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Keurig: K-Cup & Vue

May 20, 2013
Snapple Peach Iced Tea K-Cup



Snapple K-Cups have finally arrived and are available at a store near you!  There are three flavors available, for now, and they are Lemon, Raspberry and Peach.  Today I bring you my review of the Peach Iced Tea.  I had high hopes for this K-Cup but, unfortunately, it didn't quite deliver.  This K-Cup has a super-peachy flavor but there is just too much sweetness, for my taste.  Also it's suppose to have a mix of green and black teas but I could only taste peach and sugar.  Maybe brewing it at a smaller size than 6oz. will help reveal more of the tea flavors.  Either way this isn't a K-Cup that I would buy again but I am still looking forward to trying the lemon and raspberry versions. 





March 21, 2013

Celestial Seasonings Sweet Raspberry Perfect Iced Tea K-Cup



Raspberry is one of my favorite fruits and I must say that this K-Cup is really fabulous.  It's sweetened with a combination of cane juice and Stevia and it doesn't have that fake sweetener taste that some iced tea mixes have.  I can also taste the black tea as the raspberry flavoring is strong enough but not so strong that it overpowers the tea flavor.  To me, this K-Cup tastes best when brewed at the 4oz. size because otherwise it can taste a bit watered down, especially if you like it nice and cold, like I do, and use 5 or 6 large ice cubes.  This K-Cup would make Carol Channing proud!




March 21, 2013
Green Mountain Dark Magic K-Cup



This is a K-Cup that I have loved for a long time.  It's one of the most popular dark roast K-Cups and there's a good reason for that - it's darn yummy!  Not bitter and it has a nice full-bodied flavor with hints of chocolate.  What's not to love about that right?  Great as a K-Cup and even better as a Vue Pack (scroll down further to find my review of this in a Vue Pack). Dark Magic has cast it's spell upon me - DELISH!


March 19, 2013
Green Mountain Special Reserve Colombia Geisha K-Cup




Now this is one pretty looking K-Cup - love the reflective gold foil.  Considering how expensive these K-Cups are though, the foil better be made out of gold leaf!  This is the first, and hopefully not the last, K-Cup released in the "Special Reserve" line of rare and limited-supply coffees.  This is the Colombia Geisha which is a light roast coffee that is produced from the Geisha varietal coffee been.  Now that probably doesn't mean much to you, or for me for that matter, but simply put this means this coffee is EXPENSIVE!  A box of 18 K-Cups is $27!  ZOWEE!  Is it worth it - YES!  I love this coffee and it has one of the most unique flavors.  It even comes with a pamphlet of "Tasting Notes" explaining what types of flavors you should expect from this coffee.  There are hints of honey, blood orange, lime, juicy cherry, jasmine and bergamot.  Sounds like I'm describing a fruit salad but trust me...this coffee is DELISH!  If you like to sip and enjoy a great cup of coffee then go out and get this while you can.  It may be hard to find as it's not in stock any longer at Keurig.com or the Green Mountain website but you can still find a few boxes on eBay and Amazon.  Oh and please don't put cream in this coffee....you'll ruin it.  


March 19,2013
Green Mountain Naturals Lemonade K-Cup




Don't even bother reading this review...just go out now and buy this!  It's amazing!  I have never tasted a lemonade as good as this for a long time.  Country Time watch out 'cuz this lemonade is gonna kick your butt.  It's got the perfect combination of tartness and sweetness and it tastes like real squeezed lemonade.  I brew this at 6oz. into a glass with 5 or 6 ice cubes and voila...the most perfect, refreshing drink in less than 45 seconds.  I even take the K-Cup, after it's brewed, and cut off the lid and scoop out some of the remaining sugary granules that are inside.  They taste like Lemonheads candy!  


