Single Cup Coup

Once upon a time I worked at a very hip, quite awesome advertising agency. Aside from the lovely bright decorating scheme of the place, and the jars of candy everywhere, we also had a very sharp coffee maker that was cutting edge (at the time). Today they’re a little more prevalent, but in case you or your caffeine-craving buddies haven’t heard about it, I’m talking about K-Cup technology.

What is a K-Cup you ask? Basically they’re little tubs of ready-to-go coffee. You pop one into your K-Cup compatible coffee machine and within a minute you’ve got a steaming hot cup of brew that tastes just like its been percolating for the many minutes a regular pot of java will take. This is not your typical instant coffee.

There is more to K-Cups than just coffee however. You can also get a wide variety of teas, hot chocolates, and other specialty beverages. Timothy’s World Coffee offers the widest variety of choices, but there are many other familiar and new coffee brands that have joined up to offer you pretty much any kind of beverage you want – flavoured coffee, dark espresso, fruity teas, and more.

With K-Cups, you actually buy them in boxes that include around 24 little tubs, for 24 cups of joe. It actually happens to be a cost-friendly, and relatively eco-friendly, solution because you only make as much coffee as you need, meaning you won’t be tossing a half-full, totally cold pot out every morning. The packaging is pretty limited as well – although it’d be great if the K-Cup producers of the world could put together a compost or recycling-friendly product.

K-Cup machines – produced by brand leader Keurig –  are relatively easy to find these days, but you can also find a select number of eTailers based in Canada – such as – that sell everything you need to set up a cup-a-day coffee shop in your home. A box of 18-25 K-Cups will cost around $15, while an actual coffee maker ranges from $100 to $300, depending on what model you choose. actually offers free shipping in Canada with any purchases over $45, so consider stocking up on coffee (and a machine, if necessary) on a bulk basis.

A coffee gift is obviously ideal for a coffee lover, but I find this sort of thing really appeals to a slightly older set (despite the young skew of my former office). It’s a great Christmas or special Anniversary gift for your parents or the in-laws, or if you know a couple that’s about to get married and loves their daily caffeine fix, it’s an appropriately priced wedding gift as well. It also works as a godsend gift for a single friend or sibling as a celebration of the fact they really just need to make one cup at a time.

Feel free to call around locally – many ‘everything’ stores like the Wal-Marts and Home Outfitters of the world will have a Keurig coffee maker (although not necessarily the K-Cups). My workplace used a local company to buy everything we needed for our in-house coffee shop, and chances are if you’re in a major city there’s a supplier that can home deliver to you also. Bottoms up kids!

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