Author(s): M. Weissman
This book takes a fascinating inside look at the high-stakes world of specialty coffee.
In 2007, La Esmeralda Special, a crop of Geisha-variety coffee beans from the hills of western Panama, set an auction record when it sold for $130 a pound wholesale. What made this coffee so special? And just who were the bidders who drove the price so high, who "saw God" in a cup of joe?
Journalist Michaele Weissman decided to find out. Tagging along with coffee buyers from two of the country's most renowned specialty roasters, she embarked on an odyssey that would take her all the way to Ethiopia, the birthplace of coffee, and deep inside today's coffee-geek culture. Along the way, she attends a coffee cupping competition in Nicaragua, where judges detect flavors like tobacco and blueberry as they sniff, slurp, and spit. She visits remote coffee plantations and describes how direct coffee-buying deals are helping growers improve their lives. And she introduces us to a celebrity barista who scoffs at Starbucks and serves $12 lattes.
"Weissman travels from the exotic to the expected to artfully deconstruct the connoisseur's cup of coffee." (Publishers Weekly, March 31, 2008)
Michaele Weissman is a journalist and author who writes about food, families, business, and American culture. Her work appears frequently in publications such as the New York Times, the Washington Post, and the Wall Street Journal. Her coffee blog can be found at michaeleweissmanwrites.com/godinacupofcoffee. She lives in Chevy Chase, Maryland, with her husband.
Acknowledgements.Prologue.The Coffee Guys.God in a Cup.Granada, Nicaragua.Rwanda, Burundi, Ethiopia.Panama.Portland, Oregon.Los Angeles.Durham, North Carolina.Epilogue.Background.The Coffee Chain Explained.Coffee Producers of the World.Making Great Coffee at Home.Bibliography.Index.