Grower's Cup Review: Decent Coffee, AnywhereS

Grower's Cup is the world's first disposable French Press. But can it make decent coffee?

What Is It?

A waterproof polyethylene-coated paper bag with 25 grams of ground coffee inside, which allows you to make a cup of joe anywhere there's hot water.

Who's It For?

Outdoorsy types who refuse to carry coffee-making equipment but are desperate for caffeine.

Design

Charmingly rustic, with its brown-paper-bag finish. The packs are also incredibly thin and light, so it would be easy to slip three or four in a rucksack for a weekend's hiking.

Using It

As easy as falling off a log. Rip open the top, pour in half a liter of hot water, then close the zip lock. Wait for a little while—five to eight minutes, depending on how strong you like it—and then open the little pouring spout on the side to deposit coffee in your cup.

The Best Part

The coffee it makes might not be quite up to the exacting standards that some demand, but considering it's brewed in a goddamn bag, it's really pretty good: rich, rounded and with surprising clarity.

Tragic Flaw

The pourer doesn't work so well. Make sure you open the spout as wide as possible, otherwise you will get coffee everywhere but in your cup.

Test Notes

  • The bag looks like it will be a nightmare to stand up once filled with water, but in fact it's particularly stable.
  • In fact, its shape once full means that little of the bag touches the floor, so heat loss isn't as much of a worry as it could be.
  • Grower's Cup claims that the filter and coffee are positioned so the brew doesn't touch the grounds while percolating, to prevent bitterness. From our tests, that seems about right: the coffee was surprisingly smooth for a French Press-style brew.
  • On that note, while it does feel more like a French Press than any other coffee making device, it's a bit of a marketing misnomer: there's no pushing of knobs here.
  • We tried Honduras bags, and the coffee was exactly as you'd expect from that part of the world: full-bodied but with a slight sweetness. You can get bags stuffed full of coffee from Bolivia, Ethiopia, Mexico and Nicaragua too, though.
  • Be warned that you might get a little sediment towards the end of the brew—but otherwise, the coffee's surprisingly clean and clear.

Should You Buy It?

If you need coffee in the great outdoors but can't be bothered carrying any kit, then absolutely yes—you'll be hard-pushed to find a Starbucks half way up a mountain, after all.


Grower's Cup
• Coffee types: Bolivia, Ethiopia, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua
• Price: $4
Gizrank: 4