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Best Instant Coffee

l
lalagirl Jul 26, 2006 11:53 AM

I know this is a pretty profane subject for anyone who appreciates well-brewed coffee, but I'm curious: what's the best instant coffee out there?

(To defend myself here...it's an easy alternative to brewed when it comes to making a quick iced coffee)

  1. sandrina Jul 26, 2006 06:44 PM

    When I'm in a rush for a quickie cup of coffee, I reach for Taster's Choice. I've never tried it in iced coffee though. I have had it as a Cafe con Leche, and it's not that bad at that. The flavor is not as strong, but it does it's trick.

    1 Reply
    1. re: sandrina
      b
      bob192 Jul 27, 2006 02:34 AM

      The Taster's Choice Gourmet Roast (mine is brewed w/ rather much more than recommended) tastes better than the red label 'regular' but Medaglia d'Oro (sp?) is better still.

    2. Bill on Capitol Hill Jul 26, 2006 11:06 PM

      One of Nicholson Baker's little novels -- "Room Temperature," I think -- has a wonderful little passage about his father's recipe for iced instant coffee with milk, and his dreams of someday canning it under the name Cafe Ole.

      1. Non Cognomina Jul 26, 2006 11:08 PM

        Not exactly instant coffee, but Coffee Toddy makes a "pouch" of cold brew that can be used to make hot or iced coffee. My mom is a big fan of cold brewed coffee (it extracts less acid which is more gentle on her sensitive tummy). She recently tried the new packaged cold brew coffee, and loves it!

        Here are links:

        http://www.toddycafe.com/shop/product.php?productId=79

        http://www.toddycafe.com/

        2 Replies
        1. re: Non Cognomina
          Bill on Capitol Hill Jul 26, 2006 11:24 PM

          Toddy coffee is WONDERFUL for the iced stuff -- its low acidity translates much better to iced coffee than to hot coffee.

          1. re: Bill on Capitol Hill
            d
            Darren72 Jul 26, 2006 11:33 PM

            But it is far from instant. :)

        2. galleygirl Jul 27, 2006 12:48 PM

          Medaglio d'Oro, instant espresso. Just mix it up like regular instant. A can got me thru China, back when coffe was tough to find there....

          3 Replies
          1. re: galleygirl
            hertzdonut Jul 28, 2006 04:42 AM

            I second the madaglia d'oro instant. I love it bitter and thick with a twist of lemon. Doesn't taste good necessarily, but it will do if circumstances warrant.

            1. re: hertzdonut
              b
              budlit Sep 23, 2007 05:11 PM

              yeah, me too

              1. re: hertzdonut
                f
                FrankJBN Jun 29, 2012 12:39 PM

                "Doesn't taste good necessarily"

                And this is what you recommend? Hell, I want some - but only if you can guarantee it doesn't taste good most of the time.

            2. l
              leeds Jul 27, 2006 03:10 PM

              Where do you buy the instant espresso? I've looked for it before.

              1 Reply
              1. re: leeds
                b
                budlit Sep 23, 2007 05:11 PM

                gelsons

              2. p
                Peter Cherches Jul 27, 2006 08:31 PM

                12 years ago, when I was planning a trip to China and fearing coffee deprivation I found coffee bags with ground French roast coffee (not instant of freeze-dried, like Folger's) that worked remarkably well. They were made in Canada, but I can't remember the brand. They were perfect for the trip. I carried a travel mug, and hot water is omnipresent in China.

                http://petercherches.blogspot.com

                1. m
                  monday Jul 27, 2006 11:26 PM

                  On a trip to Mexico years ago, I was appalled when my hosts placed a jar of instant coffee on the table in the morning. I didn't know how I would survive 10 days on weak, instant coffee. I was shocked when the stuff was palatable. It was instant made by Nescafe but for the Mexican market. It's darker, stronger and richer than the instant that is made for the U.S. I usually keep it around the house for emergencies (I'm out at the moment).

                  It comes in a dark brown jar, and is sold in most Latino markets that I've been in. In San Francisco, you can even get it at Safeway. Look for the Spanish label.

                  9 Replies
                  1. re: monday
                    sandrina Jul 28, 2006 03:15 AM

                    This Nescafe is the same that I've had on trips to Ecuador. As a matter of fact, when family visits us here in the U.S., my dad always requests the Nescafe and they bring it to him. I've found this product in my area of Jackson Heights and it's also good for cafe con leche. That was our traditional Ecuadorean breakfast, cafe con leche along with some form of freshly baked buttered bread or sweet bread. Even the butter tastes better there.

