Courtesy Cool Coffee Clique
There are plenty of pod coffeemakers out there these days. I've used several of them with various results; for me, they've won more on convenience and ease rather than coffee quality. Often the way the machines work prevents getting the kind of rich, intense coffee drinking experience that true afficionados favor. For most people, being disappointed in results would just lead to abandoning pod makers as a preferred method of brewing, but Courtney Adeleye is not most people. She had a vision that she could create a pod coffeemaker that could do both, and Cool Coffee Clique was born. The entrepreneur was no stranger to business building success. Before creating Cool Coffee Clique, Adeleye was running the day-to-day operations as founder & CEO of The Mane Choice Hair Solution and Foolproof Body. In addition, she was taking care of her family and concentrating on scaling her brands.
But coffee called to her. "My 'AHA!' moment came when I started running on no fuel in the mornings." Adeleye says. "I wanted a pick me up and I grabbed a cup of coffee. Up until that point I was not a coffee drinker." Adeleye was shocked at how disappointed she was in the brew. "My motto is: If I cannot find what I am looking for…I create it! I wanted a bold, tasty, and robust coffee. I then became obsessed, just like I am with everything I create."
The quest for the perfect coffee
New to coffee drinking, let alone coffee production, Adeleye set out to explore the full range of what was available, and found that coffee can be so much more than just a beverage. "During my coffee obsession journey, I learned that there was a large group of individuals that spoke the same love language…coffee! One cup of coffee could bring anyone together. One cup could start a conversation, which could turn into a long-lasting relationship. What I felt was missing was identity and community. This was the gap I wanted to bridge."
Courtesy Cool Coffee Clique
Adeleye began Cool Coffee Clique on a premise that the brand could be a place where "flavor meets community."
"Not only do we invest in our brand…we invest in our community. We meet and we network. We pour into our customers just as we do their cups."
One of the first challenges for Cool Coffee Clique was fixing the intensity factor in the coffee itself. Their Strong AF (And Flavorful) Premium Coffee promises to be at least 3X stronger than the average cup of coffee, and 4x more flavorful than some of the strongest coffee brands on the market. Adeleye looks for flavor, quality, and boldness without bitterness, which has become the hallmark of her products. "While tasting and testing coffee from all over the world, such as Latin America, Central Africa, East Africa, West Africa, India, Indonesia, Southeast Asia, Brazil, and Vietnam, I gathered enough research to analyze. I came up with the perfect coffee blend that delivered bold flavor and robust strength."
Bringing pink to coffee world
Adeleye embarked on a design process to create a brewer that would match the quality of the coffee, and when it came time to think about the look, she knew she wanted the machine to pack as much visual punch as the coffee packs taste. For her, that meant it had to be one color: pink.
"When I get asked why pink…. I respond, 'why not!'" she says. "Coffee is considered a strong and bold industry. Colors such as black, brown, and dark green are frequently used. So, I wanted to push the envelope. I wanted to show that strength doesn't come in a certain color and boldness doesn't come in a certain size. Our Cool Coffee Clique members are strong, bold, and confident. I could not think of any other color to represent that but pink!"
Testing Cool Coffee Clique maker and pods
The striking Meet Your Maker machine looks great, and is a terrific pop of color, but the important part is that it works. The coffee it produces rivals the intensity of coffee brewed with regular pots and presses and is robust without being acrid or burnt tasting. For Adeleye, the engagement with her community is key. "I want people to know that we are not just product manufacturers. We are the consumers too. It is not good enough for us, unless it's good enough for our consumers. Our products are not treated as commodities, they are created out of passion and with a purpose."
Adeleye says she has big plans for the brand. "Cool Coffee Clique is more than just coffee," she says. "We have premium teas and a delectable hot chocolate. What's next will be custom flavored coffees, pastries, and so much more!"
You can find your own Cool Coffee Clique maker and supplies at Cool Coffee Clique. Brewers are a very affordable $129, and 12 count boxes of pods start at $16.99.