Thursday, June 28, 2012

How To Choose a Single Serve Coffee Maker


Ready to trade in your traditional drip coffee brewer for a single serve coffee maker? Confused by all the options? CoffeeCow.com is here to make the process easier by helping you find your perfect single serve coffee maker!

Tassimo
Tassimo single serve coffee makers utilize T-Discs and have a wide range of brewing capabilities, from brewing a real espresso to milk-based lattes and cappuccinos. If you find that Starbucks is like your second home, a Tassimo brewer may be the right fit for you. With its boutique coffee drinks and a price range from $100 to $200, you’re getting quite a brewer for your buck.

LavAzza Espresso Point
LavAzza Espresso Point, aka the brewer that brings the taste of Italy to your morning cup of coffee. This single serve brewer takes beverage capsules and is also in the $100 to $ 200 price range, which is way cheaper than a plane ticket to Italy. The LavAzza Espresso Point brewer has a unique capability in that it can even make vegetable broth! What will they think of next?

LavAzza Blue
Welcome to the world of luxury and efficiency! LavAzza Blue coffee makers utilize pre-programmed one-touch buttons, so making coffee in this single serve coffee maker is even easier. This machine also uses capsules and is equipped with a one-gallon tank and a steam wand. LavAzza Blue has been described as the new frontier of the single serve coffee maker.

Single Cup Coffee Brewer Comparison - Click to enlarge!

Dolce Gusto
Dolce Gusto single serve coffee makers have the most variation for the lowest price – you’re able to snag one for between $70 and $200. Like LavAzza brewers, Dolce Gusto also utilizes capsules. This coffee maker’s uniqueness lies in the Custom Control Lever, giving you even more control over your coffee without added effort.

Keurig
One of the most popular & well-known brands, Keurig single serve coffee makers have quite a following. Keurig’s K-cups provide convenient, gourmet coffee at your fingertips. Keurig also offers the widest variety in coffee beverages – if you can’t seem to make up your mind, try one of each! The cost for these single serve brewers can range anywhere from $70 - $300.

Pod Brewers
If you’re looking for a simple, no frills single serve coffee maker, we’ve got you covered there, too! Pod brewers can make both hot tea and coffee. Price ranges anywhere from $70 - $200 and great for the environment, as these Pods are also recyclable! 

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With such benefits as ease of use, convenience and the taste of a freshly brewed cup of coffee every time, single serve coffee makers are on the rise and still rising. The chart above will aide in making your search a bit easier. Good luck finding your perfect single serve coffee maker & please contact us for more information. We’d be happy to help you with your quest to find your one true brewer!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

How to Clean / Descale a Keurig Coffee Maker


How do I clean/descale a Keurig coffee maker?

This is an important question – one that we’re asked all the time – so we thought it was time to address it! It is important to properly maintain your Keurig coffee maker and regular cleaning helps your Keurig stand the test of time.

General Cleaning: Cleaning the Brewer and K-Cup Holder

Think of washing your brewer as you wash your clothes – some are machine wash, hand wash or dry clean only, not to mention different colors! You don’t usually throw a mixed load of clothes in your washing machine without first sorting the colors and knowing the care instructions on the labels.  This applies to cleaning your coffee maker as well, since throwing your entire coffee maker in the dishwasher is definitely not recommended!

We suggest reading all the instructions that Keurig provides for your coffee maker. According to Keurig, a soapy, damp and non-abrasive cloth should do the trick when it comes to surface cleaning. Certain removable parts are dishwasher safe; others are not and need to be hand-washed.

Keurig also gives you step by step instructions on how to remove and clean the K-Cup holder.

Descaling your Keurig Brewer

At CoffeeCow.com, we suggest following Keurig’s recommendations on the descaling of your coffee maker.

Depending on water type (e.g. high mineral content), usage and performance, your Keurig coffee maker should be descaled every 3-6 months. Though harmless, scale will hinder the performance of any brewer, and will even affect the taste of your coffee.

Fear not! The solution is as easy as it comes – white vinegar. Simply run a vinegar rinse followed by a fresh water rinse, and voila! You’re back to great tasting coffee out of your high performance brewer. Keurig also offers detailed descaling instructions on this process.

For more information on how to properly care for your Keurig brewers, check out these userguides. Don’t forget to visit CoffeeCow.com todayto see our full list of coffee products!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Dark Roast vs. Bold

Did you know that dark roast coffee and bold coffee are actually two different animals? If you didn’t, you’re not alone. Many people mistake one for the other or think they’re the same, not realizing they are very different - right down to the process in which they’re made.

