Thursday, June 1, 2017

*Natural* Coffee Making Methods

What’s the most you’d pay for your cup of coffee? Here at Espresso Bella, we charge $2.00 on average for a coffee beverage. Other companies range anywhere from $3-$7.
What if we told you some people spend a whopping $50-$60 CDN on a cup of coffee, and that the beans used in that coffee were picked from animal feces? YUP. You read that right and apparently it is more common than we thought (and enjoyed by many.) I know this information is cringe-worthy and the thought of it may make your stomach turn, but you need to continue reading this!

This Coffee making process is quite common and happens around the globe. It is a greener approach to fermenting coffee beans and leaves an unattainable favour on the beans!

First up- we head to Indonesia where
Kopi Luwak coffee originated. This method involves the
Indonesia Civet Cat- which belongs to the Viverrida Family. These Civet Cats survive off of the ripest coffee cherries in Indonesia. During digestion, the coffee cherries and pulp are removed and digested, however the bean remains whole. This is where the ‘unique’ fermentation process occurs that is responsible for the coffee beans unique taste. After 24 hours, the coffee beans are defecated by the civet cat. The coffee beans are handpicked, washed, dried, pounded to remove the beans skin, sorted and finally roasted. The taste of the Kopi Luwak coffee is explained to be earthy, smooth and surprisingly less bitter than a regular cup of Arabica coffee. The average cost of Kopi Luwak coffee sits at about $100 US per pound.

In Central-South Asia, you can find & try Coati Coffee! A Coati’s diet also consists of Jungle Fruits- mainly coffee cherries that are very ripe – determined by their impeccable sense of smell. While the coffee beans are protected by an outer shell, some of the digestive chemicals get absorbed and natural fermentation occurs in the Coati’s belly. This fermentation process breaks down the bitterness of the coffee and gives a mild chocolate-nut flavour (*cringes*) with a hint of fruity goodness. The coffee beans are 100% Arabica and produced mainly in Peru.

In Thailand, the delicacy is referred to as Black Ivory Coffee. Black Ivory was created and founded by

Torontonian Blake Dinkin. The coffee cherries are ingested by Thailand’s wild Elephants. These elephants eat raw coffee cherries mixed in with their diets. Some elephants prefer their cherries plain, with rice, or with bananas- this all has an effect on the final taste of the coffee. Each elephant eats 150kg of food a day. Dinkin slips a few cherries into the elephant’s meals on the daily. It takes approximately two days for the coffee beans to be passed through the elephants. To make a single kilogram of coffee, it takes around 33 kg of cherries. Many of the beans consumed are crushed when the elephants chew and cannot be used. Dinkin expressed that the taste did not come right away- for at first the coffee tasted awful. Nine years later, he managed to master the coffees taste by altering what the elephants ate with the cherries. Black Ivory is explained to be floral, earthy and full bodied. The average cost of a cup of this sits at about $50-$60 and can be purchased in many hotels.

These three coffee making methods are fairly similar in regards to a mammal consuming, fermenting and digesting the coffee beans. But our final coffee making method doesn’t involve an animal’s consumption entirely (thank goodness.) Wild Bat Coffee was founded in Costa Rica. The wild bats feed off of the Coffee Cherries. The bats break down the skin, feed on the cherry pulp and lick the sugar-rich mucilage initiating a uniquely natural coffee processing method. The bats are too small to eat and digest the actual coffee beans, so nature takes its course on the bean itself, opposed to the bats stomach! The coffee beans are left on the tree and exposed to the sun as nature's own way of drying the coffee in its par ... chment. The coffee is known to be remarkable fruity and floral and its acidity is very delicate!
So, would you try these?
The prices alone is ridiculous in our opinion; however it is understandable with the amount of physical labour and time that goes into creating these unique blends.
Unfortunately, the knowledge of the process alone was enough of a turn off.
However, these blends are fairly popular and loved by many- so the taste has to be enjoyable.

Do you know of any other natural Coffee making processes? Let us know!