvious difference is that you can ONLY buy them in-person at a Dunkins coffee shop. They’re not being sold anywhere online (not even via Dunkins’ own online shop) and you won’t find them anywhere at a Wal-Mart or grocery store. Dunkins has effectively ensured that you’ll be tempted to buy their other in-store products by being forced to visit one of their shops in order to pick-up a box. Annoying? Yes. Clever sales approach? You bet’cha.

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October 4, 2011

Review: Folgers Gourmet Selections Black Silk K-Cups

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Today we decided to continue our review of the recent Folgers K-Cups with one of our favorites… Folgers Gourmet Selections Black Silk K-Cups. Now, it’s been a while since we had the regular grind version, but from what we can recall, this single serve variety seemed on-par with the regular version.

Brewing these K-Cups resulted in rich woodsy notes filling the room with a hint of dark chocolate & smoky hickory in the background. There were also faint notes of spices in the finish.

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September 28, 2011

Review: Folgers Gourmet Selections Vanilla Biscotti K-Cups

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Today we continue our series of Folgers K-Cup reviews with their first flavored variety… Folgers Gourmet Selections Vanilla Biscotti K-Cups. We have to admit that we missed this flavor when it came out in regular grind format, so we can’t really compare how accurate of a reproduction this is… however, if it’s anything like the previous Folgers K-Cups we reviewed, the contents of this K-Cup should be the same thing you get in the Gourmet Selections foil bags at your local grocery store. So how does the coffee itself stand up? Let’s have at it and see, shall we?

Brewing the Folgers Gourmet Selections Vanilla Biscotti K-Cups resulted in strong aromas of not only vanilla but caramel as well. The scent quickly filled the room and had us captivated from the start. While Folgers doesn’t list what kind of roast this is, they do note that it’s made from 100% Arabica, so if we had to guess, we’d bill this as a light roast. Flavor was spot-on with aroma as smooth waves of vanilla flowed through to notes of caramel in the finish. We’re thinking they should have named this K-Cup "Caramel-Vanilla Biscotti" instead.

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September 21, 2011

Review: Wolfgang Puck Rodeo Dr Blend K-Cups for Keurig Brewers

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Today we’re reviewing a K-Cup which "fell through the cracks", so to speak, back when we were doing our Wolfgang Puck K-Cup reviews. Sticking with our "better late than never" mantra, today we’re reviewing Wolfgang Puck Rodeo Dr Blend K-Cups. Note we did review the coffee pod version of this way back in 2005 and it was called Rodeo Light.

Brewing these K-Cups did not really result in much of an aroma. There was a bit of subdued earthiness at first, then once the brewing process was over, any note of an aroma vanished. We found that even the brewed cup itself didn’t have much of a residual aroma to it and were really forcing ourselves to find anything of note. Rather disappointing to be honest.

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September 15, 2011

Review: Van Houtte Cottage Blend K-Cups for Keurig Brewers

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Much like Green Mountain does each year, we noticed that Van Houtte have started releasing seasonal K-Cups lately. So today, we decided to review one of their Summer seasonals: Van Houtte Cottage Blend K-Cups. Unfortunately, Van Houtte have since removed the listing from both their American & Canadian websites, so we’re guessing the window for these K-Cups is very limited… likely June-July only. We did however manage to find them still listed on Keurig.com (USA only).

Brewing these K-Cups resulted in nice woodsy notes with a hint of smokiness in the background. The woodsy notes paired well with the image of being at a cottage in the forest, so we can see what Van Houtte were trying to achieve here.

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