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Aug 14, 2007 07:47 PM

Kopi Luwak coffee in GTA ?

Is there anywhere in Toronto has this kind of coffee ? Thanks.

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  1. I saw it at Pusaturi on Avenue & Lawrence couple months ago. Pls call to confirm.

    10 Replies
    1. re: ace123

      Is this the coffee made from beans dug out of the s**t of civet cats?

      1. re: ekammin

        Yes, it is... I wonder what the current selling price is...

        1. re: sumashi

          Pusateri's is selling it for $120/4oz.

          1. re: ace123

            Thanks ! Looks like it is the only place carries it in Toronto.

            1. re: skylineR33

              Thanks for asking this!. I've been jamleromg to try this coffee one more time!

              1. re: kerwintoronto

                One more time? hehe...
                So, is it really THAT good? :)

                1. re: sumashi

                  To be honest...not really. I tried it twice in the IC hotel in Hong Kong in the lobby bar...good food services or at least drink. It was good but I didn't think it was worth the US$50 a cup (or something like that).

                  It was good (yada, yada, yada) but nothing I would prefer over a nice Kona Peaberry or Blue Mountain.

                  But in all things food you can never trust just one preparation or tasting. So I'd like to give the hype on more chance...I suspect it is just a case of scarcity.

                2. re: kerwintoronto

                  You can get a really high quality kopi luwak from I tried it at a trade show before and it's definitely real. They ship.

          2. re: ekammin

            A scientist did a bacteria count on the coffee beans and found it had less than regular coffee. Go figure.

            1. re: merlot143

              maybe because they wash it knowing where it comes from? as opposed to regular coffee which merely tastes like s**t.

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            1. The original comment has been removed
              1. Somewhat of an older thread but I saw kopi luwak small pack for 44$ at Longos near ACC. Its good for 6-8 cups from what I was told. A good way to sample this delicacy if you ask me so I wanted to share it with the fellow java luvers

                22 Replies
                1. re: elvisahmed

                  This price appears too low to be genuine. I was in Bali last summer and there were luwak coffee for sale ranging from $40 to $500/lb. As you can imagine, it is impossible to tell what is fake. I had a cup of kopi luwak at a coffee farm there for $15 and it was nothing impressive but then I could have been given fake or heavily diluted luwak as well.

                  I believe kopi luwak goes for more than $200/lb, so the one in Longos is very suspect.

                  1. re: 1moreround

                    I guess I can find out once I have had a chance to try it out next week.
                    This one is not cheap by any means 44$ for 6 cups worth of beans. I will see how much it works out to be per lb when I buy it.
                    Though I would expect Longos to sell genuine stuff with the prices they charge. I found it interesting to share as I haven't seen people sell a small quantity in Toronto.

                    1. re: elvisahmed

                      Hmmm is it really that good that its worth paying what it seems like might be $180/lb since you said $44 for enough beans to make 6-8 cups? That's more than ten times the prIce of premium roasted beans.

                      I'd also wonder when the beans were roasted as coffee is at peak only within 5 days of roasting (whether sealed or not) and for the price of those beans I'd want to know they were just roasted. Not sure I'd enjoy them as I'd keep thinking of the journey they took though those birds.

                      Where else have you seen them in Toronto?

                      1. re: Flexitarian

                        Pustaeri and green beenery has kopi luwak.
                        I am sure I won't be able to appreciate the astronomical up charge but I want to try it just for the sake of it as I am an espresso drinker.
                        If you haven't visit the Longos at ACC their coffee stand is quite impressive and I have had good espresso beans from there (though the 49th parallel roast is still the tops for me for espresso beans bar none!)

                        1. re: Flexitarian

                          I looked into to buying some of this coffee from a person returning from Indonesia. When I talked to coffee experts, I declined, because there are natural and caged supplies of the beans, and bogus beans as well. By caged, I mean there is a small industry in Indonesia, feeding civets coffee berries and selling the beans at $160/lb.

                          It is difficult to know what Longo's is offering, and what price per lb.

                          1. re: jayt90

                            What is the difference between the civets being fed the beans in cages and just happening to come across them? In both cases the birds do the swallowing, minimal dIgesting and elIminating.

                            1. re: Flexitarian

                              It would be like the difference between farmed salmon and wild salmon, except that gathering beans from wild civets is difficult and time consuming.

                              1. re: Flexitarian

                                Part of the mythology is supposedly that wild civets are choosy about which berries they will eat off of the plant, and pick the best ones. Nobody seems to know if the perceived difference is merely due to the digestive process, or to this selectivity, or both. So if people are willing to spend large amounts of money for cat crap, some of those people are likely going to be willing to spend even more for WILD cat crap.

