I recently reviewed Bean Box for my video series Targeted where I review products targeted to me in ads on the internet. Bean Box fits the bill–I’ve seen plenty of their ads in my internet travels. But I was also lucky enough to be gifted with some products to try.
What is Bean Box?
Bean Box is a coffee delivery and subscription service headquartered in the heart of coffee country: Seattle, Washington. The team at Bean Box curates high quality coffee beans from across the world. They package their beans in curated sampler boxes as well as regular sized bags.
You can purchase tasting monthly tasting boxes that consist of small sample bags curated for you by coffee experts. Or you can choose to get a monthly, biweekly, or weekly 12 ounce coffee bag subscription. You’ll get full size bags at your chosen frequency based on your preferences. With subscriptions, shipping is complimentary.
Single, full-sized bags are also available without a subscription, but shipping is not included. Bean Box also offers a variety of gift options. The service also offers two cold brew options that come in 1.5 liter vacuum packed boxes.
Bean Box Review
So is Bean Box worth it? I spent a week using their products looking at form, function, and value. I normally purchase items that I review. But in this case, I was graciously gifted a four-pack sampler of whole coffee beans as well as both varieties of cold brew. Freebie, or not, my reviews are always an honest assessment of the product.
With this product, we’ll consider the packaging the form. The packaging is pleasing and functional. The labeling on each bag of beans is clear about where the coffee originates and includes tasting notes.
I really liked the visual guide on each bag that indicates the roast level from light to dark. I think this is handy for helping people start to learn more about their coffee preferences. Over time, I imagine I would hone in on my favored roast range. The bags are also easily resealable to lock in freshness.
The boxes of cold brew are also packaged well. The boxes are small enough to easy fit in the refrigerator. And the pop-out nozzle makes it easy to pour a brew quickly and cleanly. The fact that the coffee is vacuum packed means it will stay fresh longer.
Is it delicious? Yes! I tasted Bean Box’s cold brew against my own home brewed version, and, honestly, their coffee was so much better than mine. And, I like my cold brew. Or I did? The Bean Box cold brew had a much more nuanced flavor; it was richer in flavor and color. It tasted so…chocolatey! I usually take my coffee with cream and sweetener, but with the Bean Box cold brew, I could see myself drinking it black.
The whole beans we tried were also very tasty and clearly higher quality than our Costco-brand beans. I also payed if forward and gave a pack of Bean Box coffee to our coffee-fanatic friends who said it was “yummy”.
Besides taste, I really like the concept of a coffee subscription curated by experts. Coffee is a product that’s complex. From origin to roast, there’s a lot of variety in the market which can be overwhelming. Once you find a coffee you like, it’s easy to stick with it because it’s easier than navigating a complicated lexicon.
With this type of service, you can try lots of options and learn which types of coffees you like without a huge investment–2 ounces is easier to write off if you don’t love a particular bean than an entire pound. It helps that you know the coffee you’re getting is picked by people who know what they are doing; you might not love an option, but it’s probably not going to be bad.
Coffee Bean Subscription
So I love the coffee. It’s delicious. But, is it worth it? This is a hard question for me! I’m cheap about certain things; I know we can brew a decent cup of Joe for about $0.20 buying beans in bulk at Costco. Bean Box is FIVE times that price at about $1.00 per cup, brewed from beans. The price difference, percentage-wise, is a tough cup to swallow.
BUT, the quality is certainly superior. You’re paying for curation, expertise, AND shipping as well as a high quality product. When you think about it, coffee shouldn’t necessarily be cheap; the process of picking beans, drying them, roasting, and shipping them all over the world is complex and special. All things considered, $1.00 for a great cup of coffee is still an extremely affordable luxury. And it certainly beats the price of outsourcing your coffee from a mass market chain.
When it comes to a Bean Box coffee bean subscription, I think it’s worth it, especially if you enjoy excellent coffee and want to learn more about the different varieties available. Maybe it’s just a monthly splurge, or maybe a weekly subscription will help you kick your coffee shop habit. Either way, Bean Box offers plenty of options for any coffee enthusiast to participate in their program without breaking the bank.
The cold brew is another thing. First, let me re-iterate how much I like this coffee. It is exceptional. However, at about $3.50 for an eight ounce serving, it’s just slightly too pricey to be a regular addition to my refrigerator.
However, I will definitely treat myself to Bean Box cold brew for special occasions like a party or for guests. I also think a box of Bean Box cold brew will make an occasional appearance in my camping cooler–it’s so convenient and a great size for our RV adventures.
But, I do think for people who are frequently buying cold brew from a coffee chain, this is a fantastic value. It’s about the same price (delivered!) as a mass market coffee shop for a much tastier cup of coffee. Believe me, I’ve had my share of mediocre chain cold brew and Bean Box’s product is light years better. If you’re already spending this money daily, you might as well spend it on a high quality beverage that you don’t need to stand in line for.
Bean Box: The Bottom Line
I think that Bean Box is overall a good value and is a high quality product. I love the idea of a coffee subscription box because it literally allows you taste the world. And the format helps you learn more about your likes and dislikes of a pretty complex product. The cold brew is out of this world delicious and while it might be a little too expensive to be a daily treat for me, it’s a good value for people who purchase coffee out very often. And it’s certainly an affordable luxury and a great way to treat yourself on occasion. And don’t forget to consider Bean Box for gifting. Bean Box gift subscriptions are an incredible deal–a three month subscription is less than a bouquet of flowers and will last longer.