                    1. re: sandrina
                      Snackish Sep 23, 2007 05:05 PM

                      It is called Nescafe Clasico in Spanish-speaking countries. I drink it all the time at work (usually iced) because it is quick and easy and our cafeteria charges $1.60 for watered-down Starbucks coffee.

                      1. re: Snackish
                        ipsedixit Jun 30, 2011 09:00 AM

                        Yes, NesCafe is terrific.

                        I make sure my aunt brings me some every time she visits from San Paulo. They now have individual serving packets (a al Starbucks Via), which is really convenient when I travel for work and need a quick cup of joe.

                        1. re: ipsedixit
                          rworange Jun 30, 2011 08:18 PM

                          Ick.

                          I just spent a year in coffee hell in Guatemala where about the only coffee anyone drinks is the bland and tasteless Nescafe Clasico. Some might call the flavor smooth. I despise the stuff. If I never drink it again, it will be too soon.

                          If one must drink instant coffee, Tasters Choice (also owned by Nestle) is still the best to me and they also have single serve packets. Couldn't convert my Gautemalan family to TC . it tasted too much like coffee.

                          1. re: rworange
                            r
                            rlinnington Jun 30, 2011 10:14 PM

                            omg poor you, why did you have to spend a year there again?

                            1. re: rlinnington
                              rworange Jul 1, 2011 07:26 AM

                              To get rest from US snark

                            2. re: rworange
                              ipsedixit Jul 1, 2011 10:11 AM

                              Different strokes for different folks I guess.

                              I've always found Tasters Choice insipid to me.

                              Perhaps you're just more evolved than me.

                              Oh well.

                              1. re: ipsedixit
                                rworange Jul 2, 2011 11:27 PM

                                Yep, definatly more evolved :--) ... imho

                              2. re: rworange
                                free sample addict aka Tracy L Jul 4, 2011 05:47 PM

                                Except for Panama, Nescafe was the only coffee available when I was visiting Central America. It was really disheartening because so much good coffee comes from that part of the world.

                      2. DanaB Jul 28, 2006 11:14 AM

                        Several posters on this thread already made the point, but I will take this chance to re-emphasize. The only instant coffee worth anything is Nescafe. In centers of the world touted for the best coffee on the planet, I've been served, in homes, Nescafe. I keep a jar of it around for when I've regretably forgotten to buy bean coffee to grind myself, or, more importantly, for when I'm so fricken busy that I actually forget to buy coffee (and yes, it happens). When it does, I can make a passable cup of joe with the Nescafe. It has the added effect of reminding me of my student days in
                        Europe, so that probably makes it taste better than it really does, but I'd never buy any other brand. Cudos if you go to a market that sells Nescafe which has a foreign language on the can. That's the better kind.

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: DanaB
                          MMRuth Jul 28, 2006 01:09 PM

                          I agree ... drinking some iced Nescafe right now.

                          1. re: DanaB
                            greygarious Sep 23, 2009 04:18 PM

                            I have never noticed Nescafe Clasico in my supermarket, but it hasn't been on my radar, either, I just placed an order at www.alice.com, which I learned about on the local TV news. It has free UPS shipping to the continental U.S. and purports to equal or beat the regular prices at average supermarkets. There is very little actual food other than cereal, snacks, and beverages. It's mostly household, pet, and personal care products but they do carry both regular and decaf Nescafe Clasico.

                          2. s
                            stonesoup Jul 28, 2006 05:06 PM

                            Tasters Choice is my pick, especially the decaf which is quite good and 'coffee-like.'

                            1. a
                              AquaW Jul 28, 2006 05:39 PM

                              Not instant in the purist sense... but I remember taster's choice or folgers once used to sell coffee in individually-sized bags (think teabags, but with coffee). I love those! Portable and a much better alternatively than the freeze-dried instant. I think they got discontinued though (oh well, I've since switched to just regularly-brewed stuff or the bottled stuff.)