                                1. re: Wahooty

                                  Hmmmm. I guess that would be something to chirp about if there was that much variation in green beans from a certain crop but I don't think that's the case.

                                2. re: Flexitarian

                                  Hi Flexitarian,
                                  The difference between the wild and the caged one is not much. However, for mass production and consistency of volume the caged one definitely better. The cost to maintain luwak for their food and the manpower costs US$130/month. The food cycle is very important, as it will maintain their enzymes at maximum for a better digestion system. The more enzyme in their stomach, the better coffee they make. The enzyme breaks down the protein that makes the beans are extremely different from regular beans. it turned the coffee to a low caffeine, low acid, not bitter, very smooth, full body, long aftertaste, floral and sweet aroma. So different from regular coffee.

                                3. re: jayt90

                                  Well I finally got the beans today and it works out to be about 250$/lb as it is 44$ for 80 Grams so its by no means on the lower end. I actually enjoyed the chat with the sales person at the Coffee Island in the store. I have never brewed Kopi at home or tried it so asked her to give me instructions on how to brew it. I do have a burr grinder at home so she recommended I grind them fresh. She actually pulled out an instructions manual that is provided by the place they buy their beans from. She spent quite a bit of time explaining the two methods she recommends as I don't have access to the vacuum system famously shown in "The Bucket List". BTW she confirmed their beans are roasted in house and fresh. Will Report back after I have tried it.

                                  1. re: elvisahmed

                                    Thanks. Please let us know.

                                    But, I am wondering, she may have said they are roasted in house and fresh, but given the cost of these and given that freshly roasted beans are at their best in the first 5 days do they actually throw them out then if no one buys the before their best before date? I would find that hard to believe at this price that they would do that and also that there is much turnover roasted beans at $250/lb . Also, it's pretty easy to determine if they are roasting them in house, but how does one determine they were actually freshly roasted at the time of purchase? At this price I'd sure want to know!

                                    1. re: Flexitarian

                                      Well the lady has requested that I share my experience with her as well.
                                      They don't have much of this stuff available for sale anyway I have never seen more than two small packs at a time. I am sure they don't roast em everyday and 2 pack loss a week for a huge store like Longo's wouldn't matter as I am assuming this more of a showcase item than being a cash cow.
                                      Time will tell whether it was worth it.

                                      1. re: Flexitarian

                                        Well folks I finally had Kopi Luwak today. Beans don't stand out much from other one's in appearance. The aroma is quite nice actually.
                                        We did it in 3 methods. French press and Stove top espresso as per the recommendation of the sales person at Longos. Beans were ground fresh with a burr grinder. I used a thermometer to get a good read of the water temperature.
                                        1) With Distilled Water in a French press (coarse grind)
                                        2) Filtered fresh water in a French Press (coarse grind)
                                        3) Stove top with fresh filtered water (espresso grind)
                                        4) Since I had some left over I also did a double espresso shot from my espresso machine and I use distilled water in it.
                                        Well the 1st cup was the one we anticipated the most as we could feel the clock ticking. I used the normal amount of coffee that I use for my French press which has a 2 cup capacity. The color was light almost see through (more like a tea) than of coffee.
                                        1) Initial impression very mellow taste and no bitterness at all. Taste was nothing to write home about and it didn't appeal to me as I am more of an espresso drinker. I sipped and sipped and I could get some notes of berries but that just about it. Way too mellow for my taste only stand out that there was absolutely no bitterness. My drinking mates were also perplexed and one of them is a coffee drinker.
                                        2) On to the next Serving wanting to get a stronger taste I put an extra spoon of coffee beans than I normally use. Sure the color was darker in this serving but no increase in strength. Hmm left me at a loss for words. More notes of berries
                                        We wanted to clean our palettes so in addition to drinking some water we had neutral tasting cheese cake. Followed by some soda with lemon and some water.
                                        3) We waited a good hour before trying the next serving. I used a fine grind and kept a close eye on the stove top espresso maker as I didn't it to scald. Very mellow taste again no bitterness and hardly any acidic feeling one gets drinking black coffee.
                                        4) I had enough ground beans left to make a double shot so I said what the heck why not. After pouring the machine warming shot I loaded up a shot with ground beans in the porta filter, poured a double shot. To my surprise there was hardly any crema' I could see some of it on the sides but nothing on the top (I have a half decent espresso machine at home and despite its limitations I can get a reasonable shot with crema on it with other beans)
                                        Taste wasn't any different from the last three servings which threw me off again I mean even some teas have more bite than this.
                                        After a few hours I can safely say I know I have had 3 cups of coffee but I don't feel the coffee after taste in my stomach.
                                        Would I do it again probably not as a novelty item was it worth it sure (but I was splitting it with 2 other people so 15$ per person is not a big loss) at least I can say I have tried it.
                                        There you have it folks to each his own if you ask me if I had no reference point for coffee and this is the first time I ever had coffee in my life I would appreciate it more maybe, since I am a coffee drinker now I don’t see a point of paying such a premium on a regular basis.

