Indonesia is (sorry Thailand!) the real land of smiles! Out of any situation a smile is most likely the end result. Coffee farmers here have historially had little to smile about. The Dutch Colonialists had a form of Plantation Economics which made Java Coffee famous, but made the crop dispised by the local small-holders. The Colonial forced production systems ended in the 1880's but until relatively recently coffee was not a favorite crop of the locals. Specialty coffee, not low grade robusta, is the future for this country of 17,000 islands. I hope the smiles are because of the countrys success in getting unique coffee to roasters and Barista all over the world. I would like to think Merdeka Coffee is playing a small part in achieving this. Merdeka!!
The roaster I am using in Manila is a 5kg Has Garanti. First time I have roasted on one- usually Probat, Toper and a Diedrich way back in Auckland in my early days. Still waiting my own greens here so had a dry run to check airflow and the exhaust flue setup using local greens. The roaster had been new into storage 2017- so I also had to rewire the ignition system- no sweat. Also required some work on the gas system- checking it thoroughly before firing it up.…Continue
I am sitting outside now...the sky is a light, duck egg blue. Sitting under the fig tree where so often I pass the time between the busy lunch and hectic evening rushes. We are on a hill here...the street runs up and down to the Mesjid (Surau) at the bottom. At this time of night many people are beginning to walk home from work. Many in suits and ties. Others are coming out for the evening. For us its still not busy...but for sure on a Friday night it will become busy. Bangsar is a nicely…Continue
When Karl casually told me that he reckoned it was a good idea to open Antipodean in the flash, upmarket suburb of Bangsar (KL, Malaysia), I didnt know whether to laugh or cry. Malaysia, unlike Indonesia, has a very developed level of food appreciation- from eating the variety of delicacies on offer- to critiquing them via live blogs and other web media. In all honesty Merdeka Coffee has its hands fairly full with Indonesia, the cafe in Sydney, the roastery in Auckland and some plans for…Continue