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Crema Coffee Subscription Review: Blend and Roast Selections

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Have you ever been accused of coffee snobbery? We can assure you, it’s a real condition that involves an unwillingness to settle for less than amazing coffee.

There’s nothing wrong with other coffees, but once you tasted the good stuff, there’s no going back. The problem is, it’s tough to find high-quality beans at your local grocery store.

Crema Coffee subscription seeks to satisfy the coffee snob in you with their carefully cultivated list of American-based micro-roasters. We gave their service a try and have to admit that they have something special.

Things to Consider Before Starting a Coffee Subscription

Casual coffee drinkers are not likely to subscribe to coffee service, so if you’re considering one, you must love your beans. That said, even the most discerning coffee enthusiast should do their homework before starting a coffee subscription.

Selection of Blends

Some people join a coffee subscription service to sample a variety of blends. If this is your goal, make sure the service you join can supply plenty of variety.

Think about what’s important to you. Do you only want single-origin or fair-trade certified blends? There are plenty of subscription coffee services that specialize in certified coffees. Make sure you choose one that has plenty of those options.

Frequency of Deliveries

Another big reason for joining is establishing a regular supply of coffee you love. You may want to make sure you have control over your deliveries and an option to alter your frequency.

Is the Price Right?

You’ve come this far, so you’re probably not a run-of-the-mill coffee drinker. Remember that certified coffees and small-batch blends cost more than your average pound of coffee. However, your coffee habit needs to be affordable.

Shipping Methods

Speaking of costs, be wary of shipping charges. Some options may come with free shipping but less convenience, but you don’t want to pay more in shipping than you spend on the coffee.

Crema Coffee Subscription Overview

crema coffee

Based in Portland, Oregon, Crema.co launched in 2015 as a market for artisan coffee lovers. Their cool, eclectic vibe fits with the feel of their home base, and the entire coffee drinking industry.

This company wants to change the way we view coffee. They put a lot of effort into cultivating an eclectic list of roasters, but also seek to educate the coffee-drinking community.

Crema.co’s website is loaded with information about coffee, from different roasts to processing methods. You can even download the information in their Coffee Handbook.

About the Roasters

Crema.co works with a selection of artisan micro-roasters from across the United States. Every roaster Crema.co works with commits to ethical relations at every stage of the coffee process.

At our last peek, Crema.co had more than forty roasters listed on their site. Though there are several West Coast roasteries, there are many roasters from the Plains, Midwestern, and East Coast states.

What You Get

The star of this show is the coffee, and Crema.co makes that clear. They don’t rely on bells and whistles with any of their boxes. You get the coffee nestled neatly in an attractive box.

Things We Like

  • They have an excellent selection of blends to choose from, including single-origin and fair-trade certified options.
  • With their playlist features, you select the coffees that appeal to you, so you’re in complete control over what you receive.
  • Flexible delivery schedules mean you can pick the frequency that’s right for you and pause your subscription if you need to.
  • You can choose a home subscription or sign on your whole office through their workplace subscriptions.
  • They have a “try it free” option that allows you to sample and rate some selections before signing up.

Room for Improvement

  • It’s a little overwhelming to start your playlist, even if you narrow your choices by the roast. It would help to have a little more guidance at the start.
  • Prices vary by roaster and blend, and some can be quite high for a 12-ounce bag.
  • It would be awesome to have a “surprise” option where they select blends based on your taste profile.

Features & Benefits of a Crema Coffee Subscription

It’s Easy to Join

How many companies let you start a subscription with a free product? Crema.co does just that. To start a subscription, you create an account and receive a three-pack sampler for free. You don’t even pay for shipping!

Be aware, to create your account, you have to enter a credit card. Only people who subscribe are eligible for the “welcome kit.”

From there, you can browse available coffees to identify ones you’d like to try. You also decide on your shipment frequency (every three days up to once per month).

Your Custom Playlist

Crema.co uses a playlist to cultivate your coffee list. Simply browse the catalog of coffees and add the ones you like to your custom playlist.

Though there are dozens of coffees to choose from, you can narrow your search by size, grind, roaster, certification, roast, and type. You can spend a lot of time searching through available coffee options because there is so much variety.

Once you create a list, it’s easy to move things around with a simple drag and drop feature. The playlist even tells you when to expect your next delivery.

Flexible Membership

Have you ever joined a subscription service that’s impossible to change? Crema.co doesn’t just offer a lot of options, they make it easy to change your frequency, or even pause your subscription.

Simply log in to your account and click on “manage subscription” under your account. Your playlist appears on the screen, and you can get to work. Pause your playlist or change the frequency of delivery.

Also, we mentioned that some of the coffees are a little pricier. Since you have complete control over your playlist, you can avoid coffees that don’t fit with your budget. Crema.co doesn’t surprise you, but they also don’t send you coffees you don’t want.

