Can you really brew decent coffee in a tea bag?

I’ve never taken a camping trip with a French press. I’ve always been fortunate enough to camp with coffee connoisseurs who take care of that, although I guess it gets a little tedious. Unfortunately, instant coffee is the only viable option, and it tastes a much like a wedgie. What’s a caffeine-deprived outdoor explorer to do when faced with the choice between cumbersome equipment and foul-tasting sludge?

With that topic in mind, a few companies have taken a detour: putting pre-ground coffee in a tea bag and offering it to both outdoor enthusiasts and lazy homebrewers. Coffee Singles are individual bags of ready-to-steep coffee from Folgers. Hugo Tea, a tea company headquartered in Santa Cruz, sells a similar product, while Steeped, a coffee company based in Santa Cruz, received thousands of dollars on Kickstarter for its teabagged coffee.

Personally, I’ve always been suspicious of coffee in a tea bag. How could a cup of hot water provide the same flavor-enhancing extraction as a pour-over, French press, or drip coffee machine? But, with a summer full of outdoor activities ahead of me and a dislike for Sanka’s metallic aftertaste, I decided to try a new brand: Wildland Coffee.

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