I spent a sizable amount of time last year testing out and reviewing coffee products. From grinders to brewers, figuring out how to best get a fine cup of coffee home brewed. My focus was on the do it yourself solutions, but let’s face it, sometimes you don’t have the time, sometimes we just want a fine cup of coffee brewed quick, delicious and ready to drink. That’s where the Keurig comes in. If you had asked me before, say, last week I would have advised you to ignore the thing. They have their benefits, and the downsides to owning them may be few, but the big two that come to mind are a little hard for me to white wash. Namely, the price per cup of coffee and the sheer waste that they generate. Thankfully both of those issues can be alleviated if you know what you’re doing, specifically, if you buy the right kind of K-cups. The core set sold should probably be avoided, regardless of how tasty you might find it. From my perspective the best option available is these Glorybrew k-cups.
This article marks my first foray into the world of Keurig based coffee brewing, and I am very pleased to be able to start off with a product like this. I don’t own one of them Keurig machines, but my father does, so it also gave me a chance to catch up with family, and get some other opinions on the beverage. As stated in my other coffee articles, I just make coffee, I don’t drink it, my partner, and the vast majority of my family live by the bean, but I just like the smells and the pageantry involved in the brewing process. Needless to say the process of making a Keurig cup of coffee is a little pedestrian by comparison to a a traditional espresso machine or a moka pot, but I can certainly see the appeal.
So let’s get stuck into the review, see how the Glorybrew K-cup stacks up to the other methods on offer.
Glorybrew Variety K-Cup Pack Design and Build Quality
I can’t imagine any other grind review having a section on build quality. It’s the delivery format of this grind that makes this section relevant. As mentioned there are two big concerns to using a Keurig coffee machine, and the more important one for me is the amount of waste generated on a day to day basis. There is so much garbage here. With a regular cup of coffee you may have the empty bag the beans came in, or a cartoon of milk to throw out, but with the standard Keurig cups you have a new thing to throw away every time you brew up a cup. Not exactly eco-friendly. The fine folk over at Glorybrew have seen this and decided to rectify the situation. Their packaging is 100% biodegradable, and does wonders for your compost. The effects of coffee ground on compost is no secret, so for me this becomes a major selling point.
The packaging is minimal, always good to see, a simple cardboard outer box and on the inside we have a resealable thermal bag. The bag is hard wearing, and comes with 12 cups per box. I can imagine using the bag for a number of things once I run out of these pods, seen as it is made of a thick reflective material, means it can retain temperature very well. So long as you store it correctly, in a cool dry place, the pods should last a couple of months, though I imagine they will be drank far more quickly than that.
The K-cups themselves seem to be made of some kind of plastic, and the box takes great pains to educate me on the difference between biodegradable and compostable. Granted, the difference is pretty important, and I didn’t know it before hand. It turns out that biodegradable simply means that the packaging will degrade over an indefinite amount of time, while Glorybrew’s compostable K-Cups are guaranteed to become soil in 7-8 weeks. It’s extremely impressive, and when I looked into what the core Keurig company is doing about their generated waste, I was doubly impressed.
Keurig brand K-Cups are not eco-friendly, what’s worse is their plan to mitigate the amount of waste generated by their products goes as far as to make the cups recyclable. This is not a great solution, as that just means they can be used again. A quick look into the recycling industry shows that it is not currently cost effective, and the vast majority of recyclable products end up in landfills anyway.
Overall here we have a well designed product from a company that cares about what it is selling. Combining not only top notch quality of materials, but also a desire to leave the world a little better. I can only hope that more firms follow their lead.
Glorybrew Variety K-Cup Pack Testing
Glorybrew sell three varieties of their K-Cup. They all share the compostable packaging, but the flavor of the roast differs. I didn’t know what one to choose, thankfully they sell a variety pack that comes with all three types. They can be boiled down to a medium roast, a dark roast, and an extra dark roast, called the Duke, the Knight and the Noble respectively. The naming conventions might show a lack of understanding of the feudal system, but it gets their point across.
Using a Keurig machine is remarkably easy, far more so than even a French press. Just flip up the lid, pop in the pod and hit the button. Takes about 30 seconds too, and you get a cup of coffee that I would deem comparable to the French press. It lacks the look of the espresso, and a properly brewed moka coffee, but with the right settings you can use the results of this coffee as a base for more complicated Italian coffee drinks, assuming you own a steam wand or a milk foamer.
I bought the variety pack, and prepared three coffees for my partner, my father and my mother, one of each of the drinks. Besides having the three of them buzzing for the remainder of the day, they each described the flavors as full and enjoyable. The least loved of the three was the medium roast, my partner found it lacked the punch of its bigger brothers, and my father said the same. Dad had the most experience with this kind of coffee, so I’m placing more weight on his opinion here, but you may disagree. He was used to the Peet’s Sumatra blend K-Cup, and he found the flavor comparable. Considering all of the other benefits to the Glorybrew blend I feel it is likely he will continue to use it, to say nothing of the lower expense.
The price of the variety pack is $25.50 for 36. It works out to $0.71 per cup. Considering what Starbucks are charging these days that is a steal. The price in this quantity is lower than some, but on par with most. From my perspective you are better off buying in bulk. $72.00 flat gets you 108 cups, for $0.67 per cup. A third of a year of coffee, assuming you stick to one a day at the very least, in that price range is excellent, and I have checked.
Glorybrew Variety K-Cup Pack Conclusion
I went into this review with a massive distaste for this kind of product. I expected it to be another wasteful addition to the coffee industry, and instead I have found the solution to the Keurig problem. The coffee itself is sourced from fair trade farmers too, meaning this firm really is doing everything right. The quality of the coffee is excellent, the price is in the right range, and the peace of mind you get from using these cannot be found anywhere else. If you care even a little bit about reducing your impact on the environment, or if you just want to add a little more goodies to your compost heap, then this is the right product for you.