When i’m bored, I sometimes drive around getting lost in the fancy neighborhoods, looking at houses that could pass for castles of American royalty.
I enjoy these drives because usually the streets are fairly empty, leaving me the space to drive as slow as I want contemplating the lives of the fancy people who live there.
I’m always told, the true rich and wealthy don’t look like it.
So I often wonder what their mula is spent on in place of expensive jewelry and $1,000 t-shirts.
I didn’t have to wonder during my drive a few days ago, however.
I was given an answer that kept my mind occupied and stuck in disbelief.
Apparently, there are individuals in this land of the free, who pay top-dollar for strange things.
One of those things being coffee (kopi), harvested from the feces, of civets (luwak).
A few days ago, I learned about Kopi Luwak or civet coffee.
And I’ve been disgusted ever since.
A civet, also known by a few as a cheetah-raccoon-lemur-rat, is a “cat-like” mammal that lives and flourishes in parts of Southern Asia. This animal’s favorite food is the coffee cherry, which incidentally is what coffee beans come from, and the fuel behind this lucrative business.
Now, once the cat-rat has it’s fill of coffee cherry delight, it’s digestion process gets going and of course removes everything except for the cherry’s seed – the coffee bean.
Oh, you thought it was an actual bean?
Nope. Society has fooled you again.
It’s really a seed.
Anywho, these undigested and freshly fermented beans are muddled together with everything else eaten by the civet, and excreted.
The farmers then pick them out, clean them, prep them, package them, and send them to people who have paid hundreds by the pounds to sip a fresh cup of cat-rat poop coffee while reading about stocks in the paper and watching Good Morning America.
Walk with me here.
I consider myself kind of knowledgeable about coffee.
I’ve started taking steps towards becoming a coffee pro, and one of those steps was a course in coffee cupping.
Coffee cupping is comparable to wine tasting, so imagine my eagerness to grab a sip that I could spread across my palette to uncover the magic civet coffee must posses.
Can you see it?
Can you see my eagerness?
Now imagine my suprise, when reviews revealed that the only special thing about civet coffee is the ridiculously high price.
Average Joe from down the street getting coffee from Starbucks, is coming out with a better deal compared to Upscale Danny sipping on his aeropressed poo. To have the same – if not better – cup of coffee, Joe enjoys convenience AND a considerably cheaper price.
Apparently for some of America’s royalty, the best part of waking up, is spending money to have feces in your cup.