January 23, 2013

Cameron's Intense French Single Serve Coffees (otherwise known as a K-Cup)



I saw this at a Walmart in the Pittsburgh area a couple of weeks ago and since I love a good French Roast (it's my favorite type of coffee to drink) I just had to buy this and try it out.  If I recall it was less than $6 for a box of 12 "single serve coffees" which is a decent price.  These are one of the many knock-off K-Cups that are flooding the market now and they aren't officially licensed by Keurig and they cannot use the term "K-Cup" on the packaging. What the heck though, for this review I am calling them K-Cups (sue me Keurig but having to type "single serve coffees" each time will start to work my last nerve!)  As you can see from the pics, this isn't your typical K-Cup.  It's basically the inside of a K-Cup without the plastic housing and since the filter is exposed to air, they come sealed in a plastic bag.  Thankfully the bag is resealable so that will help to prolong the life of these K-Cups and they hopefully won't go stale too quickly.  Now on to the important part...the flavor.  I wasn't expecting much from these K-Cups but I was blown away by the aroma and flavor.  This is the real deal when it comes to a French Roast and they even surpass my current favorite French Roast by Starbucks.  The Starbucks French Roast is very good but sometimes I notice that it can have almost a harsh "bite" but I didn't experience any of that with the Cameron's Intense French.  It's got a really deep roasted flavor yet it is still smooth.  It's incredibly fabulous! If you love dark roast coffee you owe it to yourself to try Cameron's Intense French . Love it!


January 21, 2013

Starbucks Guatemala Casi Cielo 2013 K-Cup




This is a seasonal coffee from Starbucks and it's available in K-Cup format for the first time ever.  Guatemala Casi Cielo comes out every January for a couple of weeks only so if you want to try one of the best K-Cups I have ever had you better run to your nearest Starbucks before they're gone for the year!  This K-Cup is so good and I wish it was available year round.  It's a fabulous dark roast with a touch of citrus flavor and an amazing chocolate finish - it's heaven in a cup!  Hurry up and buy some before it's too late  - you won't regret it!



January 21, 2013
Café Escapes Café Vanilla Specialty K-Cup



This is yummy!  Nice and creamy with a great vanilla flavor.  It's great to drink as an after-dinner treat.  I recommend brewing it at 6 oz. or less so that it's not watery (8 oz. made too watery of a drink and the flavor was weaker).  This does have instant coffee as an ingredient so I wouldn't drink this right before bed!  Would I buy this again?  Yes.


January 18, 2013

Gevalia Dark Royal Roast K-Cup  



WOW! Never thought I would see Gevalia K-Cups!  Gevalia, owned by Kraft Foods, is the main coffee brand of the Tassimo single serve brewer, which is a direct rival to Keurig.  With the recent patent expiration of the Keurig K-Cup, there has been an explosion in the amount and variety of knock off K-Cups!  This is a dark roast, but not just any dark roast, it's a "Royal" one.  I thought I would like this more than I did considering I love anything to do with the Royal family.  Queen Elizabeth II, if you're reading this, you are FABULOUS - Love ya!  Anyway back to the review - it's an OK dark roast, nothing special really and I probably wouldn't buy it again.  It wasn't a bold enough flavor and I bet Her Royal Highness would agree with me.  Cheerio for now!


November 30, 2012
Beaumont Coffee K-Cups from Aldi









WOW!  It seems like everywhere you look nowadays you can find K-Cups.  Pretty soon, I bet, even Speedway and 7-11 will sell their own line of K-Cups!  Today we have a selection of Beaumont Coffee K-Cups that are available from one of my favorite stores - Aldi.  Yes, even Aldi has their own K-Cups and they just became available last week.  They currently sell 7 varieties: Hazelnut, Coastal Blend, Donut Store Blend, Dark Roast, Breakfast Blend and Colombian.  The price is $5.79 for a box of 12 K-Cups which is $.48 per K-Cup - not a bad price!  I love a dark roast coffee so of course, I bought a box of the Dark Roast along with a box of Hazelnut.  The Dark Roast made a very nice cup of coffee and I brewed a 6 oz. cup with it.  Now it doesn't say on the box what exact bean type they use or what exactly their "dark roast" coffee is but it tasted good to me.  The flavor profile was a cross between a really strong Colombian and a weak French Roast.  It wasn't quite as flavorful as a Starbucks French Roast K-Cup (one of my favorites) but I did like it nonetheless and, considering how relatively inexpensive these K-Cups are, I would definitely buy it again.

