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Oct 16, 2012 06:50 AM

What's the best supermarket coffee for home brewing?

I've been using the "8 o'clock" brand of coffee because it's low in acid and not expensive, but I'm getting tired of it's tobacco like flavor.
I'll occasionally get better coffee like "Intelligentsia" but it's pricey for everyday use. I'd like something smooth, not bitter, not flinty, rich and deep flavored, but also not expensive. Something I would find in my local supermarket.
Any thoughts?

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  1. I think Dunkin Donuts is not bad and the price is ok, especially when you can get it on sale. I also get a store brand's organic and/or "gold" line. (I live in Michigan, so we get Meijer.) I think the turnover in bigger stores results in fresher coffee. One other thing I look for is local roasters who will sell in grocery stores. Again SE Michigan, where we are able to get Zingerman's, Cafe Espresso, Biggby, and other local and state-wide roasters. Those are usually at higher-end grocery stores.

    1. Target's brand called Archer Farms was said to have the best coffee, this in an article in The New York Times a couple of years ago. If my memory serves me correctly, Target began buying small coffee bean farm (or contracting with the farmers) with the highest bean rating.
      I started buying it then - comes in whole bean or ground and also comes in different strengths.

      my household prefered Dunkin Donuts or Foldgers and still like these brands but do like the Target brand better. I bought an inexpensive coffee grinder and buy the whole bean variety which probably helps.

      4 Replies
      1. re: jhk4

        Dunkin Donuts has been rated worst quality beans and coffee, but CI, IIRC. I can't drink it at all, since long before I read that.

        Edit: My primary recco if you're buying supermarket coffee is to avoid cans at all costs; the coffee goes through a process called "pre staling" so that moisture in the coffee doesn't corrode the can. Coffee in a bag, with a date and a gas valve would guide my choices.

        1. re: mcf

          Ditto the coffee in a bag with a gas valve. And ditto the comment re: Dunkin's coffee. Cannot drink it.

          Also agree with buying coffee in whole bean form and grinding it yourself in smaller batches. I freeze the beans and put some in a small ziplock bag in my fridge which I grind about 1-2x a week.

            1. re: grampart

              I've been doing it for years. Considering I'm not a coffee aficionado / connosieur but like certain types of coffee beans, I'm fine with it. :-)

      2. I second the Dunkin Donuts recommendation. I also recommend grinding it yourself from whole bean.

        4 Replies
        1. re: sheilal

          I read a years-old comment about Dunkin Donuts on another thread, where the poster had done some personal comparisons, including Dunkin Donuts whole bean and Dunkin Donuts ground. And for their preferences, the ready-ground DD beat the whole bean. Defies conventional wisdom, I think. So, before I spend the bucks to buy a bag of ground DD (I wish my whole bean grind at home tasted more like the DD shop, but I keep trying!!), I thought I'd ask another DD fan-what do you think: whole bean vs. ground? Thanks,

          1. re: Florida Hound

            I prefer the whole bean DD to pre-ground DD. I did my own comparison 3 or 4 years ago, so I don't really remember the reason why I picked the bean. Also, the size of my grind also affects the flavor too. Often times I grind to fine espresso and sometimes a chunkier grind - depends on how I'm brewing it.

            1. re: sheilal

              Thanks, sheilal! I'm still working through a big bag of Eight O'Clock 100% Columbian before I pick up some more DD. But a couple of weeks from now I will keep on trying to get just the right flavor out of those whole DD beans, rather than the pre-ground. I appreciate your recommendation.

              1. re: Florida Hound

                Eight O'Clock coffee is my backup if DD isn't available. I especially like it for cold brewed french pressed coffee.

          1. If your choice of local markets includes Costco, they have a pretty good selection of coffee, all of which is well-priced. I love their Mayorga brand coffee, but it's not available everywhere. Their house brand is roasted for them by Starbucks, so if you like Starbucks coffee, that is a very economical way to get it. My Costco carries actual Starbucks coffee too, which I don't care for but I know many do.