How much for your daily caffeine shot?
With pundits expecting a double dip recession and no end in sight for the current credit crunch, your daily caffeine shot is an important morale booster during these January days of doom and gloom!
So how much does a coffee cost and what do you get for your money?
Well visit any one of the High Street gourmet coffee bars and you can expect to pay £1-99 > £3.99 for a large and frothy coffee, with all manner of sprinkles and syrup flavourings….choose to drink at home and not only can you experiment and get more creative, you can also save time and money!
Cheapest isn’t however the best solution…with coffee you certainly get what you pay for!
Entry level for a cup of something resembling coffee at home is Tesco Value Granules! At 47p / 100g it is an amazing price…but it genuinely is too good to be true! Okay, the price reflects the fact that it is used as a lost leader, but the quality of beans used and extraction levels achieved to manufacture this product mean you can expect a harsh, bitter and caramelised taste and nothing more. But assuming a 2.5 g dose per cup at 1.2p / cup it certainly is cheap!
Nescafe Original (again an agglomerated granule) is next and at £2.68 per jar, doesn’t really offer a massive leap in quality, but costs significantly more at c 6.75 p /cup…. Nescafe Gold Bend (now we are into Freeze Dried – which offers a superior, finer coffee taste experience) retails at £3.28 / 100g realising a cup cost of 8.2 p and finally we have Alta Rica…which genuinely is the best instant coffee you can buy ( although it pains me to admit a large corporate has got something right!) which at a retail of £3.99 makes for a cup cost of 10p.
Next up we have roast and ground coffees….typically today prepared through a French Press or perhaps you still have a Morphy Richards filter machine! (No surely not!!) Prices here vary from £1.69 for the Tesco 227g Value line, which at a 7 > 8g dose(allowing for wastage) equates to a cup cost of 6p, through to Tesco Espresso and Fair Trade R&G @ 11p per cup.
Feeling flush? Then perhaps you will choose a brand? Taylors range retails around the £3.29 mark with an associated cup cost at 12p and the much over rated Percol range gets up to £3.89 for 227g with a cup cost of nearly 14p!
I suppose the beauty of soluble and roast and ground is that the equipment cost (on a per cup basis) is negligible for a kettle and French Press or cafetiere… Once we move into beans, pods and capsules equipment prices rack up, although per cup costs remain low on an amortised basis… and of course you have the show off gadget value too!
I really am not clear why beans are so popular at home!
A bean to cup machine is expensive and a nightmare to service and clean! On top of this, the cuppage you are likely to achieve in home means that the beans will be stale by the time you re fill the hopper! Still there is no accounting for taste… and Illy are able to flog 250g of espresso beans for £5.89! A massive margin for all in the supply chain and an approximate cup cost (excluding the cost of equipment) of c 17p
Similarly, Nestle’s Dolce Gusto and Nespresso represent the easiest method yet known to man of creating a money printing machine!
With capsule prices ranging from 24p to near enough 40p per cup…you really do need your head testing to buy into this craze! Yes, the coffee tastes good and performs consistently well… but you are paying for the marketing and beautiful packaging…no need therefore to worry about the environmental impact and carbon footprint of each capsule, or the fact that you are paying more for just 5 > 6 g of coffee…less than the traditional and typical espresso doe of 7 > 8 g!
With pod prices from c 15p you are guaranteed to get fresh, great tasting espresso each and every time…with no mess, no fuss and no waste! Plus you are being kind the environment as each ESE espresso pod is compostable and has a fraction of the carbon foot print of the new craze capsules!
It really is that easy….. And experimenting – especially with Aromo’s ‘Mixed Up’ ESE espresso pack couldn’t be simpler and cheaper!