“Instant Coffee” like Brim and Sanka were horrible. Do they even sell that kind of stuff anymore? If so, I don’t know anyone who drinks it.
Instant coffee is still a big thing in the UK. In 2014, 77% of coffee drinkers used it at home. The number’s probably dropped since then, but it’s probably still north of 50%.
Kettles are common, and heat up faster than in the US due to be 220V. So it makes more sense to have a kettle to make coffee and tea instead of separate appliances for each.
My wife drinks instant (well, freeze-dried). We have a kettle and she’s not a big coffee drinker. I don’t touch the stuff, so a coffeemaker is a waste.
You can still get Taster’s Choice (which is co-branded with Nescafe in the US, and I think just goes by Nescafe in the rest of the world); I imagine that there are a few others still out there, as well.
I’d guess that Keurig machines have largely taken over the “I want to make one cup of coffee at a time” segment.
Yep. It’s probably still used for camping trips though.
I remember the commercials and the tag line from when I was a kid but I didn’t know about caffeine at the time. I didn’t get the meaning of the catch phrase until it was explained in this thread though if I had seen the commercial now for the first time, I would have.
But is it still served in America’s finest restaurants?
I’ve spent a lot of time in Greece, and instant coffee is big there. If you order a “coffee” (as opposed to “Greek coffee,” which is essentially the same as Turkish coffee), you’re going to get instant Nescafe. If you want brewed coffee, you have to ask for “American coffee.”
I’m surprised to hear remarks like “do they still make instant coffee?” because I see it every time I’m at Kroger or Safeway. I do keep some on hand but rarely use it (I have a container of Taster’s Choice in my cupboard that is, I think, about four years old).
In my experience, if you aren’t looking for it in the coffee / tea aisle, it’s easy to miss it (or not even be aware that it’s there). I buy Taster’s Choice 100% Colombian, because I do only drink a cup or two a day (and don’t want to fiddle with the coffeemaker – I have an electric kettle that I use to heat up the water), and it’s not always easy to find. IME, there might be a half-dozen or so SKUs of instant coffee in an aisle that has dozens of varieties of whole bean and ground coffee, and an absolute ton of varieties for Keurigs.
I forgot all about Brim coffee.
There was also an early 1970s L.A. street gang called the Brims who were enemies/rivals of the Crips, IIRC. I don’t know what happened to those Brims either, unless they reconstututed themselves as the Bloods.
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That’s an easy one to go into common use, I suppose. Sanka = Sans Caffeine.
Regarding instant coffee more generally, Starbucks sells VIA, which are individual single-serve instant coffee packets and are surprisingly decent. My mom keeps them around since she doesn’t drink coffee but has friends/guests who do and they’re better than fresh-brewed from stale beans in a rarely-used drip pot.
I keep intending to buy some Sanka when I see it; I semi-frequently find myself craving an evening coffee but don’t want to mess with my sleep schedule.
I’d forgotten about VIA – my wife used to drink it regularly, up until a few years ago. At least in this area, it’s very difficult to find in grocery stores now; I suspect that the popularity of K-cups has hurt that business.
I keep some instant Nescafe around for Greek frappés. It’s not what I’d go to for an actual coffee, but it’s great for when I want a cold coffee-flavored drink–an entirely different thing from coffee, but good in its own right.
I am wondering if that can truly be correct, as home coffee makers are ancient.
Percolators have been around for ever, are pretty trouble free, long lasting, and make coffee fast.
I have one that is probably 60 years old, and it still works fine, only problem with it is it makes 24 cups of coffee.
Have a smaller one that is every bit of 40 years old.
And yet instant coffee came long after those and is still sold now.
Not nearly as much probably, but it must have some market niche it still fills.
I am not sure what the draw of it was back then, but it was not from lack of home coffee maker.
I am guessing the same draw that brought us instant Tang and such ?
I think that RealityChuck is talking about home coffee makers that actually make a decent cup of coffee.
I grew up with percolator coffee. Percolator coffee is generally awful unless you take a great deal of care with the process. The coffee is recirculated several times through the grounds, resulting in overextraction and bitterness.
Drip coffee makers make a lot better cup of coffee more easily. Although freeze-dried coffee was a big improvement over other kinds of instant coffee, drip coffee makers made coffee both percolators and instant coffee nearly obsolete.
Yep. But when I was a kid in the 60’s and 70’s it seemed everyone we knew had one. I’m surprised the home coffee market didn’t collapse because of it. Just hideous!
I may be just guessing but it seems to me that the coffee market had a renaissance when makers like Mr. Coffee came out. To this day almost every office/business I’ve been in has had one or similar.
The orange handle is a ubiquitous way to identify a pot of decaf coffee.
Percolator coffee is wonderful. You just have use a coarse enough grind, and preferably use an electric model that automatically ramps down to “keep hot” when it’s done brewing, rather than one of those old fashioned “cowboy” percolators that you put on the stove.
Most pre-ground coffee sold today has far too small a grind to use in a percolator, particularly the more expensive kind that comes in bags rather than cans or plastic tubs (like Maxwell House). We tried some Gevalia not long ago and it was so fine you probably could have made Turkish or Greek style coffee with it.
I’m not claiming to be an expert, just speaking from experience.
You think middle class housewives were buying specialized coffee at the SuperValu in the small town where I grew up in the early 60’s? Silly boy.
Don’t you remember the big red coffee grinder at every A&P that had settings for various coffee making methods, including percolators?
I remember taking a few beans and chewing on them while shopping.