                              1. r
                                rlinnington Jul 30, 2006 02:04 AM

                                Excellent instant coffees, though sadly to my knowledge not available in North America, only in Europe are:
                                Alta Rica (nescafe)
                                Cap Columbie (nescafe)
                                Kenjara (nescafe)

                                Alta Rica is very strong, dark roasted. Also just as excellent is Carte Noire, a brand popular in France (though it's made in Germany). Don't try serving these to your auntie from the farm in Iowa, she'll think you're trying to kill her.

                                Kenco in the UK also makes some excellent freeze-dried instants.

                                But all of these are pricey -- they're not your average North American's instant coffee -- they are premium, gourmet makes, often from single beans, and so you'll pay accordingly. These instants are so good that even though I enjoy coffee from my Delonghi, and my good old-fashioned flip-over caffeteria neapolitana that I bought while going to school in Italy, I also really enjoy these instants. But do you think I can even get another person here to even try a sip? Nope, their minds are closed based on what we have here. Might as well offer them a cup of boiled tripe (grin).

                                I know where they're coming from, though: I'm unable to drink unfortunately any instant I can find here in North America, even Taster's Choice. Just can't do it. North American instants are to European instants what white vinegar is to certified modena balsamic.

                                p.s. not trying to convert anyone to instant; I jealously guard mine as I have to reimburse friends the cost and postage to get these shipped over regularly. Just wanting to say, there's a whole different world of instant out there that we don't know about.

                                3 Replies
                                1. re: rlinnington
                                  k
                                  kopidunia Sep 22, 2007 09:03 AM

                                  The best instant coffee I know is Indonesian Nescafe classic. It tastes really diferent from any other instant or any other Nescafe for that matter.

                                  1. re: kopidunia
                                    g
                                    Geeyore Dec 24, 2009 05:59 AM

                                    The best instant I ever had was in 1997 in Bangkok, where the hotel restaurant was serving me a great cup of joe with breakfast every morning and I had no idea it was instant until the 3rd or 4th day. Turned about to be Nescafe instant, and I've been pining for it again ever since.

                                  2. re: rlinnington
                                    j
                                    japheth Aug 27, 2012 03:00 PM

                                    Thanks for the tip on European brands. Amazon now has Alta Rica, Cap Columbie, Carte Noire, and Kenco for sale in the US. I'm unable to find Kenjara on the Internet. I read somewhere that the entire Collections line has been discontinued. I wonder if what is on Amazon is the last of those products.

                                  3. YYZSolly Aug 4, 2006 10:55 PM

                                    I wholly agree with the above postings: Nescafe, made for the Mexican or any of the South American markets. As one who travels on business extensively internationally, I've come to learn that really good instant coffee is often the status quo.

                                    Seriously - Nescafe, especially in places like Colombia and Peru, is excellent.

                                    1. s
                                      smartie Sep 23, 2007 06:10 PM

                                      Gold Blend - I think made by Nescafe but only available in the UK. It is freeze dried granules. I have it brought over by whoever is coming to Florida.

                                      1. f
                                        foodperv Sep 23, 2007 06:16 PM

                                        i have tried many instant coffees have not found one yet that tastes fresh
                                        and does not have a funny taste
                                        maybe i am too fussy but....

                                        1 Reply
                                        1. re: foodperv
                                          Snackish Sep 24, 2007 08:11 AM

                                          It is never going to be the same as fresh, that's for sure.

                                        2. k
                                          Kelli2006 Sep 24, 2007 08:24 AM

                                          Ive given up on instant coffee, and replaced the crystals with individual bags that I can keep in a desk or my purse. It takes about the same time and the taste is superior.

                                          1. l
                                            latindancer Feb 23, 2009 11:22 AM

                                            Starbuck's coffee gives me a stomachache...the beans taste and smell like burnt rubber.
                                            I can't imagine what their instant coffee would do.

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: latindancer
                                              g
                                              gakski Apr 4, 2009 09:27 AM

                                              Nescafe Alta Rica from the UK is the best. Nescafe Costa Rican in Canada (no longer sold) was my second favorite.

                                            2. MsDiPesto Apr 6, 2009 01:47 PM

                                              The madaglia d'oro is my favored instant, but I can no longer find it in the domestic chains here in No. VA (Giant, Safeway, Harris Teeter, etc). I have only had success in the international supermarkets in the area. Not sure why this is, especially when I see the larger cans of madaglia d'oro on the shelves in those markets that don't carry the instant.

