In Defense of City Blends Prima

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I’m behind on so many posts. Just to get back in the swing of things, I’m going to post about something short and sweet: City Blends Prima.

city blends prima logo

Recently I read a post on Esquire Magazine titled “In Defense of City Blends Coffee” which extols the virtues of 7-11 coffee, that affordable but efficient and, of course, convenient caffeine fix. But it makes no mention of City Blends Prima, and I feel I must add my thoughts on this particular topic, to enrich the conversation.

By chance, I wandered into a 7-11 stationed in a posh condo. I came in hoping they had regular brewed coffee. Thus I was surprised when I saw this instead of the regular City Blends setup that you find at most 7-11 outlets:

city blends prima self service machine

At first I thought this was the regular self-service coffee, and “Prima” was just the name of the machine. Then I noticed the prices.

double the cost of a regular city blends cup

Currently, an 8oz cup of regular City Blends Americano coffee is around P20. Prima costs P40 for a same size cup – double the cost!

I asked the person manning the counter why Prima was more expensive than regular 7-11 coffee. I was told that it uses imported (Brazilian) arabica beans, while regular City Blends coffee uses local arabica beans. Oooo, fancy!

The City Blends line prides itself in using 100% arabica beans. However, I read on another blog post that Prima actually uses some barako (liberica) beans in its blend…which wouldn’t be a surprise, because pure imported arabica beans could be expensive. An 8oz cup of Americano made from pure imported beans may cost more than just P40!

I’m not exactly complaining even if it’s not pure arabica, because the blend is ultimately delicious – richer and fuller in flavor than regular City Blends coffee. And just look at that luxurious crema!

I swear this is americano not cappuccino

I’m not knocking regular City Blends coffee, though. Local arabica can compete with the best of them, and coffee enthusiasts everywhere agree: 7-11 coffee, even the non-Prima kind, is really good, especially for the price. But give Prima a shot, and you’ll notice the difference in quality, too.

I’ve only personally seen one 7-11 branch that carries City Blends Prima, and it’s at this address:

Knightsbridge Residences
4392 B. Valdez, Makati City
Metro Manila

Does the 7-11 branch near you carry City Blends Prima? Share the branch name and address here, and let’s make it a more comprehensive list!

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