Sponsored Review Disclosure:
I not only received four shipments of coffee for free in exchange for a review, but this was also a sponsored coffee subscription review, meaning I was also paid $100 to have the review moved to the front of the editorial calendar.
Although a sponsored review is expedited, it does not mean that the coffee subscription will always be reviewed favorably. But, if the coffee subscription is reviewed negatively, the company is given the option to “abort” the review's impending publication.
You can learn more about my sponsored review policy here.
I welcome your feedback about this sponsored review format, so please share your feedback by either leaving a comment below or contacting me privately here.
In today's review, I'll be sharing my experience with Moustache Coffee Club, a single-roaster coffee subscription service that brings specialty coffee right to your doorstep.
The premise is very simple, sign up and receive freshly roasted, light roast single-origin coffee on a weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly basis.
At the time of this review, there are no blends or dark roasts, so if that's what you're into then you're probably better off with another subscription. I encourage you to check out my Ultimate Guide to Coffee Subscriptions or coffee subscription comparison page for more info.
What Makes Moustache Coffee Club Different?
Moustache Coffee Club sets itself aside from other coffee subscription services in that it is not only dead simple, but it is perfect for specialty coffee lovers who value freshly roasted coffee over customization.
Sure, you don't get roaster or blend variety, but for those who already know they like fresh light roast coffee, this really shouldn't matter too much.
You still get to try a variety of different origins from excellent coffee farmers and producers, and the coffee arrives at your doorstep oh-so-fresh.
Freshest Coffee You Can Get from a Subscription Service
Moustache roasts all of their coffee in-house every Tuesday, and then the coffee is shipped to customers that same day.
Of the 4 shipments I received when I trialed Moustache, 3 arrived by Friday and 1 arrived on a Thursday. In fact, the coffee was so fresh that it would arrive before it was recommended for drinking, since freshly roasted coffee needs time to release the excess CO2 from roasting.
Moustache Coffee Club is headquartered in Portland, OR, so if you live on the West Coast you're probably at an advantage when it comes to receiving the coffee quickly.
Exchange Starbucks Gift Cards for Moustache Credit
One of my favorite features of Moustache Coffee Club is that they accept Starbucks gift cards in exchange for credit towards Moustache coffee.
Genius. Absolutely genius.
For those of us coffee snobs who receive Starbucks gift cards during the holidays from our well-intentioned, yet naive friends and family, Moustache is really offering a great solution.
Of course, I'm curious about what they do with the Starbucks gift cards once they're in Moustache's possession. Resell?
My business mind digresses…
Anyways, all you have to do is follow the link on their website, enter the card's respective codes, and you'll then be credited with Moustache dolla$ (I made this last part up, they don't call their credits by this name).
Delivery #1/What Comes in the Box?
I was really impressed with my first shipment. Here's what stood out:
- The packagingThe coffee arrived in a small box, with pretty similar packaging to what Mistobox provides. It may seem trivial, but the box itself makes me feel like I'm receiving something special.
- Re-sealable bagsLike Driftaway's subscription service, Moustache coffee bags are re-sealable with a ziplock-esque system. There are also little divots at the top of the bags to easily tear the bag open. No scissors necessary!
- Informational “postcard”This is pretty common in a lot of the coffee subscriptions I tried, but these cards were thoroughly informative when it came to learning more about the coffee's origins.
- Delicious CoffeeI was really impressed with the first coffee I received from Moustache. It really goes to show that fresh coffee is tough to beat.The coffee itself was called Genova, and it came from Colombia's Nariño region.Notes of chocolate and cola dominated, and it worked great as espresso and drip.
Delivery #2 came exactly one week later, and it was another Colombian coffee, the Amador.
Interestingly enough, the coffee came from the exact same region of Nariño, only a different producer than the previous coffee.
Additionally, the variety, processing method, and growing altitude were all virtually identical to the Genova.
The coffee was also excellent, but completely different in terms of tasting notes. Less chocolate, more bright acidity. Still, this coffee was even better than the first one, which I think says a lot.
My third delivery was a Rwandan coffee: the Kanzu Lot 19.
Also delicious, but not quite on the same level as the previous two coffees I had received. It was slightly more difficult to dial in, even though it still tasted very good.
The fourth and final delivery of my trial with Moustache Coffee Club was the Santa Teresa, a honey processed coffee from Costa Rica.
So what do you need to know about the coffee that sets it apart from other coffee subscriptions?
First thing you should know is that the coffee comes from various origins and producers, but is roasted exclusively by Moustache Coffee Club before eventually being shipped to customers.
All the coffee you receive is from a single origin, and there are no blends or dark roast options at the time of this review (January, 2018). So if either of these things are what you're looking for, you might as well look into other options.
Check out my Ultimate Guide To Coffee Subscriptions for guidance.
In terms of taste, I found that all of the coffee I've tried from Moustache has tasted great. The coffee fits my personal taste preferences perfectly, despite only receiving one African coffee so far (ironically, my least favorite of those I received).
I found Moustache Coffee Club to be very reasonably-priced when compared to other coffee subscription services out there.
They offer multiple pricing options, all of which primarily depend on how frequently you want your coffee.
