My husband and I love our coffee. By far we prefer coffee made in our vintage 1950's perculator which brews excellent coffee. However, it is not convenient if only wanting to brew a single cup. The Melitta Espresso & Cappuccino maker brews a lovely coffee but it is more for speciality coffees rather than daily use. Several years ago, we bought a Melitta One:One single serve coffee maker that used round pods similar to Tetley tea bags. The biggest problem we had was finding the coffee pods for the Melitta so when it started leaking, I splurged on a new Keurig single serve coffee maker in 2011. As with our last house, the Keurig is one of two small kitchen appliances that have earned a place on the counter, never put into storage.
K-cups are convenient. I did find an online source that sold certain K-cups as low as 40¢ each and was happy with my order but after several high pressure emails followed by a multitude of spam from them, I won't deal with them again! Sam's Club is the best price for K-cups followed by Bed Breakfast and Beyond but our local No Frills has been putting the K-cups on sale as well. I was looking for a few extra K-cups for holiday entertaining and came across the President's Choice The Great Canadian single serve coffee pods. A twelve pack was $4.99 (42¢) so I decided to try them even though I am a bit leery of cheap K-cups. I brought back a package of Grove Square K-cups from Florida only to find out it's instant coffee!
The soft-bottom pod has only a puncture in the top and the bottom becomes firm as the coffee swells during brewing. The foil top can be removed then pushing hard bottom to top the soft bottom and coffee will pop off the ring for the compost. You are left with a small, plastic ring considerably smaller than the K-cup. I'm sure I will come up with a few ways to reuse these rings but if tossing, they should be cut to prevent any problems with wildlife strangling.
The soft-bottom coffee pods are packaged in a vacuum sealed, foil pouch inside a small cardboard box, both of which can be recycled. The pods should be stored in the pouch, in the refrigerator for best flavour. Another downside to the President's Choice soft-bottom coffee pods is the are only available in medium roast and west coast dark roast but both gourmet coffess made with 100% Arabica coffee. I suspect they may introduce flavoured coffee pods but again, if you are looking for a nice alternative to K-cups, this coffee is good.