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Lack of "excellent" coffee blends: Consumer Reports

posted 2/2/2010 7:12:45 PM |
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I thought this information would be of some interest to some of the coffee drinkers on here.

NEW YORK (Reuters) – After tasting 37 different blended coffees, Consumer Reports couldn't find one that measured up to its "excellent" or "very good" ratings, the publication said Tuesday.

The less-than-glowing report follows a year that saw tight supplies of high-quality arabica coffee beans in Colombia, followed by steep premiums that caused some roasters to look for cheaper and more available options for their blends.

Ranking at the top of the list of 14 caffeinated blends -- earning a rating of "good" -- are the Starbucks House Blend, calculated at 26 cents per cup, and Green Mountain Signature Nantucket Blend Medium Roast, at 23 cents per cup.

Blends are the best-selling type of ground coffee and contain beans from at least two regions or countries, the publication said.

The highest score for the 13 decaffeinated coffees also failed to reach the top two categories. The better scoring varieties included Allegro Organic Decaf, Blend Medium Dark, Peet's Decaf House Blend, Caribou Daybreak Coffee Morning Blend Decaf and Bucks County Decaf Breakfast blend.

Consumer Reports has a rating criteria in which the tasters look for specific characteristics including the flavor and aroma.

The publication advised coffee drinkers not to count on familiar brand names or expensive price tags, noting that the cost doesn't accurately reflect the cost per cup due to varying grind densities, and recommended ratios of coffee to water.

Consumer Reports is published by Consumers Union, an independent nonprofit organization that does not accept outside advertising or free test samples, it said in a release.

Full results of the coffee ratings will be available in the March issue of Consumer Reports and online at

(Reporting by Marcy Nicholson; Editing by Lisa Shumaker)

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Feb 2 @ 7:23PM  
my maxwell house south pacific blend tastes pretty good still.

Feb 2 @ 7:27PM  
I drink two cups first thing in the morning..
Usually Maxwell House Master Blend..
I'm not a coffee aficionado but the best, bar none,
I've ever had is Jamaican Blue Mountain.

Feb 2 @ 7:39PM  
I'm not a coffee aficionado but the best, bar none, I've ever had is Jamaican Blue Mountain.
I agree 100%. The Japanese have a 60% take of all Blue Mountain coffee production. The high demand for it has made the price prohibitive for most people. Otherwise I like dark roast Kona coffee.

I don't know what criterion CR used to determine the ratings. Taste like so many thinks is highly subjective.

Feb 2 @ 8:55PM  
I wish I did drink coffee cause some mornings, I need that get up and go boost! But I don't like coffee. I usually have tea or water when I get up

Feb 2 @ 9:44PM  
Cafe Bustelo.....The BEST!!

Feb 2 @ 9:49PM  
Well, I still like my Maxwell House Breakfast Blend or Master Blend.

Feb 2 @ 10:08PM  
I dont care what the consumer reports say............There is only one decent coffee and that is Folgers...........all the others...........bleh...............

Feb 2 @ 10:39PM  
I'll stick with my Folgers Gourmet coffees made with distilled water, thank you!


Feb 2 @ 11:45PM  
I hold Consumer Reports in very high regard. However, I drink Folger's

Black Silk and I haven't noticed a difference so far.

Feb 2 @ 11:58PM  
was traveling last w/e; stopped in the middle of the night to gas up and get cup of joe; din't pay any attention to what it was; then when took a sip, thought it superb; but, ppl who would drink it black, prolly wouldn't care for; anyway, turned out to be dunkin donut brand

Feb 3 @ 12:10AM  
I'll just stick to my diet pop or tea.

Feb 3 @ 2:39AM  
Down here is Community Coffee. A local brand. And I like it better than any of the national brands. They have several different blends, and I've tried most of them. we usually get Between Roasts, Cafe Blend, or New Orleans blend with chicory.

As for Starbucks. It always tastes burnt to me. It's OK loaded down with sweetener and flavorings, like in Latte's. But a cup of Starbucks with cream, no way. Another that I can't abide is Caribou Coffee. It's another coffee chain and again it tastes burnt

Anyway that's my opinion and that and $2.50 will buy you a skinny Venti Vanilla Latte with low foam at Starbucks.


Feb 3 @ 1:37PM  
It is obvious everyone has a favorite. I like to try different brands when I am out of town. I do know my favorite is grinding my own beans. Regardless of where the beans are from it seems to give me the freshest tasting coffee and a stronger flavor! Go Beans!!!!

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Lack of "excellent" coffee blends: Consumer Reports