                                              1. b
                                                bevoost May 22, 2009 07:19 PM

                                                I belong to the small minority of those who prefer instant over freshly brewed. That being said, I strictly purchase Nescafe Clasico. My favourite <a href="http://www.bevoost.com/?p=662"&g... coffee recipe</a> is for Cafe Batido. Pour equal parts (e.g. 1 tablespoon) instant coffee and sugar into a cup. Add just a few drops of water or milk. It is very important not to add too much liquid! Rigorously stir for a few minutes until the mixture becomes a light-colored paste. Add hot water or milk, and foam will form at the top.

                                                1 Reply
                                                1. re: bevoost
                                                  l
                                                  lilmomma Aug 29, 2012 03:48 AM

                                                  THanks bevoost! I needed a recipe! WIll make this today!

                                                2. steakman55 May 23, 2009 01:49 PM

                                                  FWIT, Nescafe and Taster's Choice are both Nestle products.

                                                  1. q
                                                    qwertyu Aug 26, 2009 09:08 PM

                                                    I definitely agree on the Taster's Choice, however, only the vanilla and hazelnut. Unfortunately, they discontinued the canister!

                                                    1. c
                                                      Chefpaulo Aug 27, 2009 08:40 AM

                                                      It seems that Nescafe and Taster's Choice are the winners here. But, I'll have to go for Nescafe in that they seem to tailor their instants to local tastes. I was blown away by the superb dark, rich Nescafe instant I had during a few months in Egypt. The Ivory Coast was the country of origin and it was as good as any fresh brewed.

                                                      CP

                                                      1 Reply
                                                      1. re: Chefpaulo
                                                        p
                                                        Panini Guy Jan 24, 2010 03:05 PM

                                                        Ivory Coast gives you that double barrel of coffee goodness: pure low-grown robusta picked by slave labor!
                                                        http://www.highbeam.com/doc/1G1-75741...

                                                      2. krystle920 Sep 2, 2009 01:02 PM

                                                        Does anyone know where I can get Nescafe Clasico here in NY?

                                                        3 Replies
                                                        1. re: krystle920
                                                          g
                                                          gakski Sep 20, 2009 09:15 AM

                                                          Almost any supermarket catering to the Latin American community carries it.

                                                          1. re: krystle920
                                                            greygarious Sep 23, 2009 04:20 PM

                                                            As I posted upthread, a site called www.alice.com carries it, and has free UPS shipping.

                                                            1. re: krystle920
                                                              j
                                                              jasontay Apr 2, 2013 01:43 AM

                                                              Order it from Amazon?

                                                            2. r
                                                              Reesta Sep 10, 2009 10:58 AM

                                                              Starbucks now offers a great instant coffee, VIA. It's pricier & only comes in 2 flavors, Italian or Colombia, but it's much better than most that I've tried.

                                                              1 Reply
                                                              1. re: Reesta
                                                                GraydonCarter Jun 29, 2012 01:05 PM

                                                                Starbucks hardly needs us to promote their products here, but I'm just going to add that they have released several new products, including
                                                                Starbucks VIA Caramel
                                                                Starbucks Iced VIA
                                                                Starbucks VIA Decaf
                                                                Starbucks VIA French Roast

                                                              2. p
                                                                ptrichmondmike Sep 20, 2009 01:53 PM

                                                                No instant coffee except Nescafe Clasico ever passes my lips. It's very common here in N. California -- even some little non-Hispanic corner markets carry it.

                                                                1. k
                                                                  kino Oct 27, 2009 07:14 AM

                                                                  I love Nescafe Classico. I like how it gets foam up a little when mixing with hot water. Ive tried several instant coffee, but Nescafe is by far the best.

                                                                  1. Ima Wurdibitsch Oct 27, 2009 07:46 AM

                                                                    I recently found (and love) Café Bustelo instant coffee/espresso. Although a Cuban coffee, it was in the aisle at my local Publix grocery.

                                                                    While I prefer brewed coffee when I'm drinking it black, I fix my faux latte most mornings with some microwaved skim milk, instant coffee, and sugar-free syrups. It's my own venti, skinny, french vanilla latte at a fraction of the Starbucks cost and is very similar in taste. A friend had told me about doing her lattes this way and, I admit, I was VERY skeptical; however, I'm now a believer. ~shrug~ I suppose once you add milk and syrup to coffee, the actual taste of the coffee has pretty much been obliterated.

