Happy National Coffee Day!  Hopefully, you took advantage of some of the many opportunities to grab a free cup of Joe.  But, tomorrow, coffee ain’t free no more.  You’ll have to pay for your beverages.  As such, may we suggest that you consider this innovative caffeine source from Kuju Coffee:

Planning bikepacking Vapor Trail kuju coffee

Responsible and Conscious

Kuju Coffee is one of a few companies using these innovative, single-use pourover pouches.  Each package contains enough real, ground up coffee beans to brew a single, 8oz cup of coffee anywhere you can scrounge up some hot water.  Why are these better than, say, Starbucks Via?  Well, again, real, ground up coffee.  The beans are organic.  Also, Kuju Coffee goes beyond Fair Trade with what they call “Conscious Sourcing.”  That means that they work with farms that are too small or remote for larger companies and who have been left behind by the Fair Trade movement.  And, Kuju participates in 1% for the Planet, donating a portion of their revenue to the National Park Foundation.

Kuju Coffee Review

So, it’s good for the planet, good for the farmers and workers, and good for your soul.  But, is it good coffee?  Well, I’ve found coffee to be a rather personal preference.  But, objectively, yeah – it’s a good brew.  So it has that going for it.

kuju coffee review

It’s also easy to carry, easy to figure out, and easy to pack out.  Once you tear open the pouch, you just have to spread the anchors over the lip of your cup and you’re ready to make coffee.  As long as your cup holds more than 8oz, you’re good.  I suggest boiling a bit more water than you’ll need.  Once your water is hot, you slowly pour water up to the brim of the filter and wait as it seeps down through the grounds, absorbing all of that coffee goodness.  Kuju says that it’s ok if your filter sits in the cup and soaks in the resulting coffee as you brew – it just makes the cup better.

Let’s get the bad stuff out of the way – single serving coffee isn’t the best thing for the environment.  These are better than those horrible Keurig cups, but there’s still more waste than you’d get with a coffee machine or via a pourover.

You also have to be a bit more focused when making coffee from these pouches, which I understand can be difficult prior to absorbing your caffeine.  The filter-pouch has a small opening and doesn’t hold much water.  So, you have to be careful when pouring your boiling water into the pouch or you can overpour and spill water into the cup.  No one wants diluted coffee.

Kuju makes a much better cup of coffee than any of those freeze-dried, microgound options.  What are some other alternatives?  Well, loose grounds is pretty much it.  You can buy a french press kit for most integrated stoves, which will brew some good coffee.  But, you have to rinse out your stove afterwards or dinner will taste funny and get you wired before bed.  There are also dedicated coffee devices.  You can carry an Aeropress or similar device.  I like the idea of a pourover, personally, because it’s one less device to carry.  It also keeps your pot clean.  It’s a tiny bit more trash to pack out, but not much more than the grounds you’d be packing out anyway.

You do pack out your grounds, right?  I mean…caffeinated bears?  No one wants that.

Grab your own Kuju directly from them, or shop at Amazon, REI, or Backcountry.com