Good coffee on a budget

Discuss flavors, brew temperatures, blending, and cupping notes.

#1: Post by Leelo77 »

My current go to for cheaper coffee has been the lighter roasted stuff from happy mug and northbound Coffee roasters. Has anyone else had great experience with other budget friendly roasters?

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#2: Post by TomC »

You can buy Kimbo espresso today, on an Amazon Prime Day deal for $15 per kilo delivered. ... 07Q37YLQT/

Cartapani is a lighter roast than the one above and still lands at under 60 cents/ounce ... 07JQ232Z8/

Nicolletti Coffee in Brooklyn NY has many options for bargain seekers. I think they're a pretty solid choice.
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#3: Post by Milligan »

Cimarron Roaster's Courthouse Blend in the 1kilo quantity works out to around a 12oz bag being $13.60 shipped. They offer free shipping on 1kilo or more. They sell in 250g bags too so it is easy to try a few of their roasts in one order to see what you like without committing to a full sized bag. Courthouse and Chimney Rock are fantastic espresso (Courthouse being my favorite of the two.). They also do rotating single origins. I liked their current Peru coffee they are carrying.

I haven't had much luck off of Amazon. I've had some rather old bags from them (Lavazza in particular.) Curious about the Kimbo, but not looking or a robusta blend right now. Hard to beat $15 for a kilo if it is fresh and you like medium-dark robusta blends. Some say Italian roasted beans aren't as prone to aging issues but I've had some nasty older Italian beans before...

Not many good roasters can hit the lower prices anymore due to shipping expenses (first class has gone to $6 for me lately...). Maybe you can luck out on a local roaster and save on the shipping.

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#4: Post by JR_Germantown »

I've bought from Red Bird Coffee for years. They've had pretty good press here. I typically buy their "Mountain High Espresso" blend, but whenever the "honey process" Costa Rica (single origin) coffee is available, I get some of that, too.

If you buy 5 lbs. or more, they ship free, and it usually arrives 2-3 days after roasting. I break mine down into mason jars and freeze it. I'm sure there's been lots of debate on that, but I've found it works well for me. A jar from the freezer gives me shots just like when the coffeed first arrived.



#5: Post by jefegold »

I stopped in to the Nicoletti shop a few weeks ago. Really nice people there. They have a serious local following in their heavily Italian neighborhood. They sell their own roasts as well as Italian imports, including ESE pods. Their own espresso roast is a medium dark blend I believe it's 70-30 or maybe 80-20 Arabica-Robusta, so you get that heavily roasted flavor. I made some nice espressos with it, but it blew me away in an affogato. It was only $9 for a pound.
(D'Amico is another Italian style local roaster in Brooklyn, but I have not tried their beans.)

I have mainly been trying specialty coffee roasters from the east coast. I look in local markets and whole foods for beans I want to try, are on sale, and are within 2 or 3 weeks of roast. Any older or if there is no roast date, I avoid it. I've gotten Variety coffee, Counter Culture, Copper Horse, No. 6 Depot, Irving Farm, Grumpy, Partners and others for really cheap.

Another NY roaster for a great variety and price is Porto Rico Importing Co. You can even get 1/2lb bags if you want to try a few things. Their prices have risen, but they are still reasonable since it's by the pound not 12oz.

Finally, look for deals. If you can store beans, then get 5lb bags or combinations. I used to get 3 12oz bags of beans from Abbotsford Rd (also in Brooklyn) for $35. Those kinds of deals are not uncommon from many major roasters around the country.

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#6: Post by Sal »

Many commercial roasters constantly have "sales" anywhere from 10% off to as low as "$4 Try Me" on an 8 oz bag. I imagine the business side of managing roasted bean inventory must be a very daunting task. Being a long-time home roaster, I have not explored and purchased roasted beans from stores for a long time. But recently, I wanted to see how good (or bad) the new waves of micro-roasters opened around me, so I started "roaster hopping". Most of them cater more traditional blend of mid-to-dark to third-wave-oriented lighter single origins. The local price seems to be pretty much set by the market condition such that none are extremely expensive nor extremely cheap, averaging right around $16-$18/lb. Some were good, some were not so good. But it is extremely rare to find any roasted coffee that is good value compared to my own roasted coffee.

FYI, I keep a detailed record of spending on my coffee hobby. The average price of green beans I purchased last year was $7.20/lb (shipping and tax included) which comes to be $8.50/lb for roasted coffee after 15% weight loss. Even if I include all the cost of equipment (roasters, grinders, brewers, consumables, and other misc accessories) I have purchased in the past for my coffee hobby, the average cost of roasted coffee is still around $14.42/lb. For this price, I am enjoying always fresh, craft-roasted coffee exactly the way I like.

I just ordered roasted beans (and greens) from Prodigal by Scott Rao at $22/250g. It will be interesting to see if the roasted beans and unroasted greens are worth the price for me. I also ordered the George Howell's Limited Roasts at $24 and $29 /8oz bags. If I find those "expensive" coffees not worth the price, then I will stick to my home-roasted coffee.
I am a home-roaster, not a home-barista...


#7: Post by coffee_maybe »

Honestly - don't shy away from bigger brands like Kimbo, Lavazza or Tchibo. I know that it sounds like a sin for many people but if you manage to catch them on sale (which is every few weeks in Europe) and with a relatively ok-ish roast date (meaning maximum of 4-5 months past roasting) you can divide them in 250 grams bags and freeze them.
I've honestly been surprised at how decent some of these beans are for espresso. That said, they are often dark-ish roasts and are not good enough for filter coffee so it depends on what you look for in coffee.


#8: Post by Znekcihc »

i dont know how much coffee you go through. But I purchase bulk 5 or 10 pound bags and get wholesale price from local roasters. 40% off. about $80 for 5 pounds.