Weasel Coffee Facts --Everything You Wanted to Know But Were Afraid to Ask!
It is truly a wonder how a cup of coffee can boost one’s mood whether it is early in the morning, a busy afternoon, or a cold evening. With the caffeine to boost your adrenaline, it’s absolutely understandable why busy people rely on this drink to get a clearer mind and to get things done. Moreover, there are now various mouthwatering flavors of coffee available in the market these days. There are also many other sources for your cup of joe aside from a coffee bean and these include nuts, beans, leaves, and surprise surprise – poop!
If you think the term weasel coffee is a euphemism then you’re right. The truth about this delicacy makes some people even from the coffee world, well, a bit queasy. What you’re about to read is about coffee fished from the last place you’d thought to look --weasel poop. Also known as Kopi Luwak or Ca Phe Chon.
Before you turn up your nose and decide that it’s not for you, know that when you happen to visit Da Lat Vietnam, there is a popular destination which serves weasel coffee while enjoying the scenic view of the city. Keep reading to learn more on how this famous coffee garden produce their own civet coffee bean.
The process of making this delicious coffee begins with tiny, ripe, red coffee berries which are fed to weasels. 5 kilograms of coffee are fed to the each civet each day during the season. One of the most interesting parts about this is that these weasels are free to choose which berries they want --and the weasels often pick the ripest, sweetest beans which turn out to be perfect for creating this exquisite Kopi Luwak coffee.
After the civets do the number two, workers sift through about 15 kilograms of poop to extract their initial investment of 5 kilograms of coffee. The excreted beans are then thoroughly washed to ensure they can be safe for human consumption and undergo the normal drying of regular coffee beans - 3 days under the sun. Once thoroughly dry, the beans are roasted and bagged, and finally ready to be sold.
Where does it get its taste?
The richness in flavor comes from the extraction of amino acids from the berries as the weasels digest them. Special acid and enzyme chemicals absorbed by the beans in the civet’s digestive system make the coffee less caffeinated but with a deeper, smoother taste.
The demand for Civets
Since the demand for civet coffee is getting higher, thousands of civet cats are employed to produce weasel coffee all over the world. However, unlike most coffee-producing gardens in Vietnam where civets are given proper care and nutrition, some civets are placed in tiny, unsanitary cages without interaction from other civets and left with only coffee beans for food. This is why it matters to do a bit of research about where your civet coffee is sourced.
What kind of coffee beans are the Civets fed?
Wondering what coffee beans are fed to the civets? Most civet coffee producers use coffee beans from their own plantations which can be either Arabica or Robusta, but mostly Arabica. Since most civet coffee come from Vietnam and neighboring regions, Arabica from this part of the globe have rich, earthy flavors that work well with this particular coffee process.
Coffee plantations or gardens in Asia have fantastic irrigation and are extremely well-tended to ensure quality crops. The soil surrounding the trees are dug deeply to bank water. The fertilizers used are carefully chosen --NPK or nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium-- and are administered three times a year. They usually switch to green fertilizers after the October-December harvest season.
Why so expensive?
But wait, did you know this kind of coffee may cost much more than your most expensive coffee bean from Starbucks? One kilogram of this poop coffee costs up to $700. Yes, it may be expensive but the price is correlative to how it is produced as explained above.
Not only that, civet coffee is prized because of its combination of lower caffeine content and richer flavor. In other words, there’s no other more delicious cup of half caf than this.
Worth a try
Though drinking coffee from poop sounds more like a dare than anything else, the truth of the matter is it’s an adventure for the taste buds. So when you get the chance, go for it! After all, it’s not every day you can say you’ve drunk coffee from a cat.