Don’t get hooked on the Keurig Donut Coffees at Costco

While the Keurig is not as sophisticated of a coffee system as the Tassimo, they do have an impressive line of K-Cup coffee offerings. The system treats each pod the same so the many providers of the coffee options pick and choose which of their line will work best with the system. Several brands offer many of their regular drip coffee versions, while others may offer just a regular and decaf.

Costco carries the standard machine, packaged with a few of the coffees on the market to sample which you may like best. They also offer large 80 K-Cup boxes of a few coffees. Most notable has been the Folgers Gourmet Lively Colombia (medium roast).

Also in the ‘big’ box is The Donut Shop Coffee from Coffee People. Well, they ‘did’ offer it, for a couple months.

Many times at Costco, things appear and then go away a short time later. Sometimes this is because the offering isn’t as popular as hoped but many times it is because the product manufacture was just getting folks to try. Then, they pull the bulk product and the only place to buy is in smaller quantities for more money in regular retailers.

There is actually still ‘Donut’ K-Cup coffee at Costco, but it is “Donut House” Coffee.

There is nothing wrong with the Donut House compared to the Donut Shop coffee… we just found it interesting that Costco stopped a coffee and replaced it with a very similarly named product.

For those that care, the Donut Shop is a bit ‘stronger’ tasting, while the Donut House is more ‘bold’. Both are fine… and it’s always great to have new options to try.

As a side note, if Donut Shop did do a bit of test marketing at Costco, it worked. In a visit to Crate and Barrel this weekend, the K-Cup area had only the Decaf version of the Donut Shop coffee left. The counter person said the regular option is always out of stock due to popular demand, now.


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Oops, missed the whole George Clooney, Nespresso “What Else” thing

In this month’s (January) “Wallpaper” magazine is a two page add for Nespresso showing George Clooney. Wow, he is now doing Nespresso ads now.

Well, actually, he has been doing them for more than a year. My miss, my bad. It would appear that he filmed a commercial for Nespresso just after releasing his movie “Up In The Air” in 2009. I found a page on Nespresso pointing to it. The below is a screen shot of the resulting page. It would appear that the commercial wasn’t for the U.S. .

But, leave it to YouTube and you can find the video you want or need. Here is George being George and Nespresso doing coffee.

And a follow on to that one with John Malkovich


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Our friends in Canada recommend Tim Hortons

Tim Hortons is something that I along with other Canadians truly feel is one of Canada’s great wonders. Tim Hortons is undoubtedly one of the single most popular coffee shops ever.

Every time I go to Tim Hortons I get the same welcoming feeling. Polite staff, familiar menu, familiar colors, and a familiar smell. No matter where the Tim Hortons is located, all of these are the same. Because of this, people continually come back, including myself.

Tim Hortons has very cheap coffee, and it tastes amazing. You can buy an extra large coffee for under $2, and it really is “Extra-Large”. the coffee is smooth, and you can really taste the way the coffee has been roasted. The aroma of the coffee is very deep and rich, and it is one of those familiar smells.

Tim Hortons is most famous for their “Double Double” which is a coffee that has two shots of creme, and two shots of sugar. It is also my personal favorite. The reason it is my favorite is because sometimes the coffee at “Timmys” tastes a bit too burnt, and this offsets it enough so that the coffee is more or less perfect, every time.

Another great feature of time Hortons is their food. Every time I get food from them, it is simply amazing, and once again is a great price. The French Onion soup, and their Sandwiches are very rich, warm, and great tasting.

Overall, Tim Hortons is a great place, and anyone who gets the chance really should try it. I recommend it to anyone visiting Canada, and people who live in the United States seeing as they have opened a few stores there.


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Your cup of coffee is part of the Global Economy

It’s fun to see new infographics on coffee. Previously there has been ones on caffeine, what is in your favorite espresso drink as well as the history of coffee. Now, one from mint.com outlines “How Coffee Affects the Global Economy”.

It is full of info like how many grounds are sold per year, where coffee is most drank and how many people are involved.

Grab your copy of view online. This is just a snap shot of one small part of the larger infographic:

There hasn’t yet been a life cycle of the coffee bean yet, someone should do a poster of that too… please!

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The House Coffee Bar Looking To Get in Their Groove

Having owned many retail businesses, I know how difficult it is to open the doors and get in the groove of providing a service and providing customer service. No matter how much you polish the chrome, first impressions are your employees. It is important to smile before you make eye contact so that your smile is in your eyes.

The House Coffee Bar has opened their doors in Ft. Worth, right on the edge of the west side downtown. It is an area that is looking to be the place people live and shop. Many of the old buildings are being refaced or torn down for new, with the average building being single story and new condos being built as high as three.

A single parking space length off the road was once a three store mall, now the home of The House Coffee Bar and conference room spaces. The dark windows and artistic block letter sign could easily be missed by all but the locals. Judging by the number of cars out front, the locals are spreading the word.

Once inside, you are greeted with the ‘usual’ danishes with a few local specialties mixed in. High on the wall behind the counter and espresso bar is two large thin screens showing the menu of drinks and sandwiches. The dark wood walls, black leather wrapped furniture, large tables and open air environment says less about ‘welcome’ and more about ‘bring your friends with you… take your time’.

The staff was nice, making no attempt to offer additional items or pressure up sells, they took my coffee drink order efficiently. There was a bit of an air of ‘in training’ with the talk amongst staff so the extra time for the drink to be finished felt acceptable. When the espresso was delivered, it had a nice punch in the taste that set it above the big chain coffee houses. I had a Mocha, which was syrup rather than powder carrying a nice level of sweetness without being over powering.

While myself and the gent behind me in line where welcomed more warmly than most businesses I frequent, the three men behind us where greeted with great energy. Making us feel like we were ‘just customers’. It was soon apparent that all three individuals have used the space for meetings and hung out longer than the time to drink an espresso.

Will I go back? Of course, the coffee and available space is just right for the area. It will require taking clients ‘away’ from town but once inside I can see the atmosphere being right to meet. And of course, I need to go enough so I can get greeted with the high energy welcome, everyone wants to go someplace they know your name.
915 Florence Street
Fort Worth, TX, 76102
http://www.thehousecoffeebar.com

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