                                                                    1. b
                                                                      Beemazin Nov 1, 2009 03:19 AM

                                                                      I like the Starbucks instant coffee - it doesn't have any of that chemical taste and dissolves like no other - it takes little to no stirring in hot water and just a little stir in cold water (it also dissolves beautifully in milk - hot or cold). I'm a big hippie, so that it's all natural really wins points with me. I know that someone posted that they don't like SBux coffee in general, but I think it may be because you haven't tried the right roast/blend yet. There's really so many that had I not worked for the company I wouldn't have tried all of them.

                                                                      Before you get any ideas about me just being a brainwashed barista - I really have no loyalty to that company except for what it takes to get my paycheck. It's especially frustrating because I've tried so many other coffees out there and I have to say that as far as quality coffee goes, Starbucks may be it for me. Luckily I still keep my pride with the foods I eat - I won't touch theirs, ick.

                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                      1. re: Beemazin
                                                                        mcf Nov 3, 2009 01:42 PM

                                                                        Well, no, it's not for lack of trying that I don't like Sbx coffee. In the past, I've had a few that tasted ok, but for the most part, I thought the beans were usually over roasted and the coffees tasted burnt. OTOH, when traveling, I'd stop there because it was the only place that at least had a strong brew. Now that it tastes weak and bitter, you can't pay me to drink Sbx coffee ever again. If I wanted something that bad, I'd go to McDs or Dunkin Donuts.

                                                                        Having said that, I'm currently enjoying the under $5 a lb. organic coffee at Costco roasted for them by Sbx, but I get to control the brew. It's not as good as the Jim's Organic Ethiopian it replaced, but it's less than half the price and quite good.

                                                                        I don't think brewing weak coffee and selling instant is a step in the right direction for Sbx.

                                                                      2. c
                                                                        camper Nov 13, 2009 07:15 AM

                                                                        I love good coffee... I really dislike any coffee other than black... nothing in it except coffee.
                                                                        But this does remind me of the 60s on the graveyard shift factory I worked in. They had a coffee machine that dispensed cocoa and chicken soup too. I became somewhat addicted to the coffee machine instant I guess. So that even today I prefer instant when I am working in my shop. It is so different that is just... well... so different!
                                                                        Cant handle it for breakfast though

                                                                        1. e
                                                                          EdLagniappe Dec 13, 2009 01:22 AM

                                                                          Based on some of the comments, I figured I'd get some instant coffee for when I'm in a rush, or for cooking ... and got the 3 most recommended brands.

                                                                          All 3, Nescafe Clasico, Taster's Choice, and Medaglia d'Oro Espresso were all quite good & very rich. However, for me the Taster's Choice Gourmet Blend fell just short of the standard set by the other 2. But the Nescafe Clasico was a toss up w/ the Medaglia d'Oro ... and if you had to choose on price, then the Nescafe isn't quite as pricey. If you had to choose size of bottle ... well ... the Medaglia d'Oro only comes in a teensy bottle (here ... maybe you can do better), so I'd have to run to the store more often. But, if you are off camping & want a small bottle of very good coffee that packs tightly, then it would be the better choice.

                                                                          Of course, these are so close in quality, I can easily see why folks fall on different sides of the fence. That's why I've tried 'em side by side.

                                                                          So, just cuz it comes in a monster jar, at a moderate price AND is locally available, I'm leaning towards the Nescafe Clasico ... at least after the others are used up.

                                                                          Oh yeah ... the Taster's Choice doesn't dissolve quite as well as the others either ... it takes more stirring. You decide if that's good or bad.

                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                          1. re: EdLagniappe
                                                                            r
                                                                            ruvalsalam Dec 16, 2009 09:20 PM

                                                                            Hi, I remember Nescafe Instant Coffee from Mexico. It is no longer made, it came in glass jars with orange lids. It was better than the Nescafe Classico that replaced it. Back around 1981 when I found out it was being discontinued, I went to Mexico and bought a whole case, about 24 jars, of small jars. some of the jars have developed mold, because air got into them, but I love to smell the lids, it brings back fond memories. Even before it was discontinued, it was always in short supply, stores were constantly running out of it. I bet I’m the only person who still has a whole case.

