Posted Thu Aug 16, 2012, 5:16am Subject: Does Target's buying power translate into decent store brand coffee?
Target is, in my view at least, a significant cut above the contemporary big box discounter. Perhaps it's the retail provenance from the Dayton Hudson stores...the imaginative advertisements, the clean fresh atmosphere, the sharp eyed merchandise buying staff. Of course, there's the ubiquitous grocery cart fleet and other contemporary touches that have made retail shopping akin to a visit to military commissaries....but of course, in this category, WalMart is supremely banal.
At any rate, Target's Archer Farms brand connotes the chain's higher quality in-store food products. Coffee beans are among the Archer Farms offerings. I've tried a few unflavored varieties and have generally found them to be quite acceptable and a good value compared to the national brands on the shelf...Starbucks, Caribou, etc.
cerridwyn Senior Member Joined: 6 Jun 2010 Posts: 524 Location: Inland Empire California Expertise: I live coffee
Posted Thu Aug 16, 2012, 5:25am Subject: Re: Does Target's buying power translate into decent store brand coffee?
You are generally correct. I know coffee review even reviewed a few of them once when they did a store bought bean section and they were one of the best.
I have never tried their pre-ground, but have tried a couple of their whole bean coffees. They even buy cup of excellence lots which says to me their coffee buyer is brighter than the average store bean buyer.
This is the problem I've had. I bought a bag of their CoE beans recently, and thought obviously roasted to about a City+, they were coated in oil. They'd have to be pretty well past prime for that to happen. No bloom either.
CMIN Senior Member Joined: 14 Jun 2012 Posts: 1,611 Location: South FL Expertise: I like coffee
Espresso: CC1 Grinder: Baratza
Posted Thu Aug 16, 2012, 2:54pm Subject: Re: Does Target's buying power translate into decent store brand coffee?
I don't know about their coffee but their food items are excellent. Like I make garlic bread/loaf from scratch, but Archer Farms has one (that's massive) and so good and all you do is throw it in the oven, grab a loaf whenever I'm near Target.
Posted Thu Aug 16, 2012, 3:05pm Subject: Re: Does Target's buying power translate into decent store brand coffee?
Our local Costco has a roaster and you can pretty much tell that a lot of their beans are fresh roasted. Now, whether they are roasted well enough for us coffee geeks is quite another story, but I've used some of their beans before and they weren't bad (but not as good as my home roasts).
EvanOz85 Senior Member Joined: 9 Jul 2011 Posts: 268 Location: Lafayette, LA Expertise: I live coffee
Espresso: La Spaziale Mini Vivaldi II Grinder: Baratza Vario and Preciso Vac Pot: Bodum Santos, Yama 5-cup Drip: Chemex, Kone 3, Kalita Wave,... Roaster: Hottop B, Behmor 1600
Posted Thu Aug 16, 2012, 5:59pm Subject: Re: Does Target's buying power translate into decent store brand coffee?
I bought a bag of their Kona Blend a while back. The coffee was fairly fresh and the bag was labeled "LIGHT ROAST". Imagine my anger when I opened it up to find huge, oil drenched, Vienna roasted beans.
Pretty nice overview. I see you cited my ROASTe blog post, which is fun. As I said in a comment under the post, I assume that much of Target's CoE coffee goes unsold/unnoticed. If, on the contrary, people are buying it and enjoying it, then I agree with you that what Target is doing in cases like these could be seen as good in terms of coffee evangelism. I still hate to watch the good stuff going stale though.
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