July 24, 2007

Caribou French Roast K-Cup Review

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So, I have been dipping into the Caribou French Roast K-Cups recently and all of a sudden found myself at the bottom of the box realizing that I hadn’t really written anything up on them. The K-cups came to us a few weeks about 6 weeks ago, and have been in rotation ever since. When I drink K-Cups, I have a lot of varieties available, but do tend to keep coming back to the Tully’s French Roast as a favorite morning coffee with it’s smoky boldness. So, it was a natural to compare the Caribou to the Tully’s.

Caribou is a pretty popular chain in the upper Mid-west, where I think it gives Starbucks a good run for its money. I like the outside nature and feel of the Caribou design concepts and their coffee is pretty good.

Caribou's website describes the French Roast this way:


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“A combination of coffees from Costa Rica, Guatemala, Colombia, and New Guinea is blended and roasted to a beautiful dark brown with an even development of surface oils. This produces a decadent, bittersweet flavor with a smooth, heavy body - an utter indulgence. Perfect for chilly mornings and flavorful enough to stand up to a touch of milk after dinner.”

In the end, the Caribou French Roast didn’t quite stand up to the Tully’s in my tastings. The Caribou is sufficiently acidic, with some brightness in the cup to make things lively without being grassy. The roast is dark without being burnt, but I like the smokiness in the Tully’s that isn’t there in the Caribou. The body on the Caribou French Roast isn’t quite as richly as the Tully’s and the lack of a smoky note in the Caribou is a good indication of that. Net the Caribou is a clean, dark roasted coffee with a nice flavor profile, but lacks some of the complex mystery that creates a more exciting flavor experience in the Tully’s.

For my money, but the Tully’s if you like a cup with more body and a hint of smokiness flavor without being burnt. Consider the Caribou if you like a cleaner flavor profile with a confident but not very bold dark roasted cup.

Both Caribou and Tully's French Roast K-Cups are available at Coffee Wiz

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Posted by Scott Martin at July 24, 2007 8:35 AM
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Recent Comments
Scott Martin: Erik, Answering a few questions: So the whirring is definitely read more
Erik G.: Nice review! Just a couple of questions though. How hot read more
Scott Martin: SH, Excellent question - added a section to the review read more
SH: What about machine sound/vibration during the brew process? If it read more
Ironpeddler: Looks like the espresso capsules are different than the current read more
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