Sunday, April 27, 2014

Battle of the Brewed (Coffee)

There has been mainstream coffee shops under attack lately like Starbucks, The Coffee Bean, and Seattle's Best. The influx of "third wave" coffee shops make people more snobbish about coffee and look down on these "mainstream" giant coffee shops, but they increase coffee awareness and appreciation in return. We welcome Craft Coffee, Commune, Kuppa, Magnum Opus, Yardstick, and other places I haven't tried yet (no, Epic Cafe, it's not your time yet) with open arms and open wallets.

Well, this is not a review of those places. Yes, these coffee shops serve good coffee by means of good beans and careful handling. This is about the cheapest and most available brewed coffee your money can buy. Brewing your own batch is of course the best and cheapest approach but sometimes you just want to spend money on things like... hmmm, aside from Goody hair elastics, more like... coffee. 

Location: Fisher Mall

Items to be briefly discussed here:
Dunkin' Donuts Brewed Coffee
McDonald's Premium Roast (aka their Brewed Coffee)

Price:
DD - 8oz costs Php35; 12oz Php45
McDo - 8oz costs Php25; 12oz Php35

Obviously, McDonald's is cheaper by volume. 

Beans:
Both use pre-ground coffee beans. McDo says they use 100% pure arabica beans.

(Note: McDonald's use freshly ground beans for their espresso-based drinks but that is a different topic.)

Packaging:
DD Brewed Coffee has thicker drinking plastic part and thicker cup holder, albeit a smaller area covered. DD also has their own creamer (5 grams) and sugar packets while McDonald's has Coffee-Mate (3 grams) for their creamer. (Note: Drinking brewed coffee in its purest form, meaning no sugar nor milk or creamer, is still the best approach.)

Oh, hi, Gus! You're the background shot!
So, what's the main difference? Aside from the price which is the ultimate factor for coffee cheapos like me, McDonald's brewed coffee is thinner and more diluted compared to Dunkin' Donuts' coffee. DD has more body and a stronger taste. What I'm not sure of is the consistency - if DD has this better coffee throughout their branches or is it hit-or-miss like McDonald's, because some branches serve okay-coffee while some branches serve colored hot water. (-.-)

Oh by the way, when you can, brew your own coffee. Invest on beans and a coffee press or drip coffee filter. But on this day, let it be known: Dunkin' Donuts wins the brewed coffee battle. And you should never buy Jollibee brewed coffee. It's just plain sad. And awful. And did I mention awful? Oh yeeeeaaaaah... Their iced coffee? It is instant coffee with ice. 

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