                                        1. re: elvisahmed

                                          Thanks for posting that elvis. I've always wondered about this coffee and the reviews certainly have been mixed from what I've seen around the net. I guess, in the end (no pun intended) I wonder how much this bean being passed through a civet cat could really change the bean itself. I have found that once I am paying $5-10 for a pound of green beans, the roasting profile and length of time, water and brewing method impact the taste of the coffee more than anything else.

                                          1. re: Flexitarian

                                            You are welcome Flexitarian. It is unique I can tell you. I have never had anything like it I hardly have 2 cups of coffee in a day as I feel it the whole day afterwards. This one I have no after taste and now with 5-6 hours have passed I don't even feel like I had coffee (while my caffeine fix is not there). There isn't much taste to write home about. If you can pool some people try it out for sure but would I pay 20$+ at a cafe to have it no way.

                                            1. re: elvisahmed

                                              Thank you for the write-up elvisahmed. As I mentioned, I also had a cup of kopi luwark in Bali at a coffee distribution place. They actually had a civet cat in a cage there. The whole thing actually gave me a bad feeling of "tourist trap", but anyhow, I felt the same about their kopi luwark - nothing special.

                                              I'd want to try luwark again if I can find a source of coffee I can trust. I keep thinking all the meh experiences have to do with questionable source of coffee.

                                          2. re: elvisahmed

                                            Thank you for the full review/write-up.

                                            It's been ages since my experience of this coffee. My experience was similar but less eloquent in the telling.

                                            May splurge and try it one more time.


                                            1. re: kerwintoronto

                                              Thanks for your kind words. So I am not alone on the tasting notes here as the next sales pitch has been that I should have tried it with a siphon/vacuum method as supposedly it would have made a world of difference (I highly doubt it). While it is unique and if one can try it at this price by all means give it a try as maybe some folks would appreciate it more than I did but to drink it on a regular basis is not something I would recommend.

                                4. re: 1moreround

                                  Hi 1moreround. Coffee bean from Bali is mediocre. They are not as good as beans from Gayo, Mandheling or Toraja. Gayo is the best, and Dutch people set it as the highest standard since Indonesia being colonized hundred years ago. So Kopi Luwak should be cheaper than that. They place high price due to it's a very touristy place. They can make up price as much as they want with a very nice gift package/box. The package looks nice, but the coffee is not that special.

                                  1. re: 1moreround

                                    I've actually tried several cups of kopi luwak now in Jakarta, Medan, Surabaya, Bali and a few other towns in between and I feel like I can really tell the difference when they are not real. I was recently in Indonesia and did a kopi luwak self-guided tour. Kopi luwak in Bali is a dime a dozen because many of them are fake. They can charge less because either they are blended with regular coffee, or they are using the cheaper and lower quality coffee (Robusta not Arabica) or I've even seen ones where they claim to use synthetic luwak, whatever that means. Often times they won't bring out the package to show you what they're brewing, they won't let you smell the beans or ground, some don't even show you when they are brewing, so how do you know what you're drinking? The higher end shops (check out Cafe Tator in Jakarta and Rollaas Cafe in Surabaya) that 'guarantee' the authenticity will do this. They will walk you through the whole process right in front of you so you can see the real thing. Beware though I've seen fake ones sold for the same as the real ones. It's hard to tell, you just have to ask questions and see how willing are they to dispose information. I usually try to judge their transparency level. And the other factor I learned is that the wild luwak quality is not as good as the ones that are farmed. But depending on how they care for the farmed luwaks, if they are being force-fed or crammed in cages and etc. then the quality is just as bad as the wild ones. The best quality kopi luwak is produced by the free-range farmed civets. Lastly, I wouldn't trust shops that sell kopi luwak for less than $15 a cup.

                                    1. re: thewanderingfoodie

                                      I agree with Tator and Rollaas Cafe and caged luwak is better. They both are big players and always committed to serve real luwak ad caged luwak is a good way to control the food cycle for the animals. But they are expensive. I know there are some others small player but using real luwak beans.