One of the biggest complaints about K-cups is that they create a lot of waste. Coffee itself is compostable, and is actually great for enriching a garden, but the little plastic cup that makes the k-cup so useful when it comes to making a quick cup of coffee isn’t great for the environment. There has long been a call for someone to create a more eco-friendly k-cup and EcoCup is the first one to be widely released.
A Canadian company, Mother Parkers Tea and Coffee, has launched the EcoCup, a clear, recyclable pod that they hope will have appeal to consumers that less environmentally friendly pods don’t. They’re going to launch them in the next couple of weeks, filled with their Higgins & Burke tea, and will increase the tea brands that they use with the pods throughout the remainder of the year. Coffee pods are planned to launch next year. The cups and coffee are recyclable, but the lid and filter materials used in the EcoCups are not, but it is still a big improvement over the less eco-friendly alternative for consumers looking for convenience with a hint of green.
Chicory is a root that has been roasted, brewed and used as an inexpensive coffee substitute for many, many years, but the most notable modern example of chicory use is in the coffee and chicory blend that is a staple for many New Orleans residents and Mardi Gras-goers every year. It’s a unique drink that becomes addictive once you’ve aquired a taste for it – and it is something that can be hard to find outside of New Orleans – especially if you want to make yours with high quality, freshly roasted chicory (just like your coffee beans!). Blue Bottle Coffee offers a New Orleans Iced Kit that will allow you to make your own delicious New Orleans-style coffee and chicory coffee blend at home. The kit includes their signature recipe, a pound of Blue Bottle’s New Orleans coffee blend and an envelope of pre-measured, roasted French chicory that is scaled for one pound of coffee. You will need to add your own milk, sugar, and ice to finish the recipe and complete your drink. BB recommends whole milk and organic sugar, which is what they use to make the drink themselves. It’s a taste of New Orleans (or at least, a taste of New Orleans via the SF Bay Area!) at home.
Many people take their tea with a squeeze of lemon and this Lemon Tea Infuser lets you do that very literally! The silicone infuser is made in the shape of a lemon wedge. The wedge pops open to reveal a pocket where you can pack it full of your favorite loose leaf tea. Simply pop the wedge into your mug of hot water and allow it to steep until your brew is perfect, then scoop out the lemon wedge (and replace it with a real one, for some actual lemon flavor!) and enjoy. The wedge is functional and very cute. Since it comes apart, it is easy to remove the tea leaves when you’re finished brewing. It is small enough to hand-wash very easily, but it also happens to be dishwasher safe if you have room to tuck it in before your run your next load.
Coffee made with the pour-over technique consistently produces brighter, more flavorful coffee than you can get from a regular drip coffee machine. The technique isn’t quite as easy as it sounds, however, and you need to be patient while preparing a cup and you can only brew one cup at a time. It’s great when you have a few minutes to spare, but there are times when you just need to be a little bit more efficient – like those times when you are trying to prepare coffee or two or three guests at once.
Bodum b.Over Coffee Brewer is a stylish new coffee maker from Bodum that is designed to deliver high quality, pour-over coffee in quantities up to 40-oz. The coffee maker automates the pour-over process using a unique shower-head design that evenly distributes hot water over the grounds in the filter portion of the machine. The coffee brews and drips down into a vacuum-sealed, vacuum-sealed, double-walled carafe that will keep your flavorful coffee hot and aromatic for hours without requiring any reheating. For me, being able to brew great coffee in larger quantities is a huge time saver for days when I’m rushing around from project to project.