The Beaumont Coffee Hazelnut K-Cup was very good and, dare I say it, pretty much on par with my favorite hazelnut K-Cup, which is Gloria Jean's Hazelnut.  The aroma, when it was brewing, was identical to the GJ Hazelnut and so was the flavor profile.  That's what surprised me the most!  I may have to do a side-by-side comparison sometime but I swear this K-Cup was just as yummy as Gloria Jean's and less expensive too.  Bravo Aldi on a job well-done!




November 12, 2012
Starbucks House Blend Vue Pack



Yes!  Another Starbucks Vue Pack that I found at my local Target.  Funny that these are not mentioned on the Keurig facebook page nor are they available on Keurig.com.  I wonder why Keurig isn't promoting new Vue Packs as much as they do with K-Cups?  If I hadn't taken a glance at the coffee section in Target I never would have known these were available.  So far, Target has two different Starbucks Vue Packs for sale, the House Blend and French Roast (see my review below for the French Roast).  The House Blend was brewed at the 8oz. size using the "Strong" button and the resulting cup was very good and full-bodied.  To me, this tastes more like a dark roast rather than the medium roast that Starbucks considers this to be.  This is another winner from Starbucks and I hope they release more Vue Pack varieties soon.  If anyone wants to see how the House Blend Vue Pack compares to the Starbucks Verismo House Blend check out the new "Starbucks Verismo" section on my site.




November 12, 2012
Folger's Vanilla Biscotti Vue Pack



Wow! Here's another Vue Pack that I just happened upon at my local Target.  I don't normally like flavored coffee, but there aren't that many new varieties available for the Vue so I figured I would buy this and do a review for all of my adoring fans.  This one smells really good when brewing and has a very nice vanilla scent.  The coffee is a light roast and you can't really taste a strong coffee flavor with this one but it does, at least,  taste like a vanilla biscotti.   It's a smooth coffee with no bitterness.  I drink this with a little bit 'o cream to give it a more substantial mouthfeel.  If you want to try this Vue Pack head over to your local Target....that's the only place it's available, for now.





November 3, 2012
Sorry for the delay in getting more reviews up but we were hit pretty hard by Hurricane Sandy up here in Cleveland, Ohio.  I didn't have any internet access for over 3 days.  Who knew that a hurricane striking New Jersey could also afflict so much damage hundreds of miles away in Ohio! 

I will have some reviews posted soon, including some brand new Vue-Packs such as Folger's Vanilla Biscotti and Starbucks House Blend so please check back soon!  Also I have a new section devoted to one of my new kitchen toys, a Starbucks Verismo single-serve espresso machine.

My site is always a work in progress and I am hoping to have a comments section on each one of my postings soon.  I would love to hear your comments! 

If anyone has any comments, questions or requests please contact me via email at:

webmaster@planetwasabi.com









October 21, 2012
Starbucks French Roast Vue Pack



I found these at my local Bed Bath & Beyond store yesterday and I was pleasantly surprised to find them for sale.  I wasn't expecting these to be available until November.  There are two varieties: French Roast and House Blend.  I love dark roast coffees so I bought the French Roast.  They aren't, what I would call, inexpensive as they cost $15.99 for a box of 16 Vue Packs but I had the ubiquitous 20% BB&B coupon so that made them a little more affordable.  I brewed this at 8oz. on the Strong setting and the resulting cup of coffee was the strongest tasting I have had so far with my Vue.  It's strong enough to put hair on your chest (I felt so manly drinking it!).  I have had the Starbucks French Roast K-Cup version many times and the Vue Pack version is so much better.  The depth of flavor and aroma are more apparent with the Vue Pack version and I think this one may be my favorite dark roast Vue Pack so far.  A truly fabulous cup of coffee - let's hope that Starbucks will release more Vue Pack varieties soon!











October 14, 2012
An Eight O' Clock Colombian K-Cup Review Redux!





