Have you ever used Kickstarter? If not, check it out, there are some really good projects to be funded. We recently helped fund Jiva Cubes and just got our "reward" i.e. a sample of the product. Their goal was to create a hand-crafted instant coffee cube from a single source. The coffee (Colombian Arabica) is fair trade and the cubes contain raw, unrefined Cane sugar. The cube is individually packaged. We picked the reward that offered us a taste of their regular coffee and their mocha flavor.
They arrived last week like a little surprise out of no where. The package contained two small burlap bags with 4 cubes each.
The package was easy to open but not so easy that it would open in my bag if I took it to go.
I am more of a latte drinker so I made it with steamed milk instead of hot water. Dropping one cube into my hot milk, it started to dissolve almost immediately.
The dissolving wasn't completely instant though. I had to stir for about 45 seconds. When I put a couple of drops of boiling water over the cube, it dissolved more quickly but I didn't want to dilute the milk or coffee so I just kept stirring.
The result? I absolutely love this coffee. I am not a fan of instant but this was divine. Seriously this was on the same level of yumminess as my espresso maker coffee. Yep, it is that good. The sugar was a perfect ratio so all I added was milk. A full mug (12 oz) required two cubes and since it isn't decaf I am sticking to only one cup with one cube a day.
During the second day of my testing, using a regular cube, I found the 45 to 60 seconds of stirring to be very contemplative. It was a few moments just for me. I know it wasn't intentional but being forced to slow down for a few seconds because it wasn't instant helped set the pace for my entire day. We took a few extra moments and just enjoyed ourselves in everything we did. It was a great day. Did the coffee do it? No but it helped everything get off to a good start.
The regular was just as perfect as the mocha. It was just sweet enough without being too much or too little. There was no bitterness and the cup was rich and creamy. Again, a perfect cup of coffee. My husband says that to him it smelled like instant but tasted great. I don't think it smelled like instant coffee.
Now that a couple of days have passed, I have consumed all four mocha and have only one regular remaining. I ordered more and hope they won't take too long to get here. (I should order more before I drink them all. Alas my sleep deprived brain cannot remember to do that. Story of my life. Insert sigh and move on.)
The coffee is not organic. According to the website, the organic version should be available in spring 2013. The coffee is fair trade and from a single source though. I can't wait for the organic decaf mocha version. The decaf version is currently in the works.
UPDATE: The decaf version is pretty good but the hazelnut version is fantastic!