Consumerism Reports: $44 Coffee Pods Save America

Cometeer's frozen coffee capsules taste just like coffee

Coffee pod in transparent mug.
Consumerism Reports

Welcome to Consumerism Reports, a recurring series about all my devices and products. I’d like to clarify that it is NOT a tech column, a food column, or a wellness column — it’s about spending money to speed up self-transformation, and then buying more stuff when that doesn’t work. And so I have acquired an endless array of gadgets, tools, powders, and liquids: from products that promise to make my face look more triangular to tonics that make the skin around my eyes less purple. Do any of them work?

Ah, coffee coffee coffee, that dirt brown and enlivening stuff. Do not talk to me before I’ve had it, because my brain no worky without it. And don’t talk to me after I’ve had it, because I won’t be able to hear you when my head is in the cupboard looking for a fresh bottle of Dave’s coffee syrup, that hyper-viscous Rhode Island-inspired treat that once briefly made me a high-IQ genius. I want coffee all the time!

Luckily, my new friends at Cometeer sent me an innovative new at-home coffee pod treatment after I begged for it with a lot of exclamation marks in the Twitter DMs. Cometeer, according to their promotional materials, is a “world class cup of coffee that is ready in seconds.” Cometeer partners with roasters you’ve probably heard of like Go Get Em Tiger and Counter Culture and flash-freezes a super-strong liquid coffee into a little aluminum pod, reminiscent of a Nespresso. Cometeer sends you a box packed in dry ice – 32 pods are $44 – and all you have to do is melt the frozen coffee disc inside the pod in hot water for hot coffee, or let the coffee melt in the fridge overnight.

Being sent anything in the mail is a Consumerism Reports rarity (I had to buy my own tomato timer and my own $399 facial vibrator, which is a cruel and inhumane fate), so I must admit that I was way hyped on Cometeer before it came in the mail. When it finally did, around four p.m. last Monday, I sucked it down with hyper-aggression, bedtime in five hours be damned. I was sent a variety pack, and I chose a brew by an English roaster called Square Mile to honor my muse, the Queen, who is currently in Scotland lying very still on the couch.

I prepared it first as cold brew and then later as regular hot coffee, with a little bit of half and half foamed on top. My verdict? That’s good mud, baby!

I’ve since tried Go Get Em Tiger pods, Joe pods, and Birch pods, the latter two of which brought me right back to grad school, when I was drinking coffee from those two places eight times a day. Sort of powerful, no? The sense memory made me wistful for that time when I would pop out to a coffee shop for a $5 cold brew in the interest of shirking other duties. So, in an effort to recreate the magic, I’ve taken to walking around the block in the summer midday heat holding a frozen Cometeer pod in my enclosed fist until it melts. It replicates the “leaving the house” part of grabbing a satisfying cup of joe, and when you return, your once-frozen coffee pod is ready for consumption. That’s the stuff!

Previously: The $6.99 Tomato Timer That Ensures It’s Always Tomato Time