UPDATE:  I thought I would try brewing this one again (I do have another 17 K-cups left in the box - don't wanna waste them!) and I have to say that I enjoyed it so much more than I did the first time.  I don't know what the difference is but now the flavor is much more robust (and even a bit chocolaty) and it's really good.  Maybe the first one I tried had become stale somehow or maybe my taste buds were FUBAR at the time?  I don't know but the flavor reminded me of stale cafeteria coffee that instead of being brewed through a paper filter was brewed through an old, used jockstrap! I am drinking this one right now (I brewed it at 6oz.) and it's pretty darn fabulous.  So I amend my previous review of the Eight O'Clock Colombian and I now say this is one to buy if you like a medium-roast coffee that delivers a smooth flavor without too much acidity and without any bitterness.




October 10, 2012
Starbucks Sumatra K-Cup



Yet again here's another Starbucks dark roast K-Cup that tastes amazing.  The Starbucks Sumatra has a really bold flavor with hints of spice along with a nice caramel-chocolate finish.  This K-cup is one I have been enjoying every morning and I think it may be my new favorite.  It's really that good! A must try for all you dark roast lovers.





October 8, 2012
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October 8, 2012
Starbucks Caffè Verona K-Cup



I finally got a chance to try this K-Cup as Starbucks was having a buy one, get one free K-Cup sale at their stores last weekend.  Now I love a dark roast coffee and this is one of the best I have tried. It ranks right up there with Van Houtte Eclipse Blend and Green Mountain Dark Magic.  It's got a great, smooth flavor so it's not as overpowering as a French Roast can be. It also has a wonderful smokiness along with a nice, chocolate finish - very smooth!  Love It!




October 8, 2012
Keurig Rivo Espresso Machine - A Starbucks Verismo Killer?

A new single-serve espresso machine is coming soon from Keurig.  The Keurig Rivo is it's name and it has the ability to froth real milk using a removable milk frother that attaches to the machine.  That's going to make for a tastier and more authentic latte than the Starbucks Verismo can produce as that machine uses dried milk capsules (Yuck!).  So far there are 4 different espresso varieties, in that familiar capsule format, that are being produced by Lavazza.  The espresso capsules available at launch are the Intenso, Delicato, Decaf and Classico.  Not much more information is available but I did manage to snag a couple of screenshots of the machine and the capsules before they were removed from the Lavazza website.  Is the launch imminent?  We'll find out soon.








October 7, 2012
Starbucks Pike Place Roast K-Cup



This makes one fine cup of coffee!  It's a nice, bold medium roast that I find just as yummy as my favorite dark roasts (Italian and French).  It also has a subtle chocolate finish.  Great in the morning or after dinner.  So far I have enjoyed all of the Starbucks K-Cups, well except for that truly awful Veranda Blend.  This one is a must buy though.





October 7, 2012
How To Fix A Leaking Keurig Vue Brewer

Have you ever had a problem with your Keurig Vue brewer leaking clear water into your coffee while it's brewing?  I have had this happen quite often but I found out a way to fix it.  All you need is a small needle.  Watch my video to see how easy it is to fix.





October 6, 2012
Eight O'Clock Coffee 100% Colombian K-Cup



I saw this at my local Walmart last night and, well you know me, I just had to buy it!  They also have Eight O'Clock Original, Hazelnut and Dark Italian Roast K-Cups and they are exclusive to Walmart.  The price was reasonable too at $9.98 for an 18-count box which is a least $2 to $3 less expensive than most 18-count K-Cup offerings at Walmart.  I brewed this at 8oz. and I was disappointed.  These, to me, had a very odd taste, almost like a grassy/straw taste.  Maybe Colombian coffee just isn't bold enough for me.  I wouldn't buy this one again, but I would be willing to try their Original or Dark Italian Roast.




October 5, 2012
Celestial Seasonings Southern Sweet Tea Vue-Pack



Now this is one delicious iced tea that will have y'all coming back for more.  I have had the K-Cup version numerous times and I thought that one was good but this Vue-Pack is, no surprise, better!  What makes it even better is that the flavor of the black tea is much more apparent than in the K-Cup version.  The sweetness mixed with the natural black tea flavor is perfect and is so refreshing - I felt like Scarlett O'Hara sipping this southern sweet tea on a hot summer day.  A must buy!




