I was shopping for groceries at Trader Joe’s recently when I came across the Trader Joe’s Pour-Over Coffee Brewer. This is a small packet which contains, according to the label, a dark medium roast promising notes of nuts and dark chocolate. It also said that this mini-brewer makes enough coffee for about two cups with the same “rich taste of a French press.” It was only $1.79, and I was curious about its potential usefulness while camping, so I thought I’d give it a try.
If you’ve ever made a cup of coffee with the pour-over method (and, of course, you should), making coffee with the pour-over coffee brewer is pretty similar. But just in case you’re new to this process, there are handy instructions printed right on the back, complete with a cute little instructional pictogram.
It’s as simple as opening up the bag and adding 10-12 ounces of hot water. The bottom of the bag is gusseted, so it’s a self-standing unit (which is nice). After adding the water, simply close the bag (using the handy zipper-type seal), let it sit for four minutes, then pour it into your favorite mug or coffee cup.
As for the coffee itself, it’s not bad, although I can’t say the notes of nuts and dark chocolate promised by the marketing copy came through when I drank it. But I did find it much more more satisfying than a Starbucks Via (my usual emergency coffee solution).
So while it isn’t going to be replacing my regular cup of morning coffee, it’s not a bad choice when you need an easy on-the-go coffee solution, like when you’re traveling or camping. And while it’s a bit bulky to be dragging along on an extended hike, I’d consider stuffing a few of these into my backpack to enjoy on an extended weekend hike.