Review: Unboxing Bean Box

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Bean Box is a subscription service that specializes in doling out monthly doses of freshly-roasted coffee, straight from Seattle’s finest small batch roasters. This month, I gave the box a try. Here’s how it went…

A few years ago I got the chance to spend a summer in the Pacific Northwest for an internship. It was one of those crazy, ridiculous, life-changing summers. It was also the summer I met my first true love: coffee.

Of course I had had my fair share of dalliances with the drink long before that fateful summer, but I was a casual caffeine fan at best. It wasn’t until I made the pilgrimage to America’s undisputed coffee capital and found myself taking morning strolls down coffee shop lined streets that I realized I had found something special; something sacred.

There I was: a girl with dip-dyed pink hair (score!) and a paid internship (double score!), blindly stumbling into coffee shops between Portland and Seattle and picking whatever brew tickled my fancy off the menu (hello, cardamom and almond milk iced latte!)

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Forget the stuff back home… that summer, I discovered coffee. Real coffee. The kind served out of a roadside shanty by girls in bikinis or guys with ironic mustaches and steampunk suspenders over their lumberjack plaid flannel.

There are many things I miss about living in the Pacific Northwest (the food! the people! the views! Fred Meyer!), but the prevalence of glorious, magical, crack-in-a-cup coffee no doubt tops the list.

So, when Bean Box offered to hook me up with a box of freshly roasted beans straight out of Seattle, I was pretty excited.

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Obligatory Wall-o-Text Disclaimer: The product featured in this post was provided to us by Bean Box for review purposes. Rest assured that my love cannot be bought, and all opinions (and gleeful declarations of adoration) are genuine and my own. This post also contains affiliate links (double whammy, right?), which you can read more about here!

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Bean Box offers a few different subscription plans that can be tailored to suit your coffee addiction consumption (you can find all the details and pricing here). 

For this review I’m trying out the sampler, which consists of four 1.8 oz pouches (a total of 7.2 oz).

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Here’s a run-down of the four roasts I received in my sampler:

Brazil Canaan Estate from Middle Fork Roasters (Medium Roast)
Description: 
“A rare specialty lot from Brazil with a smooth, nutty profile and a sweet hint of cookie dough. There are many great coffees out there, but this one takes the… chocolate chip cookie!”
Approximate value of 1.8 oz pouch: $2.40 (Based on full size bag priced at $16 / 12 oz)

Bearded Lady from Longshoreman’s Daughter Coffee (Dark Roast)
Description: 
“With its rich, smoky flavor and bright cherry punch, this dark roast is delicate, yet bold. Complex, and surprisingly sweet. A study in delicious duality.”
Approximate value of 1.8 oz pouch: $2.48 (Based on full size bag priced at $16.50 / 12 oz)

Mexico Sierra Sur de Oaxaca from Caffe Vita (Medium Roast)
Description: 
“Buttery-smooth mouthfeel, spicy body, and a pleasent almond-cookie finish: the perfect base for Mexico’s traditional Café de Olla (just add a cinnamon stick!)”
Approximate value of 1.8 oz pouch: $2.48 (Based on full size bag priced at $16.50 / 12 oz)

100% Kona from Keala’s Hawaiian Coffee (Medium Roast) | Description: “This smooth roast has all the flavor and body that Kona coffee is known for, with just a hint of sweetness and sunshine. Aloha to your day, and Mahalo to all the farmers who made it possible!”
Approximate value of 1.8 oz pouch: $3.45 (Based on full size bag priced at $23 / 12 oz)

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Also in the Box: a recipe card and a caramel candy (yum!)

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One of Bean Box’s biggest selling features is the freshness of their roasts. According to their website, the coffees included in the sampler are shipped fresh, “within 48 hours of roasting.”

Another thing that I really liked was the diversity of the roasts included in my sampler. When it comes to coffee, I’m the sort of person who finds what she likes and sticks with it.

Bean Box forced me out of that comfort zone and introduced me to roasts that I wouldn’t necessarily think to try… and that reminds me of how I fell in love with coffee in the first place!

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One comfort zone I wasn’t going to budge from? My firm belief that coffee is best when served over ice. I find that coffee loses a lot of its flavor and intricacy when you drink it hot. When served cold, you can get a better sense of the flavor’s dimension and notes.

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Caffe Vita’s Mexico Sierra Sur de Oaxaca stood out the most. It brewed like a light roast but retained a unique spicy-sweetness that was well-complimented by cream. I like my coffee sweet, smooth and creamy, and this roast was all of the above.

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Brazil Canaan Estate and 100% Kona were both solid contenders that lived up to their impressive descriptions.

My least favorite roast was the Bearded Lady. I’m not usually a fan of dark roasts, and this one was exactly that: dark.

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Overall, Bean Box is a super fun way to try new (and super fresh) roasts. The little pouches are small enough that you won’t get “stuck” drinking several cups of a coffee you’re not crazy about (Bearded Lady), but enough that you can get 2-3 batches of your new favorite brew. That said, the sampler is definitely for experimenting. You won’t get enough coffee to replace your monthly stash… more like supplement it.

You could also use the “fun size” pounces for stocking a drink tray in your guest room (if you’re fancy like that!) or as gifts for fellow coffee fanatics.

My only real qualm with Bean Box is the price. Based on the pricing of full-sized bags of coffee available on Bean Box’s website, the approximate value of the box is $10.81 — which is about half of the monthly subscription fee. In my opinion, that makes the box a bit overpriced. That said, the “cool factor” of trying new and exotic roasts does somewhat help to ease the blow of that hefty price tag.

Want to give Bean Box a try? You can check it out here!

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How do you like your coffee? Hot or iced? What are your favorite add-ins? What’s your go-to roast, and how do you brew your morning dose? I want to hear your favorites… let me know down in the comments below!

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About Accidental Suburbanites

Just a couple of kids turning a house into a home, one Pinterest fail at a time.
This entry was posted in Home Life, Love List, Review, Shopping. Bookmark the permalink.

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