Review: CrioBru Cacao

Here I go again, testing a new product to see if it’s worth the hype. (Looking at you, Bang Cookies.)

This morning, I tried the CrioBru cacao beverage instead of my usual coffee. I wanted to see if A) it would satisfy my (probably made-up) morning requirement of having a hot-beverage jolt to get me going, B) it could provide a healthier alternative to caffeine, and C) it tasted good enough to spend the money regularly on it.

The CrioBru gang have many flavors to choose, but given my love for all things chocolatey-sweet, I went with the basic double variety. The initial skinny:

  • For a 12-oz. bag of grounds, including shipping, it’s $18. (As a reference, I’d pay $7.50 for the same size of Dunkin’ Donuts ground.) If that’s a deal-breaker, then yeah… It ain’t cheap.
  • The first place I look on sites like this is their manufacturing page. While no company is going to hit it out of the park in every area, I was pleased with their methods and vision.
  • What especially interested me was the nutrient info. The phrase “natural appetite suppressant” didn’t escape my notice, either. ;-)

I followed the directions on the back of the bag, and used 2 tablespoons of grounds in my one-cup French press.

You’ll need to readjust your color expectations, as this is a lighter brown than the almost-black hue of brewed coffee. In fact, for a moment, I thought that 2 tablespoons weren’t going to be enough, because the brown just looked “weak.”

Another difference between this and coffee is the steep time. When I make my Dunkin’ Donuts brew every morning, I wait about 2-3 minutes before pouring it into the mug. The Crio directions say to steep for 6-8 minutes, then press, then drink.

I think I made it to the 4-minute mark before charging ahead. haha

Of course, all the above yammering is just stage dressing for the true test: What does it taste like?

For starters, it depends on your palate. I like my coffee sweet. I don’t need cream, but it can’t be bitter. So, as the Crio people tell you, it’s the best if you just sweeten or lighten it however you like.

I added a shot of ReddiWip out of the can, and my standard sweetener. And wow, is it ever tasty. Delicious, even.

It’s exactly like hot cocoa (because, actually, that’s what it is), but without the super-super-sugary sweetness. *You* control that aspect. Again, points for that. If you’re like me and also enjoy European drinking chocolate, there’s another readjustment of expectations, in that this brew’s consistency is that of coffee: much thinner than drinking chocolate.

I’m still waiting to see the nutritional effects, of course (especially the “appetite suppressant” part), but it was like having dessert for breakfast.

I wouldn’t begin to have the nerve to drink it straight, but different strokes and all that. The downside is that I want to have another mug of the stuff, and that will end up costing me down the line.

Great — one more obsession to wrangle.

However, I recommend this highly to anyone who wants to shake some caffeine, and who also loves chocolate. It’s not like the weak excuses for “mocha” flavor that some coffees attempt. This is the real deal, and you can definitely taste the difference.

They have smaller packages on the site, and there are variety packs to try as well. I say go for it if you’re curious! I loved it.

3 thoughts on “Review: CrioBru Cacao

    1. Rat Fink Post author

      I don’t think so. I mean, I do like it a lot, but on day 2, it’s starting to wear thin. #1 — it’s a lot more work in the morning. Takes more time to brew and babysit. #2 — I have to “dress it up” a bit more to get it to taste just right. #3 — I have to put it in the micro to warm it up before I drink it because of the required steep time.

      I’ll give it another few days before deciding whether or not to just keep it for once in a while, or use it every day. Meh!

      Reply

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