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When Coffee Tastes Nasty


A couple of weeks ago, when I came downstairs for my morning coffee, there was a note that Gary left for me.  All it said was, “The coffee tastes nasty!” It was a good thing that I was standing right by the sink because it immediately came back out of my mouth.  So I ran to my computer and searched, “why does coffee taste bitter.” It was clear that everyone knew something to which I never really paid much attention, cleaning my drip coffee maker.


Conventional wisdom said to use equal parts water and distilled vinegar, fill the reservoir and run it through a cycle. Ours has a cleaning cycle, so I used that. I followed it up with two cycles of fresh filtered water to rinse thoroughly. The next morning Gary made coffee and left a similar note, “Coffee still tastes like sh..t! To be clear, Gary subsequently made himself a pot of French press coffee, and it tasted fine using the same beans.

Arrrggghhh! More Nasty Coffee

So I repeated the process that day. And that resulted in a similar note the following morning. The only thing we could assume was that there was something wrong with the coffeemaker like it is not able to heat the water hot enough or some other failure. While we did not toss the coffeemaker out, we decided to use our Keurig while I continue to search for answers online.

One day I am shopping on Amazon, and I see the picture below with a recommendation that I may be interested in this product – Goo Gone CoffeeMaker Cleaner. (Ok big brother is clearly watching my every online move.)

coffee cleaner
Contains hydroxyacetic acid, sulfamic acid, and citric acid.

It was $6.81 with prime shipping (now its $3.87 as an add-on with prime). As you can see from the bottle, I tried it using the same procedure. Clean once and rinse twice. I then made a pot of coffee. It was perfect. IT WORKED!

I am so glad I did not throw out the coffee maker. I spent $7.00 instead of $150.00, so I had to share my find with you.

Speaking of K-cups

I do not write about coffee much, so I thought I’d take this opportunity to also share with you our favorite the k-cups (for the Keurig system). We both like dark roast, full-bodied coffee. I will usually mix a full caff k-cup with a decaf K-cup to get my half-caff cup of joe.

K-cup variety suffers when looking for a good decaf. Fortunately, I found Barista Prima Coffeehouse Italian Roast Decaf. It has a fantastic flavor.

decaf coffee

The rest of the cups are all fully caffeinated. We keep a variety because that is what Gary likes. I could drink the Single Origin Sumatra Reserve all day long (until its time for wine of course).

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Thank you, Ryan Everton, for the use of your image.

coffee cleaner
Photo by Ryan Everton on Unsplash

That is all for now.






  1. Pam

    Hmmm…. we a two sided coffee maker, a single cup on one side of the machine and drip on the other. Even though we don’t use the drip side very often ( I do pour over in the mornings) I am thinking I need to snag this!!!

    • Pam – it does it all. It also works on the single cup side.

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