October 2, 2012
Green Mountain Breakfast Blend Travel Mug Vue-Pack



I don't know what's wrong with this coffee but it's a hot mess.  It has a very weird flavor and was completely unexpected as I have tried Tully's Breakfast Blend and thoroughly enjoyed it but this Breakfast Blend is just plain nasty.  Brewing it at the larger travel mug size of 16oz. or trying a smaller 8oz. brew size didn't change the flavor profile.  This coffee reminded me of Starbucks Veranda Blend which, if you saw my review of that coffee, is not a good thing.  This is another coffee that would only appeal to someone with no taste buds.  Definitely pass on this one if you see it at the store...YUCK!



October 2, 2012
Barista Prima Coffeehouse Italian Roast Vue Pack



Another one of my favorites!  I love this one as a K-Cup and I love it even more as a Vue-Pack.  It has a great, bold flavor and aroma.  Brewed this at 8oz. on the Strong setting and it was delicious.  A must try if you like bold, dark roasts.





September 30, 2012
Starbucks Anniversary Blend K-Cup




WOW!  This was a surprise to me, a limited-edition Starbucks K-Cup release!  Here's to hoping that this is the first of many limited-edition Starbucks releases.  This K-Cup is amazing and I would not hesitate in buying another box even though it's pricey at $12.95 for a box of only 12 K-Cups.  This coffee is a bold and spicy blend featuring aged Sumatran beans with a smooth finish.  Yes it's bold but not overpowering like a French roast.  If you like a coffee with great flavor that can easily be your morning pick-me-up or an after dinner treat then you must go out and buy some now before they are all gone!




September 28, 2012
Green Mountain Coffee Pumpkin Spice Vue-Pack



Finally it's arrived!  I couldn't believe my luck when I found this today as I thought these weren't going to be released until the end of September.  I could not wait to try this Vue-Pack and I was not disappointed at all.  I love this one more than the K-Cup version (and that one is one of my all-time faves).  I brewed this Vue-Pack at 8-oz. on the Strong setting and that familiar pumpkin spice aroma filled my kitchen.  The taste is amazing with just the right combination of pumpkin and spices with neither one overpowering the other.  I can detect clove, allspice and even a hint of cinnamon along with the pumpkin flavor.  Truly a fabulous coffee!


September 26, 2012
Barista Prima Coffeehouse House Blend Vue-Pack



This is a medium-dark roast coffee by Barista Prima Coffeehouse and it comes in a larger-than-usual Vue-Pack.  This coffee is just OK and I don't find the flavor bold enough for my taste.  Even though the Vue-Pack contains more coffee grounds than a normal Vue-Pack, it seems a bit weak in flavor.  I much prefer their Italian Roast and French Roast offerings.  

September 24, 2012
Starbucks Veranda Blend K-Cup



This K-Cup was AWFUL!  Honestly I don't know who would like this coffee as it tasted like stale cereal.  This is a coffee for people that prefer tea as it has no coffee flavor whatsoever.  It's a light roast, or as Starbucks calls it a Blonde roast, but I have had some light roast coffees (Breakfast Blend by Tully's) that are so much more flavorful and enjoyable than this K-Cup.  Stay away from this one people...it's a hot mess.


September 18, 2012
Gloria Jean's Hazelnut Coffee Vue-Pack



This coffee has great hazelnut flavor and the aroma reminds me of walking through my local shopping mall that has a Gloria Jean's coffee kiosk.  That hazelnut aroma is unmistakable!  I brew this one at 8-oz. on the Strong setting and the hazelnut flavor is so much more pronounced than the K-Cup version.  It's perfect, for my taste, and this is one of my favorite flavored Keurig coffees.  My other all-time favorite flavored coffee is Green Mountain Pumpkin Spice, which I am excited to tell you is coming out for the Vue in late September!  I cannot wait for that one.




