THE ESSENCE OF COFFEE. SCAA Trainer’s Guide to Specialty Coffee Myth, History, Cultivation through Export. COFFEE BASICS:. The Myth and History of Specialty Coffee Myth History Migration from East to West Spread of the Coffee House In Europe In America. Myth.
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THE ESSENCE OF COFFEE SCAA Trainer’s Guide to Specialty Coffee Myth, History, Cultivation through Export
COFFEE BASICS: • The Myth and History of Specialty Coffee • Myth • History • Migration from East to West • Spread of the Coffee House • In Europe • In America
Myth • The story of coffeeis steeped in Myth,intrigue, adventure,and peril. • This story begins in myth. The first of these concerns an Abyssinian (Ethiopian) goat herder named Kaldi.
Kaldi noticed his goats dancing and prancing after they ate a strange red berry. • Not to be left out of the fun, Kaldi too ate the berry and soon was dancing with his herd. • A wandering Abbot saw Kaldi and asked the goat herder about this strange exuberance of man and beast.
Believing that these berries might help his fellow monks remain awake during prayers, the Abbott returned to his group with berries in hand.
Yet another myth concerns the dervish, Omar. Legend has it that Omar was exiled by his enemies and condemned to die of starvation in the Yemenite desert. • One night he was awakened by a strange apparition that led him to a coffee tree. • Omar gathered the tree’s berries, boiled them, and when he could not eat the seeds, he drank the resulting brew.
Filled with a new vitality, Omar offered this strange beverage to some sick people that he encountered. • Their recovery compelled Omar to return to the Port of Mocha, in Yemen, with these magical berries. • Due to their restorative powers, coffee berries became regarded as a gift from God.
Other legends have tied coffee to such figures as Helen of Troy who may have brought it from Sparta to Troy as the “wondrous drink” of which Homer writes.
History • Botanists believe that coffee originated in Ethiopia and it is from here that coffee began its spread throughout the world.
As illustrated in some of the myths and legends, coffee’s use began as a food rather than as a beverage. • It is thought that African tribes would crush the ripe coffee berries and mix this fruit with animal fat to prepare a potent and invigorating food. • They would eat this mixture for nourishment and to arouse aggression in preparation for war.
The first coffee beverage was like a wine. The juice from fermented coffee berries was mixed with cold water to make an enticing beverage. • It was not until the Arabs began to boil the raw coffee beans (or seeds) that coffee became a hot drink.
While it is generally believed that coffee originated in Ethiopia, coffee was first cultivated in monastery gardens in neighboring Arabia (Yemen) at least 1000 years ago. • It is believed that Arab traders first brought coffee out of Ethiopia across the Gulf of Aden and into Yemen through the port of Mocha. • So much coffee was shipped through this port that “Mocha” became synonymous with coffee.
Like the Africans, the Arabians first made wine from the pulp of the fermented coffee berries. • “Qahwah” (Ka-wa), the Arabic word for wine was first used to describe coffee. • Since wine was forbidden by Islamic law, coffee was used to replace it.
Offered primarily in religious ceremonies and as a stimulant prescribed by doctors, coffee soon became popular and achieved wider use. • In order to meet growing demand, the Arabs developed a system of cultivation whereby seedling coffee plants were grown in nurseries.
When the plants were mature and sturdy enough, they were transplanted to the foothills where irrigation systems watered them and shade poplars kept them protected from the sun.
The popularization of coffee produced advancements in preparation. • While the fruit of the coffee berry had provided the first beverage, soon the coffee beans were being roasted and boiled to create a new, yellowish drink.
In about the 13th century, the next development arose in Turkey. • The roasted coffee bean as pulverized into powder which was then mixed with water, sugar, spices (such as cinnamon, cardamom, and cloves), and then boiled. • The result, which we call Turkish coffee, was a condensed brew that could be re-heated, served in tiny, potent portions and consumed as desired.
The invention of the Ibrik (an hourglass shaped boiling pot) speeded up the preparation process.
As coffee became more popular and began to lose its solely medicinal and religious connections, the first coffee houses opened in Mecca. • These coffee houses (or “qahveh khaneh” as they were called) provided a place for people to gather socially in order to gamble, listen to music, discuss religious and political issues, and to drink coffee.
The coffee houses, which would later spring up around the West, were fashioned after the original ones in Mecca, Constantinople, and Damascus.
Although religious and political leaders of the time found coffee houses somewhat threatening, their efforts to close them failed. • Coffee was too popular and was the lesser of other evils—such as wine.
Coffee soon ventured from the coffee houses to the home where it was often celebrated through lavish ceremonies much like the tea ceremonies of Japan.
Migration from East to West • The journey of coffee to the rest of the world is full of theft and intrigue. • The Arabs so valued their coffee trade that they prohibited coffee’s removal from the country in its fertile form. Indeed, removal was punishable by death.
However, with coffee’s popularity, its spread was inevitable. Middle Eastern migration
It is believed that religious pilgrims that journeyed to Mecca may have smuggled the first coffee to other Middle Eastern countries such as Egypt, Syria, and Turkey. • Venetian traders may have been the first to carry the precious cargo out of the East and into Italy providing coffee with its first leap to Europe.
Denounced as an evil beverage of the Muslim infidels, Italian priests declared coffee to be the work of the Devil. • They wanted it to be banned so as to prevent those who drank it from falling into eternal damnation.
Near the end of the 16th century, Pope Clement VIII (8th) asked that this evil brew be brought to him. • He was so enthralled by the drink that he refused to ban it thus sanctioning coffee’s continued spread throughout the Christian world.
Although many countries including France, Italy, and Germany were competing to introduce the profitable coffee crop to their various colonies, it was Holland that first succeeded in this effort.
In 1616, the Dutch smuggled a coffee plant out of Yemen and by 1658 had begun cultivation in the colonies of Ceylon and Java.
Soon Amsterdam became a trading center for coffee grown in the Dutch colonies. • Coffee cultivation in the colonies was so successful that “Java” became a synonym for all coffee.
After several efforts to transport the coffee plant to France, success was achieved in 1714 when a plant was sent from Amsterdam to King Louis XIV (14th). • This coffee plant was transplanted into the King’s Garden (The Jardin des Plantes) in Paris.
From this single plant, most of the coffee plants grown in the French colonies, South and Central America, and the Caribbean were born. • The theft of one of the seedlings from this coffee plant offers one of the most romantic of intrigues concerning coffee’s migration.
It involvesa youngFrenchnaval officerserving inthe colony of MartiniquenamedGabriel Mathieu de Clieu.
Having heard of the great success of the coffee plant in Java de Clieu believed that he could bring great fortune and prominence to France by cultivating the plant in the West Indies. • When in Paris, de Clieu asked the royal botanist for a seedling. The botanist had great success and had earned tremendous prestige for himself in the 10 years that he had cultivated the plant in the King’s garden.
Indeed the nobility often traveled to look at the wonderful hothouse coffee plant and, no doubt, praised the botanist’s efforts. Not wanting to lose any of this prestige, the botanist refused to allow any plants out of the garden. • de Clieu would not be dissuaded. So, with the aid of a doctor, de Clieu was able to collect a gang of masked men to storm the garden walls and to successfully steal a seedling from the garden.
Encased in a glass sided wooden frame; the plant was carefully tended by de Clieu on the long sea voyage. • Although the voyage was plagued by pirates and storms, de Clieu maintained his protective watch.
Indeed, when water became scarce and the sea captain refused the coffee plant a ration, de Clieu shared his own precious water with the plant. • de Clieu’s efforts succeeded and the coffee plant arrived to Martinique healthy and flourishing. • Planted, surrounded by thorns, and then guarded by slaves, this plant thrived.
It is believed that within the next 50 years, there were nearly 19 million coffee plants on Martinique. • From Martinique, plants were taken to Haiti, Santo Domingo, and Guadeloupe.
As mentioned earlier, the Dutch took coffee to Java. In turn, they brought coffee with them from Java to Dutch Guyana (Surinam) in South America in 1718. Migration to South America and surrounding islands
At this time, the French too were growing coffee in neighboring French Guyana. • When a border dispute erupted, a Brazilian named Francisco de Melo Palheta (Pie-yeah-ta) was called in to arbitrate.
As a reward, Palheta received a bag of coffee seeds and several seedlings from the French governor’s wife. Thus the Brazilian coffee industry was born. • By the end of the 18th century, coffee had become a highly profitable export crop for Brazil.
Coffee’s further expansion into what are now its growing regions proceeded in this manner of colonization.
The British first took coffee to Jamaica around 1730. • Guatemala received her first taste of the coffee crop between 1750 and 1760. • It is believed that Don Francisco Xavier Navarro delivered coffee plants from Cuba to Costa Rica around 1779. • And that Mexico first acquired the coffee plant in about 1790. • In 1825 Hawaii received her precious cargo of seeds from a plantation in Rio de Janeiro.
A small island colony in the southwest Indian Ocean played a large role in supporting coffee’s migration around the world. • This French colony called Bourbon, now called Reunion, offered the perfect conditions for cultivating seedlings from King Louis’s garden.
In fact, cultivation became so important that in 1723 the colonial government decreed that every plantation was required to grow an additional two hundred coffee trees and that anyone who destroyed a coffee plant would be punished by death!
When sugar can became the islands’ preferred crop after islands’ preferred crop after 1825, Bourbon coffee seedlings found their way to South and Central American countries. • These seedlings gave rise to a strain of arabica coffee known as Bourbon.
Missionaries took this Bourbon strain to countries such as Brazil, Colombia, Peru, El Salvador, Mexico, and Kenya. • This global migration of coffee returned to Africa in 1878 with the introduction of coffee to British East Africa by British settlers. • By 1900, these settlers had commingled their crops with that Bourbon coffee strain originating from King Louis XIV’s (14th) garden.
Coffee had found its way back home! Coffee around the world