Homegirl hit up TJ's early this morning before coffee and breakfast to pick up some bread because we're actually out of bread. Did not expect the lines to be so long before 9am, but y'know, word on the street is that we're in for some crazy snow that we haven't seen in about a year. Commence typical pre-snowpocalypse pseudo-panic. Don't people have work?? And because it was so crowded, TJ's did not have any free samples of coffee either! Crazy! Which led to this purchase! And now I'm caffeinated enough to use exclamation points!
Pour over really isn't that complicated (if you're not one to be weighing grams of coffee and water and timing the brewing session that is. :P), and I do it all the time at home. When am I ever in need of pour-over-in-a-bag? Still, too intriguing to pass up.
Can I just say, these product makers are kind of asking to be sued. Except they're in Denmark so maybe things are different there. The brewing instructions are fairly straight forward. Open, add hot water, steep, and serve.
Pulling off the plug was fine. I had some trouble opening the top zipper. LOOK at how SMALL that opening is! HOW am I supposed to pour SCALDING HOT WATER into a PAPER BAG (probably lined with some kind of plastic or something) WITHOUT burning myself?? Small children and clumsy adults beware. The hot water isn't included! Y'all have to pour it in yourself!
I used a liquid measuring cup. Be very very careful. Let me repeat that - be very very careful!
I filled it to about the 10 oz. line. I tend to like my medium dark-roasts on the stronger side.
It's not a teapot but it's certainly short and stout. There's no handle but there is a spout. Pour in steaming water - be careful, don't shout! (pause and wait 4 minutes) Tip her over and pour her out.
I'm happy to report that neither small children nor clumsy adults were harmed during the making of this post. As for the coffee itself, it happens to be the exact kind I like to drink hot and black. Nutty with chocolate notes, low-acid, and medium-dark. Claims to give a French-press taste without the French press. Ehhh..the jury is out on that one. I'm pretty sure the beans matter more than the french press, even when you do brew with the french press. While it does taste better than a lot of typical, mass-chain places that claim to brew coffee, I wouldn't call this a bougie cup of coffee by any means. On a side note, I would buy this blend in regular whole bean form (they probably do have it or something similar. I just haven't tied it yet). Just a few more things to point out:
1) If the coffee beans have to travel from Brazil to Denmark for packaging and then to the US for retail, fair-trade or not, you better believe the beans have degraded.
2) How the filtration system works? Beats me.
3) $1.49 (the retail price of this coffee brewer) x 2 = more or less about the price of a real coffee shop pour-over
4) I guess I COULD take it to work. This coffee brewer wouldn't fit under a Keurig dispenser but I I could lug along a measuring cup that could hold the hot water. But why? If I'm going to do that, I might as well bring the other gear. And a milk frother because at that point, it's go big or go home.
4) The only circumstance I would think of where this MIGHT be useful is travel to a foreign country, where you couldn't bring a drip-cone/pour-over-cone and a coffee grinder or pre-ground coffee. I certainly wouldn't take this camping, because if you're going to go through the trouble of boiling water in the great outdoors, you might as well bring along the other stuff too. I also wouldn't bring this to an airport or on a plane because how in the world are you actually going to pour hot water into this bag at 20,000 ft and NOT burn yourself and your seat mate?
But still. The coffee wasn't detestable enough for me NOT to buy it again. I want to hate this product for the excess packaging and the margin for user error, but the concept is pretty novel. It's kind of like when the iPhone first came out a decade ago. Everyone wondered, "why in the world would I need that?" Perhaps this is the way of the future.
TL;DR: Trader Joe's Pour-Over Coffee Brewer. Pour-over-in-a-bag. AT YOUR OWN RISK PLEASE DON'T BURN YOURSELF. DECENT COFFEE IS NOT WORTH A TRIP TO THE EMERGENCY ROOM. 5 out of 10.