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Starbucks VIA® Ready Brew by Starbucks Coffee

An instant brew coffee from Starbucks.

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Very tasty, not terribly expensive

  • Dec 27, 2009
  • by
Pros: Taste, cost, convenience

Cons: none

The Bottom Line: We can get caffein just about anywhere, the picky coffee people turn to premium offerings and the Via Italian roast should please the picky.

With the apparent success of the Columbian version of Starbuck’s Via coffee, they have begun offering an Italian Roast option.

Italian roast is always extra bold. For any “extra” bold roast the difference between strong and just burned is very fine. I was hesitant to try the Via version because I have never had a good cup of Italian roast from Starbucks (that is either in the store or when I’ve tried to make my own). There is always a metallic aftertaste I associate with the “coffee” that comes in a can or a brick. The Via version does not have this problem.

The coffee is frothy and looks very much like a triple shot of espresso and has the same general smell. I made it exactly as described (one packet to 8oz water) and it was as strong as an extra bold cup should be, but it happily lacked the bitter iron taste I’ve experienced before. I actually was able to taste some citrus in it, which was completely unexpected. Further, the aftertaste that did linger never got gross (skunky is what I tend to call that peculiar l kind of aftertaste). Also, as with French press coffee, you can easily adjust the strength by how much water you use.

I usually drink two large cups of coffee when I make it. Given this, Via would not be cost effective as a regular replacement; however it will be fine for me in the occasional pinch. If you don’t consume quite so much, then Via is easily worth the cost. Regardless of cost though, it is a very good cup of coffee.


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October 09, 2010
I've been very curious to try this! I think I'm ready now.
October 08, 2010
Mmmmm, I've heard so many great things about Starbucks' VIA! Bonus points for those two flavors that they carry. I'll definitely have to get some for the days when I'm too lazy or busy to leave the house :P Thanks for sharing, Paul!
More Starbucks VIA® Ready Brew reviews
Quick Tip by . March 09, 2013
I was given some as a gift and wasn't expecting much but it turned out pretty good. Not as good as a brewed cup but certainly much better than expected especially when you're in a hurry.
review by . October 22, 2009
Starbucks Via Ready Brew
I was given a free packet of the Starbucks VIA "Italian Roast" recently and was really hesitant to try it. In fact, I just put it in my cupboard for "emergency" purposes.  See, I have a cup of coffee in the morning before work... so I was thinking that it'd come in handy on a day that I was running late.  Well, last week the opportunity arose to try it out.  I have an instant hot water dispenser at home so I just tore open the package of Starbucks Via and added …
Quick Tip by . December 31, 2010
I'm not a fan of Starbucks coffee. I like their Salted Caramel Hot Cocoas and Caramel Spiced Ciders but, their coffee has always been too much for me. Also, some inside info of how long they keep their brewed coffee burning turned me off it forever. So, my expectations for Via were LOWWWWWW. However, a friend of mine and I received some free samples when we bought our Salted Caramels. I just asked for a box since I'm the only coffee drinker in my house and like I said, LOW expectations. …
review by . November 25, 2009
Pros: Cost, convenience      Cons: Currently only comes from Columbian beans, so no other choices      The Bottom Line: This isn't your grandfather's instant coffee.  I'm a total coffee snob and it passes my tongue.  Honestly, i wouldn't be able to tell it from a brewed cup of Columbian.      Last time I bought a pound of coffee at Starbucks, the barista gave me the 3 pack Via Instant coffee instead of the free …
review by . October 04, 2009
I was extremely skeptical about Starbucks Via Instant Coffee, but after trying it for a few days, I'm not pleasantly surprised and definitely convinced of this as a good alternative to other methods of preparing coffee. The one warning I have to offer is that you have to drink it quickly as the flavor degrades significantly with time. The taste is very good in the first 3-5 minutes, after that, it tastes like old coffee.     Could I tell the difference during Starbucks' Via Challenge? …
review by . September 29, 2009
I've had the opportunity to try the Via - Italian Roast and Colombian several times over the period of 2 months, and I think it tastes better than some instant coffees and even some brewed coffees but it is eventually an instant coffee. It's nice for an on-the-go cup, a better experience than the burnt office coffee but there is no way it tastes like the freshly brewed Starbucks. I like the Colombian a little more than the Italian Roast but that may be just personal preference.    I …
Quick Tip by . October 22, 2009
Instant Coffee that actually tastes good?? Yes, it's absolutely true. Leave it to Starbucks, eh?
About the reviewer
Paul Savage ()
Ranked #56
I name and describe everything and classify most things. If 'it' already had a name, the one I just gave it is better.
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About this product


Starbucks has found a way to offer a truly great cup of coffee that you can prepare by just adding water. Other instant coffees taste flat and lifeless. Starbucks VIA® Ready Brew is different – it’s full-bodied and flavorful, just like the Starbucks® coffee you know and love.

It’s made with the highest-quality, ethically sourced 100% arabica beans. The magic is in a proprietary, all-natural process that we spent years perfecting. We microgrind the coffee in a way that preserves all of their essential oils and flavor. No other coffee company takes this step, and it makes all the difference.

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