I have just recently gotten back from a week and a half tour of Taiwan and a brief stop in Tokyo, Japan. It will take me a little while to collect my thoughts and organize my photos but there is a lot to discuss. Tea farms, equipment manufacturers, and a drop in with Hario Japan that all will be discussed in the next few weeks.
First off, it's worth noting something that came as a shock to us. Just after visiting with Simon Hsieh in Taipei, we discovered Simon scored two very high scores on coffeereview to take the top two spots in a ranking of 2009 best sellers. I want to say congratulations to Simon and I hope he gets worthy notice for his roasting skills and ability. As a student of his in roasting and brewing methods, I can only wish him well.
Strangely enough, we finished 4th in the same poll rather unexpectedly. The request for coffees to be reviewed was for best sellers of 2009, not the sexy premium lots but the ones that have performed well in sales. I believe at the time we sent the coffees, we were nearly out of our Costa Rica Helsar de Zarcero and just discontinued our Kenya Kiandu in drip so our lineup was slim.
The Koke scored a 94pt review which we'll happily accept. We only roast this coffee as an espresso as it is very popular in our cafe accounts and is a component of more than one of the Sonata series espresso blends. Since we only roast it as espresso, we took a risk that it would not fare well on the cupping table but we came out fine.
Simon and I only had a short time to exchange coffees, catch up, and brew some Syphon before we had to keep on schedule but it was good seeing him again.