September 17, 2012
Emeril's Big Easy Bold K-Cup



This is a very bold but smooth and smoky blend that makes a great iced coffee too.  This is definitely a coffee for those of us that love really dark, bold roasts such as a French or Italian roast.  When I first got my Keurig last year, I had to drink this with a bit of cream to cut through the intense, bold flavor but now I drink it black and it's really yummy.  If you want your coffee with some BAM! then you gotta get some Emeril's Big Easy Bold.  It's fierce!


September 12, 2012
Green Mountain Coffee Wild Mountain Blueberry K-Cup



OK I know what you're thinking...blueberry flavored coffee - YUCK!  Well I thought the same thing until I tried this K-Cup.  The balance of blueberry and coffee is perfect and I love the way my entire kitchen smells as it's brewing and, yes, it does taste like a blueberry muffin.  If you love blueberries you should try this K-Cup.  It's different and it's a good change of pace from the normal K-Cup offerings. 




September 5, 2012
Coffee Shop The Original Donut Shop Coffee Vue-Pack



Here's a coffee I have had numerous times as a K-Cup so I was excited to try the Vue-Pack version.  Well it's much better in the Vue!  I brew this at my usual setting which is 8-oz. with the Strong setting enabled.  Wow I can really taste hints of bittersweet chocolate in the finish which is something I couldn't detect in the K-Cup version.  Also the fact that I can brew this hotter with the Vue makes a difference.  I have my Vue set to brew at 197F which is 5 degrees hotter than the B70 K-Cup machine can brew at. This is a medium-roast coffee
with no bitterness.


September 5, 2012

Cafe Escapes Cafe Caramel Vue-Pack

I wasn't sure what to expect from this Vue Pack but I was shocked at the yummy flavor . . . it's just like a liquid version of a Werther's Original caramel candy!  I brewed this at the recommended setting which is using the Hot Cocoa button and choosing the 8-oz. size.

  The aroma was amazing and filled my kitchen with caramel scents.  Taking my first sip, the butteryness (is that a word??) was sublime and although I could not taste any real coffee flavor, the carameliciousness made up for it.   The bad news - it has 70 calories, 2.5 grams of fat, and uses instant coffee granules, but if you don't feel like sucking on a Werther's and possibly breaking a tooth in the process, get the Cafe Escapes Cafe Caramel instead! 



September 4, 2012
Van Houtte Eclipse Blend K-Cup

Oh how I love this K-Cup - it's by far my favorite.  Being a dark roast coffee, this K-Cup delivers such a wonderful taste with just the right amount of acidity.  I brew this at my normal setting which is 8-oz. and, as always, I drink it black.  Oh so yummy and it is every bit as good as the slightly more expensive Starbucks dark roast K-Cups.  I always get a nice amount of bloom around the edge of my cup too, when I brew this K-Cup, which is a sign of freshness.  Buy the Eclipse Blend by Van Houtte if you want a truly tasty and satisfying dark roast coffee.  I hope they release this in a Vue-Pack version soon!

September 4, 2012
Green Mountain Coffee Dark Magic Vue-Pack

Another one of my favorite dark roast Vue-Packs.  As is the case with all of the Vue-Packs I have tried so far, this one is better than the Dark Magic K-Cup version.  The aroma is magnificent when it starts to pour and I can easily detect hints of bittersweet chocolate in the finish.  This is fantastic for anyone who likes a solid dark roast, non-acidic coffee.

September 4, 2012
Van Houtte French Vanilla Vue-Pack

This one was a bit weak in coffee flavor (it is a light roast coffee after all) but when I brewed this on the Strong setting at 8-oz., the vanilla aroma filled up my kitchen and I was excited to taste it.  The french vanilla flavor reminded me of one of my favorite ice creams, Pierre's French Vanilla.  I am not a huge fan of flavored coffees but I do find myself enjoying a cup of this on a lazy weekend morning.

September 3, 2012
Celestial Seasonings Sleepytime Tea Vue-Pack


I love this tea using the old-fashioned method of boiling water then steeping the tea bag for 4 minutes or longer but those days are over. Why??  Well this Vue-Pack tastes every bit as good as the old-fashioned method yet it brews in only 30 seconds!  I love this tea on a cold, fall night and it has such a nice spearmint flavor...tastes even better with a teaspoon of honey.

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