For U.S. individuals, the pricing breakdown is as follows:
- 12oz bag, delivered weekly or bi-weekly – $19 or $1.58 per ounce
- 6oz bag, delivered bi-weekly or monthly – $13 or $2.16 per ounce
So while you can have the coffee shipped to you on a weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly basis, you can only receive 12oz bags on a weekly or bi-weekly basis, while you can only receive 6oz bags on a bi-weekly or monthly basis.
This makes your monthly cost on an individual plan at least $13 and at most, $76.
$19 certainly isn't outrageous for specialty coffee, especially when its roasted this fresh and shipping costs are included. But it also isn't the most affordable coffee subscription service out there.
There are also some other interesting plans available, such as the Chemex plans.
These dudes are some smart marketers.
Most of the other coffee subscription services out there try to incentivize longer term commitments by simply discounting your coffee for the bulk purchase.
Well, an 8-cup Chemex is about a $45 value, which means a 6-12 month commitment has a net price of $411.
For either a 6 month or 12 month commitment, that brings the cost of each bag of coffee down to $17.13, or $1.43 per ounce. Here's my math: (12oz x 24 weeks)/$411= $1.43 per ounce.
So the only decision that needs to be made here is how frequently you want your coffee, because it's the same price whether you go for the bi-weekly prepay or the weekly prepay.
If you're Canadian, you have 3 plans you can choose from:
Basically, you're paying a $6 premium if you live and Canada. You also only have 12oz bags as an option.
So it's $2.08 per ounce for any of the Canadian plans, with the minimum monthly price at $24.99 and the maximum price at $99.96.
I'd list the International Pricing here as well, but I'll let you check that out on their website.
Finally, they also have plans for offices that are reasonably priced. Check 'em out here.
In the end, Moustache actually offers even more configurations than what they list on the site. So if you want 6oz of coffee on a weekly basis, they can craft a plan for you even if it isn't listed.
Shipping was incredibly quick. All coffee arrived 2-3 days post-roast. This is almost unheard of for a coffee subscription service.
Moustache brags on their site that they invented the “Drink After” date, indicating the coffee arrives so fresh, it's still too soon to drink it.
Moustache will send email notifications when your coffee is selected, shipped, and delivered. Perhaps a little bit excessive, but still nice to know for some.
Website User Experience
It may be trivial to many, but I think that the overall user/customer experience is very important when considering a coffee subscription.
The subscription experience should not only be a straightforward process from the start, but also over the course of one's entire membership, especially when changes need to be made.
While the signup process is very straightforward, I think managing one's account through the website could be improved.
For one, the “my account” section looks like a pretty ugly list of text, and it's a slight nuisance to find the section that is most relevant to what you're trying to do.
I also don't like how the only way to get support is through emailing, which is listed all the way at the bottom of the “my account” page. I think this should be in a more obvious place.
The fact that you have to email to cancel your subscription also bothers me a bit. Most subscriptions I've tried allow you to cancel your subscription with the click of a button, or at the very least, pause your subscription indefinitely.
Moustache only has a button for skipping up to 2 deliveries. I assume you can keep clicking this button week after week, but I think the customer should be in control of how long they want to stay paused.
Overall, I thought there was much that could be improved with the website's interface from a subscription management and support perspective.
Aside from these small gripes, the website is easy enough to use.
Customer service might be easy for some to overlook in a coffee subscription, but I think it's one of the more important things to pay attention to.
I didn't really have any issues with my subscription when I was trying it out, so my review of this particular category should not carry too much weight from me individually.
Still, there were a few things that stood out to me that I think prospective customers should pay attention to.
- There is no phone supportIt is actually pretty uncommon for a coffee subscription service to have phone support, but there are subscriptions that do offer it, so if this is important to you keep this in mind.
- No way to update email preferencesI received multiple notification emails about my subscription, but I noticed there was no link in any of the emails to update my subscription preferences.So I went over to the website, but still didn't see anything. In the end, a minor grievance, but I still think it's something worth noting.
I highly recommend Moustache Coffee Club for coffee lovers who appreciate different origins and super-fresh coffee above all else.
Decaf drinkers can also benefit from this coffee club, because Moustache has decaf coffee available as part of their subscription plans.
If you are looking to get coffee for your office and staff, Moustache Coffee Club is also a great option because they have plans crafted especially for larger groups.
Finally, it is an excellent choice if you exclusively drink light roast, single-origin coffee.
Moustache Coffee Club will not be for everyone though…
If you like to drink coffee blends and darker roasts, Moustache will not be for you, since they don't offer blends or dark roasts in their subscription plans.
If you're looking to try coffee from different roasters, Moustache also misses the mark since all of the coffee they send to subscribers is roasted in-house by their master roaster.
Finally, if you're outside of the States, it's a pretty tough sell given the longer shipping times and higher price tag. So to me, it really only makes sense to sign up with Moustache if you're in the U.S.
Get $10 Off Your First Order
If you're interested in giving Moustache Coffee Club a try, you can get $10 off your first order by clicking the link below:
They also have a free trial where you can get a 6oz bag of coffee at no cost to you. You do have to put a credit card number down, but you won't be charged if you decide not to continue.
Tried Moustache Coffee Club?
If you've tried or are currently subscribed to Moustache Coffee Club, we'd love to hear from you. Leave your comments and reviews below!
Similarly, if you have any questions about the subscription, leave 'em below.