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Dec 3, 2008 08:50 AM

Kopi Luwak...where to get it?

Hi from a newbie,

I've finally worked myself up to trying kopi luwak (that's the coffee made from beans picked out of cat poop), but there's no way I'm buying half a pound of the stuff for $40. Anywhere in the DC metro area where one can buy this stuff by the cup?

A few places in CA and NYC serve it. So we can't be far behind.

Full disclosure: I'm a journalist who may eventually use this info in a story. But I am honestly curious about drinking a cup or shot myself, even if just to say I did it.

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  1. Answering my own question--Zeke's Coffee in Baltimore is holding a tasting in January. $10 a cup! Yeah, the per-cup markup is huge, but that's a pretty low barrier to entry. I'm thinking about it.

    1 Reply
    1. re: rkaufman

      sounds like you woulda had a recipe all along...

      and a companion.

      we had a cat that liked green beans on occasion, I can't imagine a cat eating coffee beans, unless really really hungry.

      I actually had this once in Salt Lake City of all places, you may be surprised.

      I was offered yak butter and it made it very different. better? who can say.

    2. I've never tried the Luwak, but I've read some entertaining and informative opinions of it at Go to the site and read about their preferred alternative that journeys through the GI tracts of birds instead of cats, "Brazil Jacu Bird Coffee."

      1. As they say on the internets: bump!

        No seriously, does anyone know of a place in the DC area? Zeke's had a tasting in early January, but I don't see anything upcoming and Baltimore isn't that convenient for me.

        As to not waste precious bytes, I'd like to point out that my current coffee obsession developed over the Snowpocalypse - Bocato Gelato in Clarendon ( on Clarendon Blvd, across from the Whole Foods ) has orgasmically good french-pressed coffee ( espresso too ). It's worth going out of my way ( to me ).

        3 Replies
        1. re: plataoplomo

          Satay Sarinah, an Indonesian restaurant in the south of Alexandria has it on their menu online for $10 a cup. Intriguingly, they also have some Filipino dishes on that menu (hard to find in these parts!). I'll have to head down there this coming week to confirm!

          1. re: joeschmoe199

            Couldn't wait that long—had to go today! They most certainly have kopi luwak, it is available every day, and the restaurant itself was wonderful. Friendly service, virtually all Indonesian clinetele, and really great, authentic Indonesian food. In addition to the wildcat poop coffee, I had the lumpiah, fried whole spicy coconut fish, and es campur for dessert (shaved ice with a fruity syrup, topped with all manner of fruit, coconut, jackfruit, black jelly, pineapple, and some other things I didn't immediately recognize. Alas, they were out of the chocolate avocado smoothies.

            The coffee was a bit nutty and quite smooth—not at all bitter, but not particularly memorable compared to the sort of complex brews I'm used to at, say, Baked & Wired in Georgetown. The novelty and bragging rights were worth the $10, though. Speaking of Georgetown, the restaurant claims to have originally been located there, and they tell me that they operate a food truck in D.C., but that it does not cart around kopi luwak!

            1. re: joeschmoe199

              A civet is not a cat!


              I once got to enjoy the smell of the hindquarters of a civet (different species) at the Peabody Museum at Yale, which despite its tiny size turns out to be much more interesting than either the Smithsonian or the American Museum of NH. They have an exhibit where you can sniff the base scents of the classical perfumes. A random bbs posting by "BlammO" memorably reports:

              "The Peabody Museum at Yale has an interesting display on animal-based scents. There are basically four sources -- ambergris from whale shit/vomit, civet from the skunk-like anal pouch of the civet cat, musk from the tarsal glands of the musk deer and castoreum from beaver asses. So basically, a lot of the high-dollar perfumes your ladies may wear come from obscene parts of filthy, disgusting creatures."

              Sadly the museum's website makes no mention of this that i can find.

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