Dark Roast Coffee

What does the term “dark” mean when referring to coffee? Dark coffee generally deals with the roasting technique. When the roaster roasts the coffee beans, they go through what is referred to as the 1st crack and the 2nd crack. The term “crack” is actually the sound the beans make as they become hot in the roasting process. It sounds like popcorn popping, but the beans are actually cracking. The 1st crack creates light, mild, and the early part of the medium roasts, while the 2nd crack creates medium dark and dark roasts.

This means that the same beans roasted differently will have different flavor profiles. Darker roasts will have more of a smoky overtone with a little more bitterness on the finish while the lighter roasts will have more fruit and earthy qualities.

Roasters know that catastrophe strikes when roasting past the 2nd crack! Roasting past the 2nd crack leaves the beans overcooked, bitter, burnt, and less desirable, as most of their flavor will be lost.

At CoffeeCow.com, we believe that coffee tasting is similar to wine tasting, and just as fun. Coffee has many flavor wheels, charts, and an entire process to roast and triple taste a coffee to determine the best roasting method for the bean. Try brands such as Dolce Gusto: Dark Roast/Grande Intenso, Tassimo Gevalia: Dark Italian Roast T-Discs and Wolfgang Puck: South Pacific Organic Pods, just to name a few.

If You Gotta Be Bold, Try Bold Flavored Coffee

Could singer/songwriter Des’ree really be talking about coffee in the 1994 hit song entitled “You Gotta Be”? Sure, love will save the day, too. We’re just saying that coffee - especially bold coffee - is just as capable of saving the day.

Let’s start with the basics and explain what “bold” means when you’re referring to coffee. In general, bold coffee simply means there’s more coffee flavor.

Think of it like this: Say you use a teaspoon of coffee to make a 6 oz. cup of regular coffee. The bold coffee would be like using two teaspoons of coffee to make the same 6 oz. cup, leaving you with more coffee flavor instead of just more coffee.

Oh, and we’re bold alright. Bold enough to carry coffee with those day-saving, bold flavors you love! Savor the boldness with brands such as Cafe Classics: Classic Bold Pods, Green Mountain: Double Black Diamond X-Bold K-Cups and Emeril's: Big Easy Bold Coffee K-Cups.

As Des’ree might say, all I know, all I know is coffee will save the day. For a full list of our coffee products, visit CoffeeCow.com today!

Friday, June 8, 2012

Why Choose an Individually Wrapped Coffee Pod?

With a growing number of coffee pod brands available on the market today, it’s important to understand the benefits of purchasing individually wrapped coffee pods versus a single bag or pouch containing loose pods. Your decision makes an impact on your morning cup o’ joe!

Individually Wrapped Coffee Pods
Individually wrapped coffee pods are packed with freshly roasted and ground coffee in a paper filter pod, nitrogen flushed and sealed to lock out air and light. These coffee pods are known for their convenience and freshness, delivering a “roaster fresh” cup of coffee every time. Many brands of individually wrapped pods, such as WolfgangPuck, Caf├ęClassics, and Donut Shop, are guaranteed to be fresh for up to 12 months after packaging!  

Loose bagged coffee pods are also packed through the same process - with freshly roasted and ground coffee in a paper filter pod, nitrogen flushed and sealed to lock out air and light. However, once the original package is opened, the product immediately (and much more quickly) begins to lose its freshness. For this reason, Coffeecow.com has made the decision to stop carrying brands that package pod coffee in this manner.

Coffecow.com recommends purchasing individually wrapped coffee pods. We believe in the freshness these pods deliver and invite you to taste the difference. Once you’ve tried these pods, you’ll never settle for a loose packaged pod again!     

Friday, June 1, 2012

Today is National Doughnut Day!

Happy National Doughnut Day from CoffeeCow!
Did you know that the first Friday in June is National Doughnut Day?  (We personally love this idea.  Doughnuts and coffee are practically like peanut butter and jelly!)

National Doughnut Day was originally created by The Salvation Army in 1938 as a fundraiser to help people who were in need during the Depression.  It was also meant to honor women who served their country by serving doughnuts to World War I soldiers (known as Salvation Army “Lassies”).

Today at Dunkin’ Donuts, many locations are offering a free doughnut when you purchase any beverage.

Krispy Kreme’s Doughnut Day Facebook Page touts one free doughnut for every customer today, with no purchase required.

National Doughnut Day may not be the healthiest holiday, but we think everyone deserves a treat once in a while. So go ahead!  Have a doughnut!  And maybe to go with it, try Green Mountain’s Donut House Chocolate Glazed Donut K-cups!  Mmm, chocolate coffee and doughnuts!

Happy National Doughnut Day from your friends at CoffeeCow!