Coffee has been a trademark of the United States since, prior to the Revolutionary war in the 1700’s. It’s addictive substance, roasty taste and velvety texture has spawned chic coffee shops for, maybe, twenty or thirty years. Ever since Starbucks inception, it’s hard not to find a D.C yuppie, hipster, bro or DMV-metro sexual without their cup of joe at the crack of rush hour.
I can’t even bare a day sans my usual morning brew. On the contrary, a semi-recent jolt in coffee prices due to an increasing demand (globalization, poor growing conditions, intense demand from commodities markets) for these yummy coffee beans has spiked prices for growers, retailers and to us consumers.
One would think that this increasing spike would decrease coffee demand but, alas, that’s not really the case.
Brands like Starbucks and Carribou coffee market their brand to upper middle to rich class consumers–kinda obvious since coffee sizes range from grande (spanish) and venti ( Italian) and because barristas concoct blends like mocha frappaccinnos with extra foam plus coconut sprinkles.
After Starbucks and its’ competitors like Carribou started popping across the nation, other chains wanted to get in on the action. McDonalds, 7-eleven, Dunking Donuts, and a slew of other companies have exploded this coffee war. Because of this explosion, a threshold was open to middle and working class demographics to get into haute-coffee thanks to these aforementioned fast food chains.
Given the nasty downfall of this recession on millions of people — poverty rate has increased to 46 million, not including people on welfare– consumers ranging from working to even upper class want cheaper coffee in the mornings.
Though coffee prices may have hit a permanent jolt, it doesn’t meant that demand isn’t transparent. It’s there but more consumers are frugal with their day-to-day purchases.
Now the big question to ask is where do you buy the cheapest cup of coffee in the United States? If you are a penny-pinching consumer and have been wary about what kind of morning coffee to invest in then this is the right article for you.
On the other hand, if this recession has given you a surplus of cash for you to expend on frivolous commodities and you never buy anything less than a venti at Starbucks, than this article may not be the right read for you.
If this is the case, please check out my past entries on ginger seals and The Golden Girls. I hope these entries gives you a good chuckle in the morning, after you take that long nice sip of that super foamy chai latte spiced with enough nutmeg for your pleasure.
Cheap Coffee Rank
1.) Panera– For $1.60 you can get a small cup of light roast, hazelnut, normal or dark roasted coffee. Though I stop by there sometimes–they make the best cinnamon crunch bagel–I don’t recommend buying coffee from here. It’s overpriced in comparison to its competition.
2.) Starbucks— You would think that spending $1.50-1.60 on a tall pike roast is a great deal but really, you are short changing yourself. If you like coffee that gives you a burnt aftertaste and sucks up to 50-60 cents from your daily budget, then by all means, just buy Starbucks brand coffee. Yet, if you want to save more than half a dollar and drink better tasting coffee, just drive away from Starbucks and go somewhere else.
3.) Caribou Coffee— I am a huge fan of Caribou coffee. Nonetheless, a small cup of coffee ranges between $1.40-1.70 in the D.C/Maryland and Virginia area. This brand definites haute-cafe drinks since most drinks superbly blend chocolate, caramel and white chocolate coffee liquors into something only angels would drink up in heaven. As much as I love this brand, I don’t recommend it for severe penny-pinchers. In contrast, if you are a semi- cheap-skate and can splurge a few extra cents than this brand is a great morning investment.
4.)7-Elevan— BLAH! Seven-Eleven has nasty coffee. Though the price range for small is $1.30-$1.60 and is deemed frugal-worthy, it’s more water than coffee. The only perk with going there is that you can add different syrups: hazelnut, amaretto, irish cream, vanilla, etc; and try different blends: vanilla, bold, decaf, columbian, etc. I rather waste $1.50 on Starbucks then scale back and spend $1.30 on this murky blend of yuck.
5.) Dunkin Donuts— Jackpot! For only 99 cents (yeah, tax may surge the price) you get a small cup of coffee to complement the hustle and bustle of your busy morning. One caveat with this though is that they serve their small coffee in tiny cups. Darn! I highly recommend this coffee since Dunkin Donuts uses high quality coffee beans, consistently brews different blends, and customizes your coffee: for free. Yet, if you can’t live with just drinking a few drops of Dunkin Donuts coffee in the morning then you may need to traverse over to another brand.
6.) Burger King—Eh! You get a decent amount of coffee for 99 cents but it’s not freshly brewed. It also sometimes tastes like metal. I mean, if you are a fan of Seattles Best coffee than visit Burger King. If not, scroll down a bit farther to read up on the best morning coffee investment you can get…
7.) McDonalds—BEST MORNING COFFEE DEAL! For only 99 cents, you get a decent cup of coffee that tastes finely roasted, smooth and strong enough to jolt you into having a productive day at work. McDonalds has definitely spearheaded the coffee wars and has been usurping its competition, including Starbucks, with having the best tasting coffee around. There have been coffee tastings decked across the country and more consumers have preferred McDonalds coffee for its taste, size and quantity. Www.Sherryndaniel.com chooses McDonalds coffee as being the best deal you can get.
Do you disagree with this post? Or, do you know of a better place to buy a good cup of joe? Please comment below and tell me why you feel that way 🙂