So you faintly remember this: Almost a year ago, a Portland-area man posted an ad on Craigslist offering to eat, digest and defecate coffee beans into Lincoln Log form, then clean and roast them into human-made kopi luwak coffee, which when made from the feces of civets is the most expensive form of coffee in the world. Goldman's brew was a comparative bargain at a mere $30 a pound.
WW e-mailed with the man—who went under the name Randy Goldman on Yahoo—last December, and he was eerily specific about his process, enough to make us unsure whether he was serious. He wrote, in part, "I eat the cherries and then digest them. The seeds are left in tact when they pass. I carefully sort through it, wash them thoroughly, dry them in my Excelsior dehydrator (on the lowest setting) until they reach 14% moisture."
Still, it looked like a brilliant prank of the Letters to Wendy's variety, a raised middle finger in the Vatican-holy temple of locavore purism.
Well, paint me surprised and feed me hot crap: Llewellyn Sinclair of the Sprudge coffee blog, after a 9-month correspondence, finally found "Goldman" on his 10-acre spread in Estacada and drank his poopy coffee. And he gave it a wavering thumbs-sideways.
Sinclair brought Goldman a vacuum-sealed bag of high-quality cherries, and while he did not watch Goldman during the first, disgusting phase of the process, he did watch the roasting of the results: "What should have been emerald green coffee beans were instead a sickly yellow color now, and we watched as Randy carefully placed the coffee in his HotTop Roaster and started to roast."
The results? Eh. It was " and. As it cooled, it yielded that teetered perilously on the brink of being unbalanced." Sinclair rated it an 82/100, as compared to a 94 for the same beans roasted by a pro, in the usual fashion.
In explanation of his endeavor, Goldman offered a stirring defense of the American way: “I want to focus on quality as much as yield and all that, . I’m just an enterprising man trying to make an honest living.”
Anyway, he'll be roasting a new batch, and has a waiting list forty-strong. Now keep in mind there are potential hazards associated with ingesting any human byproduct, which made London authorities nervous enough to seize ice cream made from human breast milk. Never mind that coffee roasting temperatures will fry the living... crud... out of most bacteria. Still, caveat emptor.
Click here for the full Sprudge article.