The world of coffee is vast and confusing. Walking down a coffee aisle at your grocery store of choice in 2017 is like trying to navigate your way through a thick forest with only a small hatchet to clear your path. Fair trade, non-GMO, arabica, robusta, Brazilian, Colombian, etcetera and so on. The choices for coffee are nearly infinite and one can get overwhelmed searching for the perfect blend. Some people like 100% Colombian. Others prefer a lighter roast, like the Breakfast Blend or Starbuck’s infamous Pike Place.
But me? I’m a Folgers man through and through. Sure, I’ll head to Starbucks every so often when I’m really feeling fancy and I’ve got a couple bucks burning a hole in my pocket, but for my money, it doesn’t get any better than a hot cup of Folgers French Roast. Folgers isn’t just a coffee. It’s a way of life. It’s blue-collar, for Christ’s sake. I can make a batch of #coldbrew at my house for next to nothing, and when I decide on a Saturday afternoon that my guests and I are in need of a pick me up nothing comes to the rescue quite like a nice 10-cup pot of good old-fashioned Folgers brew.
A few weeks ago, I ripped on the popular seltzer water called La Croix, a shameless copycat of the more established, more elite Perrier. I realize that for me to now say Folgers, a relatively cheap brand of coffee that is labeled by many as “shitty” could be misconstrued as the pot calling the kettle black. I’m elitist when it comes to seltzer water but love Folgers? Folgers? The coffee that people shit on regularly and turn their nose up at? Yeah, you’re exactly right. Because just like Perrier, Folgers was around before all of the others.
The other night I was talking with a friend about our go-to coffee brands, and she adamantly defended Starbucks and other coffees of that ilk. She claimed that because she’s been drinking those brands since she started coffee, switching to Folgers would be impossible. “Folgers is poor people shit.” “You’re an idiot.” “Coffee should have flavor, not taste like a cup full of hot chalk.” While I respectfully disagreed with her opinion in the moment because I (unsuccessfully) was trying to have sex with her, I’d like to say here, now, that she’s full of shit. If I did a blind taste test of Folgers French Roast and a French Roast from a massive shop like Starbucks, I’m willing to bet that most of the people who turn their nose up at Folgers wouldn’t be able to tell the difference.
Before Starbucks, Biggby, Intelligentsia, and all of these other small batch, locally roasted coffee beans came on the scene there was Folgers. Your great-grandpa probably drank Folgers before he headed off to his job at the automotive plant or coal mine for work every day. And that’s why I like it so much. The company was founded in 1850. I’m drinking a part of history every time I brew up a piping hot batch of the Folg. Nobody will give it a shot because they’ve been poisoned by Carmel-Mocha frappuccinos and soy lattes. Before people could buy a cup of some insanely overpriced, bullshit frozen coffee drink on every single corner of their locale, there was Folgers. They’ve been around forever, and that is partially why I choose to drink the cup of joe that truly is, at least for me, the best part of waking up.
Price points for a tub of Folgers versus a small twelve-ounce bag of Pike Place is a joke. I can get twice as much coffee by choosing to buy Folgers as I can buying Starbucks. And yeah, they’re both part of giant conglomerates, but Folgers remains my brand of choice because they’re established. They make a consistent product that doesn’t break the bank and still get’s me my caffeine fix. Why is it necessary for me to be buying a four dollar cup of coffee from a 35-year-old barista covered in tats at the corner shop when I can get a thermos full of Folgers for next to nothing? It’s completely asinine, and so is shitting on Folgers. Get off your high horse and give it a shot next time you’re perusing the coffee aisle at your supermarket. You won’t be disappointed. .