Selection of Coffees

As we noted above, it can be overwhelming to get started. Each coffee lists the price, roaster, type of roast, and a flavor profile. We narrowed the list to whole bean medium-dark and dark roasts, but there were still more than fifty coffees to peruse.

crema coffee

The coffee menu is easy to navigate. Crema.co includes pictures for each coffee to identify the primary flavor notes. They range from fruits to sweet treats, and there are plenty of unique blends. For example, Ladro Roasting’s Queen Anne Blend has flavor notes of clementine, fig, and hazelnut.

While some users note that they don’t have the variety found with other subscription companies, we felt that there were more than enough options available. They also have a selection of grinding options in case you don’t have access to a grinder.

The Brew Log

The Brew Log is another cool feature that Crema.co offers to customers. After you rate your third bag of coffee, you unlock this feature.

By rating the coffees, you can explore your preferences and learn more about the characteristics of coffee that appeal most to you. Who knows, you may be surprised by what you discover!

Coffee Education

Crema.co is so committed to helping people love coffee that they provide educational information and instructions on alternative brewing methods. You can even download their Coffee Handbook from the site.

Have you ever wondered why your coffee at home isn’t quite as good as when you go to your local coffee shop? Crema.co’s “How to Brew Coffee” guide may have the answers you seek.

From water quality to brew time, they break down the steps to a perfect cup of coffee. There are even step-by-step instructions with crystal clear photos.

If you’re ready to stray from your traditional drip coffee maker, check out their how-to pages. They provide tips and tricks for making the perfect cup with a French press, portable pour-over dripper, or Chemex.

The Coffee Handbook also includes general coffee education from processing methods to coffee varieties. For example, have you ever wondered what single-origin means? It means that the coffee came from one country instead of several.

Give the Gift of Coffee

You have four options for gifting Crema.co coffee – coffee, rare coffee, brewing kits, or site credit. Since Crema.co is all about personal choice and control over coffee drinking, they extend the freedom of choice to your giftee.

Everything is handled digitally, so you don’t have to worry about a card getting lost in the mail or misplaced. The gift goes directly to your recipient’s email, and everything transfers electronically from that point.

Workplace Coffee

Do you have an office full of coffee drinkers? If you’re frustrated with trying to keep all of your coffee drinkers happy, Crema.co may have the answer to your problem.

Simply create a business profile, then set your budget and delivery frequency. You can even adjust which coffees your team sees. For example, you could filter out all light roasts or all coffees over a certain price.

Once you set your company up with Crema.co, invite your team to join the fun. They can rate coffees and make suggestions for upcoming shipments. Your office receives shipments from the roasters within three to five days after roasting.

Compared to Other Coffee Subscription Services

Crema.co has a lot to offer, but maybe they’re not quite right for you. That’s okay, we’re happy to compare them to a few other subscription services to help you find the right fit.

Atlas Coffee Club

We’ve tried Atlas Coffee Club and truly appreciate the quality and taste. They draw from more than 50 countries around the world and offer more than 800 flavor combinations.

Start by answering a few questions about quantity, frequency of delivery, roast preference, and whether you want whole bean or ground. Though Atlas offers more variety, you can only choose to receive shipments monthly or every two weeks.

Pricing depends on the quantity you choose. The three options are half bag, single bag, or double bag, and they average a little less than other services.

Your shipment includes a single-origin coffee plus some cool extras. Atlas boxes contain a postcard from the country of origin, coffee country information card, plus tasting notes and brewing tips. Track your progress and preferences on their site.

Bean Box

Bean Box is another popular choice in coffee subscriptions. However, unlike Crema.co, this company only features roasters from the Pacific Northwest. Their 35 roasters provide a lot of variety, though.

Pricing is a little different from Bean Box as well. Instead of pay-per-coffee, you choose between the Bean Box Sampler and the Coffee of the Month, then pay a flat fee based on your selection. If you select the Coffee of the Month, you can save a little by prepaying.

Joining Bean Box is super easy, and they offer a lot of sampler packs to expose you to more flavors. Bean Box tends to include little surprises with their coffees, which may be a factor for you.

Driftaway Coffee

Driftaway Coffee has a massive following. As a subscription service, it provides a slightly different experience, including an option for cold brew coffee lovers.

Instead of cultivating coffees from other roasters, they provide single-origin coffee roasted in their Brooklyn, New York roastery. They offer some unique flavor combinations but have fewer choices than other subscription services.

Driftaway subscriptions start with a tasting kit to learn your preferences. Simply taste and rate the four samples. Review every shipment to fine-tune your coffee preferences.

The Bottom Line

Crema.co is still relatively new, but they’ve grown a lot over the past several years. They have a lot to offer and continue to address critiques, like expanding their options from whole beans to a few different grind options.

This coffee subscription is easy to use, customizable and loaded with interesting blends. Crema.co definitely has something special to offer coffee snobs across the United States.

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