BEST COFFEE MADE FROM MONKEY POO; CRAPPUCCINO
Wed Nov 21 2001 10:22:30 ET
Coffee drinkers are going bananas over a brew that's made of
Brits are flooding exclusive US stockists with orders for the brew, called
Kopi Luwak, made from berries that have passed through the digestive
system of Indonesian monkeys. Unlucky coffee plantation staff have to
search through the dung to gather the bizarre "harvest" of coffee berries,
which are said to emerge virtually intact.
Experts reckon the monkey business gives the drink a unique "earthy"
taste, which has made it the most expensive and sought-after coffee in the
It is in such short supply - just 500 lb of it is harvested a year - that
it is virtually impossible to get hold of in Britain and has only limited
availability in the States and Japan.
Experts say the brew first came to light hundreds of years ago, when
explorers sampled it on the Indonesian isles of Java, Sumatra and
The monkey - known as the Palm Toddy Cat - lives on a diet of alcoholic
tree sap and coffee berries.
US-based food and drink critic Chris Rubin said:
"Whether it's because the intestinal juices give some special flavour or
because it eats only perfectly ripe berries, the Toddy Cat's droppings
produce what many say is the world's finest coffee."
Some exclusive US outlets sell Kopi Luwak for around a FIVER a cup.
US Coffee supplier Mark Mountanos has snapped up 110 lb of the beans.
He said: "We've had interest from all over the world because it is very
hard to get hold of."
US coffee shop owner Richard Karno ordered a pound from Mark's firm - but
only after he convinced him it wasn't a joke.
He said: "It's the best coffee I've ever tasted. It smells musty, but it
roasts up real nice