                                                                            1. re: ruvalsalam
                                                                              d
                                                                              DCLERK Jun 29, 2012 11:14 AM

                                                                              Hello ruvalsalam - I share the same sentiments as you.
                                                                              It's hard to believe but I remember the wonderful smell of that coffee -
                                                                              Nescafe Instant and loved to smell the jar lids also. I could barely remember the year they were discontinued here in Trinidad, 1981? Wow!
                                                                              I have always missed this coffee which will for the rest of my life by the number 1 in my book.
                                                                              Please accept my email address akalloo@tstt.co.tt and send me yours so we can discuss further.

                                                                          2. k
                                                                            KDib May 28, 2010 01:19 PM

                                                                            I recently had a several cups of via and thought it was pretty solid. However, if you like something a little sweeter, perhaps instead of desert, try Fireside's carmel mochaccino: http://www.firesidecoffee.com/instant... Very tasty. Good with ice cream as well.

                                                                            1. c
                                                                              chosenone2006 Aug 25, 2010 03:22 PM

                                                                              The best instant coffee I had was a sample given to me by a healthy coffee company called Organo Gold, I dont know if anyone has heard of that company or not? But its pretty solid, taste great, and with the added health benefits I am sold!! I tried their Latte and Mocha instanst coffee, have not tried the black yet...........

                                                                              If anyone wants to check them out here is the website I ordered me a box from
                                                                              http://roben.organogold.com/imx_order...

                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                              1. re: chosenone2006
                                                                                g
                                                                                guilty Dec 27, 2010 03:32 PM

                                                                                I haven't heard of Organo Gold, but their description reminds me of that for CafeCeps, which also has medicinal mushrooms: http://madrelabs.com/cafeceps

                                                                                I got a free sample of CafeCeps and was blown away by the taste, so I bought a full container, which somehow wasn't quite as tasty (I think they changed the ratio of their robusta/arabica blend). However, I'm still happy to use it as coffee flavoring in food or drinks. For the record, this is basically a half-caff brew.

                                                                              2. greygarious Aug 25, 2010 05:35 PM

                                                                                I have to have decaf or sometimes half-caff coffee, which limits options considerably. For a long while I was buying Taster's Choice regular and decaf instant and mixing the two, before switching in the last couple of years to just the decaf. Acceptable at best. Finding myself at Costco in May, and having forgotten to get Taster's Choice at the supermarket, I bought Folger's instant decaf. WOW!!! FAR better than TC. I actually LIKE it, which says a lot for instant decaf.

                                                                                1. p
                                                                                  PAO Aug 25, 2010 05:53 PM

                                                                                  Haven't tried Starbucks yet, but the best I've had is from Tanzania and it's called Africafe. The smell is divine! I brought back several cans and bags and froze them and use them primarily for baking. That was several years ago. I now find you can buy it on Amazon! http://www.amazon.com/s/?ie=UTF8&keywords=africafe&tag=googhydr-20&index=aps&hvadid=1420801827&ref=pd_sl_86bjby81yw_e OR Internet order http://africafecoffee.com/.

                                                                                  4 Replies
                                                                                  1. re: PAO
                                                                                    k
                                                                                    Kevin K. Oct 10, 2010 08:10 AM

                                                                                    I've been following this topic with great interest. Nestle is an amazing company, and if you get on the Nescafé web site and go to "Worldwide" you can visit the sites for individual countries and see just how dialed-in the products are for each market.

                                                                                    We live in Mexico most of the year. I brought some Starbucks Via instant with me and ended up tasting it against the best of what's available locally, both instant and fresh-roasted. I've worked in the specialty coffee business as a buyer and taster for 28 years (even wrote a book on coffee, "Coffee Basics"), so needless to say I'm harder to please than most.

                                                                                    Clearly the best instant coffees are the super-premium Alta Rica and Kanjara only available in Europe, but even here in this third-world country the premium products (Diplomat and Ristreto) are excellent and the everyday Nescafé while low-grown tasting still is far superior to anything one can get in the U.S. except for Taster's Choice or the obscenely overpriced Via.

                                                                                    I posted some thoughts and my taste test results on a blog I do for local foods here at Lake Chapala:

                                                                                    http://eatinglocalatlakeside.blogspot...

