'Instant' Specialty Coffee... Thoughts?

(Shawn Thacker) #1

Hey Hustlers,

Okay, full disclosure here… I really want to like this concept strictly from a convenience standpoint when at work (if you don’t work in coffee…) or when travelling. For home use though, there’s something about the romance of preparing coffee and the anticipation over the course of ~3 minutes or so, but there’s enough people looking for convenience at home that I think there’s a market there as well. I don’t think we’ll see many shops pushing this in a cafe setting, but I suppose it could be packaged nicely and sold as a pack of 6 or so similar to the Starbucks VIA line but I don’t know if this is still around.

Anyhow, from the handful of these I’ve tried from different ‘manufacturers’, I’ve been greatly disappointed. I can tell that it’s trying hard to be a good cup of coffee, but the murkiness in the cup, and the chalkiness in the finish is all I remember about them. Does anyone else have an experience or opinion (good or bad) with ‘instant’ specialty coffee…?


(Shawn Thacker) #2

Nobody has anything to add here? I guess I’m the only one who fell for these! Anybody want to buy some? :wink:


(j l) #3

I will add my view, and I think I speak for everyone… :grin:

The VIA is serviceable in a MRE like natural disaster or apocalyptic event.

A preference for sure, though only marginally, to running one’s finger through the apocalyptic ash left from the demise of civilization and subsequently whisked(to taste) through the water that has been collected in a, not so unsurprisingly, Folger’s can.

Survival tip, contents of Folger’s can upon opening, should always be emptied prior to repurposing. Likely, this will occur instinctually without any forethought but still does bear mentioning.

Another view, is that instant coffee to third wave standards is a technical impossibility without a completely molecular level approach, taste synthesis.

(Shawn Thacker) #4

…I should clarify here as I re-read my post and it was a bit confusing. I’m not advocating VIA at all (or any other instant coffee for that mater) and was thinking more along the lines of this or this.


(j l) #5

Back to my last sentence then, instant coffee cannot be made to third wave standards and expectations. Unless a somehow new molecular approach is taken.

I wouldn’t comment on other commercial ventures specifically, but there should be a market for instant coffee that is better than what is available now. There is much room for improvement.

I think because of these issues, from a marketing view, it is best to keep messaging within “relative” terms, comparing to current instant coffees.

Market for it? Likely, but America typically still does not have a palate preference for medium roast or in short, flavor profiles that “don’t taste like coffee”. And these are the types that would probably benefit most from instant coffee.

So… pursuing instant flavor profiles that are non-traditional coffee flavor types, do not have an audience. Those who would differentiate and want those flavor profiles are not going to be friendly to instant coffee. Caught in-between or in the “upside-down”.

If an audience though does not exist… make one! That is the power of marketing and innovation, just take the longer-term view. I would go after the traditional coffee flavor and target audience that enjoys it first, a major technical and social problem to be solved for the latter group of third-wavers.

And, I reserve the right for this to be complete and utter bs. :smiley: Just streaming thoughts…

Also American perspective, but still apply wherever. Just have to identify the traditional expectation of taste for coffee, do it right, and then don’t be too experimental with variations when building brand around that flavor profile.

(Oliver Hollenbach) #6

Sudden coffee is good.

(Shawn Thacker) #7

…I can’t ‘like’ your comments here, but thanks for chiming in! :joy:


(Mitch Hale) #8

Parlor Coffee has an instant offering. Not sure if it’s any good, but if I needed instant coffee for backpacking or something it’d be what I’d have the highest expectations of: https://parlorcoffee.com/collections/all-products/products/instant-prospect

(Rob) #9

Hello… I am new to the forum and noticed this post. Very interesting because I have been wondering the same thing myself… There are a few companies out there now that are promoting their instant “third wave” coffee and seem to be very successful…

I think the audience are people who want better coffee than their average coffee but are not yet ready to make a full transition into actually brewing the coffee themselves…

I have been considering trying these out just to see what they are all about for myself, however, their price point seems a bit too high and for some of these you have to have subscriptions otherwise you don’t get any.

(Shawn Thacker) #10

…with this month’s BH Superlatives, they’re giving a packet of Voila Mamuto AB with each shipment.


(Rob) #11

I am not a subscriber yet :frowning_face: