We've just witnessed the lifecycle of coffee, from tree, to bean, harvesting, drying, washing, roasting, brewing, to adding the milk and sugar (if desired), to of course... drinking.
Here in the Bolaven Highlands of Laos, the city of Paksong, almost every residence has some coffee beans drying on a tarp in front of their home. Our guide on the trek, T'hao, owns a nice coffee garden with mostly Robusta plants but a few Arabica and Liberica thrown in for fun. When harvesters come from the surrounding areas, they camp here for one-two months while harvesting, and fish/hunt/gather for food. They get paid around US$40/month. Pulling only the red beans (leaving the green for next month) they go from tree to tree and either pull down the top branches with rope or use a ladder.
The beans must be dried around 3-4 weeks if left in the fruit, or 1-2 weeks if not (washed). Probably a better flavor when dried in the fruit, but who has the time?
Major coffee companies then purchase these dried beans for roasting. Lucky for us, a Dutch expat here named 'Mr. Koffi' runs a small shop offering fresh coffee tastings and a Wok Roasting workshop...
So we learned how to roast the coffee beans in a wok on a propane stove (takes about 20 minutes). After tasting the results, we must say the coffee is quite good, very smooth, not needing milk nor sugar.
We'll bring back some roasted beans so you all can taste!
Pakse and a Ride Down the Mekong
Crossing through Laos into Vietnam, we were able to eke out a great few days! << old website quick post >>
Hitchhiking at My Age?
I was grateful to have a travel buddy at ease with hitching since it's not something I would have done on my own.
Big Ben kids, Parliament
What the heck, I'll just go ahead and order the over priced American breakfast. It really did hit the spot, right down to the white bread and cheese s ....
How to Find Work Abroad While you Travel
A Fun-Filled 1 Week Costa Rica Itinerary
At-Home COVID Test for International Travel - Returning to the US
Apr 24, 2022 My Travel Life Takes Another Hit
Mar 7, 2022 My First Trip Since Having COVID
Feb 17, 2022 Costa Rica My First At-Home COVID Test
Aug 27, 2021 United States What a Year to Start Traveling Full Time
Jul 30, 2020 Unplugging (Sort of) for a Week
Jul 13, 2020 Feeling Cranky and Displaced
Jul 10, 2020 Costa Rica Poker Night in a Small Town
Jun 5, 2020 Costa Rica Almonds Keep Falling on My Head
Jun 4, 2020 Costa Rica Visiting the Chiropractor on Lobster Island
Jun 3, 2020 Costa Rica