                                                                                    1. re: Kevin K.
                                                                                      rworange Jan 12, 2011 08:13 AM

                                                                                      Interesting and thanks. I looked at the website and started anothor topic focused on Nestle
                                                                                      http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/759035

                                                                                      1. re: Kevin K.
                                                                                        s
                                                                                        stilldontknow May 19, 2011 06:25 AM

                                                                                        I'm surprised about the impression some have of Nescafe Alta Rica, Cap Colombe, Kenco, Carte Noir being super premium products. In the UK they're pretty standard and not sold at much of a premium above standard Nescafe or Maxwell House.

                                                                                        There's a reason why most UK household don't go to the palaver of freshly brewed coffee and that's the availabilty of lots of good, hassle free instants.

                                                                                        1. re: stilldontknow
                                                                                          k
                                                                                          Kevin K. May 19, 2011 08:52 AM

                                                                                          On their U.K. web site Nestle does indeed have a separate super premium classification for the Alta Rica, Colombian, etc:

                                                                                          http://www.nescafe.co.uk/products_fla...

                                                                                          Not to say these excellent products are a substitute for fresh-roasted single farm coffee, but as you say for a good cup of coffee without hassle they are great. For those interested, get on the Nescafe site and click on "worldwide" and you'll get a sense of the vast range of coffees they make only for specific markets. Unfortunately they don't think highly of the U.S. - heck they sell great coffee in the UK which has always had much worse coffee even than the States!. You can buy Alta Rica and Colombie via mail order check Amazon - but at a high price.

                                                                                    2. wekick Dec 28, 2010 04:55 AM

                                                                                      I very seldom drink instant so I like to have it in individual servings as it stays fresher. Right now I have Taster's Choice Colombian Gourmet and it is not bad. I might go to the international grocery store and try some of the others recommended.

                                                                                      1. l
                                                                                        lightstays Jan 10, 2011 05:49 PM

                                                                                        My question is this: Is Nescafe Classico which you can now buy in most urban supermarkets in the US the same as you get the south of the border?

                                                                                        I'm looking to match whatever the recipe they use for Moroccan Nescafe, which is like 80% robusta, unbelievably tasty, and make Starbucks look like the joke that it is.

                                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                                        1. re: lightstays
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                                                                                          Panini Guy Jan 11, 2011 05:35 PM

                                                                                          Careful on that. If it's 80% robusta and you think it tastes good, you need to find out where that robusta is coming from. Not all robusta (or arabica) is equal. India grows some robusta that's quite palatable and there's some OK stuff in Brazil, but the stuff from Vietnam and Africa typically tastes like licking a tire.

                                                                                          1. re: Panini Guy
                                                                                            l
                                                                                            lightstays Jan 12, 2011 06:44 AM

                                                                                            Moroccan Nescafe is Indonesian robusta--black, bitter, and kicking.

                                                                                        2. l
                                                                                          lagatta Jan 12, 2011 01:40 PM

                                                                                          I've noticed Nescafé instant espresso here in Montréal, in ordinary supermarkets, not gourmet shops. It seems to come from France. Has anyone had it, and have any comments positive or negative about it? I usually drink "real" (stovetop mocha) espresso but have been wondering if this is half decent for coffee emergencies.

                                                                                          1. h
                                                                                            HillJ Jan 12, 2011 02:05 PM

                                                                                            http://www.vietnamese-coffee.com/coff...

                                                                                            One of my relatives turned me onto this brand for instant. If you don't mind a mail order instant, this one is fantastic. G7!

                                                                                            1. arktos May 19, 2011 10:54 AM

                                                                                              Trader Joe's Columbian. Suprisingly good!

                                                                                              1. r
                                                                                                rlinnington May 19, 2011 11:05 AM

                                                                                                There are some surprisingly good instants out there, despite what "foodie" consumers in North America think. Here's a piece that talks about that: http://www.cooksinfo.com/instant-coffee

                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                1. re: rlinnington
                                                                                                  p
                                                                                                  Panini Guy Jun 30, 2011 08:11 AM

                                                                                                  That's a funny site. They have no idea what espresso is.

                                                                                                2. p
                                                                                                  pgoodwin1 Jun 23, 2011 09:16 AM

                                                                                                  Has anybody tried Superior Coffee - Freeze Dried Coffee?

