Thursday, September 16, 2010

Starbucks Instant Coffee

Starbucks will probably kill me for calling their new product, the Starbucks VIA®, an "instant coffee".  Well, how else should I put it? Instant is instant right?  Well, for Starbucks it isn't.  They market the product with the tagline "This is not instant coffee as you know it.  This is rich, flavorful Starbucks coffee in an instant." Notice the difference? Naaaaaah .... hehehe (^o^)/

The Starbucks VIA® Ready Brew was introduced here in the Philippines just yesterday, September 15, 2010.  It comes in 3 different brews namely: Colombia (medium), Italian Roast (extra bold), and Decaf Italian Roast (extra bold).  

Finally, Starbucks has come up with its own instant coffee line.  It supposedly took them 20 years to develop this.  They're using a new micro grind technology that preserves the coffee beans' essential oils and flavor.  It promises to deliver a rich and flavorful experience close to a freshly brewed Starbucks coffee.  And all the consumer has to do is add hot water.    

True enough, the cups I tasted earlier smelled and tasted like freshly brewed coffee or Cafe Americano sans the crema on top.  I didn't enjoy it that much however because I never take my coffee black.  I like my coffee with cream and sugar and preferably iced (iced cafe latte).  (Visiting the Starbucks site will reveal a 4th type which is Starbucks VIA® Iced - instant coffee specially formulated for cold water. I wonder when this will be introduced here.)

Note however that the cups I tried were prepared by the partners of Starbucks.  I still don't have first hand experience on preparing and drinking it at home.  If you visit a Starbucks outlet this week, I bet the product will be available for tasting just like today.  I was planning on buying some to take home but at 130 pesos for a 3-pack or 450 pesos for a 12-pack, I decided not to.  That's roughly around 40 pesos per cup which is 8x the cost of a Nescafe 3-in-1 instant coffee.  Don't get me wrong.  It does taste much better than Nescafe.  In fact, they shouldn't be compared at all.  It's just that I take my time when I prepare and drink my coffee.  Coffee time is time to relax and slow things down.  I do this even when my day is turtle-slow.  I simply don't have a need for anything instant as of the moment.       

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