Taste Test: Alpine Start Coffee

Alpine Start Coffee Review

Instant coffee gets a bad rap for tasting like dirt. But coffee doesn’t have to be terrible when you’re miles away from civilization. Founder and professional climber Matt Segal dreamed up the idea of good instant coffee while he was out in the Bugaboos. Alpine Start Coffee is here to change your mind.

I personally do not drink coffee—I think it all tastes like dirt, with the exception of affogatos. I enlisted the help of several friends to do some coffee taste testing for me on some recent backpacking trips.


Like all instant coffees, Alpine Start is easy to prep. Open a packet. Dump it into your cup. Boil 8 oz. of water. Dump into cup with powder. Stir. Voila, coffee! Each package comes with eight single serve packets.


Available through Amazon | Backcountry | REI

What the testers said about Alpine Start Coffee

“It’s pretty good but the flavor isn’t strong enough.” – Andrew

Jady says, “I think it’s good, but I also added caramel creamer, so it tastes mostly like caramel.”

Austin, used to cowboy coffee, put french vanilla creamer in his drink. He wanted another packet of Alpine Start the next day.

“It’s good enough. Tastes like coffee.” – Josh

Alpine Start Coffee Review

“It was very mild, and I didn’t put very much water in.” – Matt

“It was bland but fruity. The acidity is pretty low” reviewed other Matt.

Meghan said it tasted like gasoline. But then again, her other coffee also tasted like gasoline.

Each box retails for $8.99. Buy through Amazon, Backcountry or REI.

Want more ways to caffeinate while camping? I’ve got many tips. Is instant tea more your thing? Try Cusa Tea.

Alpine Start Coffee Review