                                                                                                  Also - I just ordered the Clasico from Amazon to try. Thanks for the info. It was way less expensive than the Taster's Choice. - their price is up by > 20% in the last 3 months. In April I got 3 x 10 oz Taster's Choice for $34.22, today it's $40.86. The Clasico was only $15.39 for 2 x 10.5 oz jars

                                                                                                  Hope I like it as much as the Taster's Choice

                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                  1. re: pgoodwin1
                                                                                                    p
                                                                                                    pgoodwin1 Jun 30, 2011 08:32 AM

                                                                                                    The Clasico is pretty good. Worth the money. I still like Taster's Choice a little better. Using one rounded small white plastic spoon full, the Clasico is a little stronger

                                                                                                  2. r
                                                                                                    RedTop Jul 13, 2012 08:53 AM

                                                                                                    A Greek friend of mine owns a canteen here in town. When I mentioned this thread to him, he told me he would get me a cannister of Nescafe blended for sale in Greece. In my pantry now, waiting for first use.

                                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                                    1. re: RedTop
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                                                                                                      lilmomma Aug 29, 2012 03:55 AM

                                                                                                      I am going to look for the nescafe classico at my local shop and save. They have a lot of Latin products. Hope to find it!

                                                                                                    2. m
                                                                                                      MsJunsu Aug 29, 2012 10:13 AM

                                                                                                      Starbuck's VIA is pretty good. In fact, I think their instant coffee tastes much better than their brewed coffee.

                                                                                                      3 Replies
                                                                                                      1. re: MsJunsu
                                                                                                        r
                                                                                                        rlinnington Aug 29, 2012 12:42 PM

                                                                                                        Found it interesting that Julia Child always kept instant coffee on hand. She used it in a few recipes such as http://www.rushhour.org/chocolate-cake-recipe/ , and would serve it occasionally at least to visitors. https://twitter.com/therealsager/stat...

                                                                                                        1. re: MsJunsu
                                                                                                          Ruthie789 Sep 7, 2012 03:57 PM

                                                                                                          Agree I like the single serving packages, very convenient for the workplace.

                                                                                                          1. re: MsJunsu
                                                                                                            m
                                                                                                            MsJunsu Sep 12, 2012 02:54 PM

                                                                                                            I'd like to clarify that starbucks instant coffee is technically coffee beans microground or something like that*.. in other words, it doesnt dissolve completely and if you're like me you'll be able to feel the tiny granules.. This was important for baking, as carbohydrates (like cake) dissolve but coffee beans do not (so my mocha cake left a grainy after-texture - though whether or not you can actually feel it is up to the individual; my sister didnt seem to notice or mind). Still, like i said, i like their instant coffee much better than their brewed.

                                                                                                            I'm going to try looking for Medaglia d'Oro Instant Espresso and/or Nescafe Clasico next, since I've started school again and I'll need instant coffee for when I dont have time to make stovetop 'espresso' D: I may also try the Trader Joes instant coffee (altho i havent seen it the last few times i went). I'll update with my thoughts :)

                                                                                                            *Disclaimer: i dont know how other instant coffees are made but in my limited experience all other brands dissolved completely

                                                                                                          2. Ruthie789 Aug 29, 2012 02:49 PM

                                                                                                            Van Houte instant coffee is quite good.

                                                                                                            1. GraydonCarter Apr 22, 2013 12:50 PM

                                                                                                              In an NPR report this morning, Durham's Counter Culture Coffee reports, "the large proportion of coffee growers drink instant coffee, even on some of these idyllic hillsides in Central America." Instead of drinking their own top-quality coffee, they export it to people who can pay more for it, such as Europeans or Americans.

                                                                                                              1. b
                                                                                                                Bryan Pepperseed Apr 1, 2014 04:58 AM

                                                                                                                Haven't really tried enough brands to have an opinion, but thought I'd chime in to pass on a rumor...
                                                                                                                Not long ago I was in my local supermarket and overheard a "stock boy" tell another customer that soon there will be no instant coffee - he said that manufacturers are going to stop making it because todays younger generation has no idea what it is and don't buy it.
                                                                                                                Like I said, just a rumor, but that's what he said.

                                                                                                                1. r
                                                                                                                  RandalOulton Apr 5, 2014 05:19 AM

                                                                                                                  BBC article today I found interesting on the topic of instant coffee:

                                                                                                                  Why do Brits drink so much instant coffee?

                                                                                                                  http://www.bbc.com/news/blogs-magazin...

                                                                                                                   
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