Sunday, August 03, 2008


Do you drink espresso? Do you pay attention to the latest snobbery surrounding espresso? Machines, shops, mugs, beans, brewing times, etc etc etc? Then you've heard it said that the sign of a good espresso is the crema - the foamy, beige stuff that floats on top of your shot o' concentrated caffeine.

Well I've got news for you, bucko. Why pay through the nose for 1 oz of high-pressure bean extract when you can have a mugful for cheap? Behold!

My instant coffee has a crema! Granted, it's not flawless what with the oil bubbles, but it does have that "tiger striping" so coveted by the espresso drinker in the know and . . .

Do I detect the sound of massive screeching brakes being applied? Perhaps you, faithful reader, are aghast at my comparison of instant coffee to espresso. How can you drink that swill, you may ask? Believe me, I asked myself the same thing when I bought it for a backpacking trip - but this ain't your grandpappy's Taster's Choice.

This is coffee extruded from the veins of 100% Columbians (and then subsequently freeze-dried). I give you . . .

Trader Joe's 100% Columbian Instant Coffee. Try it and you'll see. Depending on the volume of "grounds" you add to the water, it's just like drinking an entire mug of espresso - only with less jitters (and cost). Granted, my viewpoint may be a bit skewed since I'm on my third cup of the day, but nevertheless - this calls for a side-by-side comparison!

Next steps: making an instant coffee cappuccino. Or Insta-Cap.