The Finest Coffee in the World

Who would have thought cat-poo coffee would be this much trouble?  Like so many who snickered when Morgan Freeman’s character informed Edward Cole (played by Jack Nicholson) that Cole’s imported coffee is really cat-poo coffee, I was intrigued. When one of life’s surprises landed me in Bali, I quickly included a visit to a coffee plantation determined to savor the finest coffee in the world.

Sitting on stone benches in the middle of the coffee plantation, we sampled freshly roasted and ground coffee served in white porcelain cups. Granted I was determined to purchase these much sought after beans, but one sip sealed the deal. Kopi Luwak coffee is a rich, deliciously smooth elixir. I purchased 100 gr of Kopi Luwak beans for more Rupiahs than I could understand, but in American money, $62.71—to be exact.

Perhaps it was the mist lifting on the mountainside revealing the lush green terraces; perhaps it was Darma, our charming tour guide; no, it was the coffee—coffee good enough to risk going through customs; coffee good enough to pay about a zillion Rupiahs for a tiny package.

Trusting that since the beans were roasted and vacuumed packed, I could bring them through Australian customs, I declared my precious beans.  Well, not so fast.  Grinning, the customs officer picked up my package “You do know where this comes from, don’t you?  And it is pricey” he remarked as he scrutinized the tiny package, turning it over and over.   And then he walked away.  With my coffee!  My heart was racing.  With a lump in my throat, I felt as anxious as when the doctor took my first-born away for his check-up.  There I stood—arms outstretched, eyes transfixed on the closed door—waiting, waiting for the custom officer to return.  Rushing to his side, I clutched my cat-poo coffee to my breast.  Perhaps next time I won’t declare.


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