January 2014

Sainsbury's Taste the Difference Chirinos Coffee

Sainsbury's Taste the Difference Chirinos CoffeeSainsbury have gone for broke with a range of Taste The Difference coffees served in Illy-style tins. Not quite as sophisticated as the Illy tins, but better than a placcy bag.

The excitement was palpable when we pulled the ring pull on the top - expecting the Illy style rush of nitrogen and coffee mix exploding out of the tin. What a disappointment - even a half dead Nat after a night on the curry could displace more wind than came out of this tin. But it's a tasty little number this one - it frothed up nicely in our caffetiere and looked just plain appetising. They claim complex flavours - but we couldn't get them. But it is a nice tasting coffee - slightly more citrus than bitter and one that anyone could make, drink and love. Every cup we made came out the same - it's just impossible to cock this one up. There's two more coffees in this range - and to be honest we couldn't tell the difference between any of them. So buy 'em all - they're all cheap anyway!  8/10

13 votes
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San Marco Italiano Coffee

San Marco Italiano CoffeeFirst coffee of the year - and it's a French import bought from a flit to Gay Paris.

It's the usual Euro-Brick packaging - but for once someone has managed to design a packet that you can actually open with your bare hands and that doesn't immediately dump half its contents straight down the front of your shirt.  To be honest, the French are the last people I'd expect to have cracked that problem, what with their usual nonplussed attitude to health and safety, but on reading their website we discover the packaging was designed by Michael Angelo no less which really shows our ignorance as us Judges weren't aware that he was a) still alive or b) working in the food and beverage packaging sector. So that's 5 points in the bag already for these guys for that coup. On to the coffee - this one is so finely ground its tricky to even get it onto the spoon without it all blowing away. The effect of which is to deliver a ball-crushing strength of coffee. Just too much. The key to this one is to do your weights and measures carefully. Where we'd normally use five spoons for two cups, this one had to be pegged back to just 3.5 spoons - and at that level it have us what we wanted. A classic Italian super strong coffee. No novelty flavours or aftertastes - just pure, dark coffee. So one point off for the fiddley-ness in brewing, gives it a 7/10.

4 votes
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Robert Rothschild Premium Dark Coffee

Robert Rothschild Premium Dark Coffee

This coffee came from TK Maxx – buried amongst the racks of tacky gifts and oversized knickers.

The packet of this stuff oozes quality – it's got words like “Rothschild” and “gourmet” on the front of the packet. It looks nice. We were sucked in. But read the back of the packet and you discover this “Rothschild” bloke knocks this stuff out in Florida. Now, anyone who’s anyone knows that you can’t get a decent cup of coffee in America – and this stuff proves the point – it’s only 90% coffee. The other 10% is finely ground polyurethane - presumably left over TK Maxx plastic bags. The first batch we made at normal strength – which nearly finished us. Only when we toned it down could we actually drink enough of the stuff to give it a fair and honest chance. And it’s bloody awful. Bear in mind - this stuff is their PREMIUM coffee - which begs the question what the f*'k do they put in their standard version? Presumably just un-cut iron filings.Whatever you do, don’t buy this stuff. You will regret it. If you're in TK Maxx just go and get yourself a nice pair of cheap ski gloves instead. 1/10

10 votes
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