Friday, March 7, 2008

an introduction

getting under the skin of the coffee world. 

caffe vita has been sourcing and roasting remarkable coffee in seattle washington for thirteen years. one year ago vita decided to revolutionize the way they buy coffee and instead of buying via importers, distributers, exporters, coyotes, and other middlemen - vita made a pledge to begin buying as much coffee as possible directly from specific farms around the globe. the result: farm direct coffee for their cafes and the hundreds of acclaimed restaurants, hotels, and coffee houses that serve vita. 

under the skin? 

this is where i come in - i started a little project called ONE POT (long story) and have spent the past ten years creating guerilla dining events and ill-fated mini-restaurant-empires (longer story) and along the way have used the table to provoke as much conversation and heated opinion as possible. and now i am using that knack in this collaboration with vita. 

wtf? i travel with vita on all of their sourcing trips (ethiopia, brazil, guatemala, sulawesi) and do my best to find out what the hell is going on in these often war torn pockets of the world. if you follow the coffee world you know that coffee is immensely political, often violent, and millions of lives hang in the balance. the bean can be poetic, harsh, painfully discouraging, and often inspiring (bordering on spiritual for some), but more than anything it seems to be a world of hushed secrets and deep veils. those that buy the majority of the worlds production prefer to keep the stories behind coffee (the second most traded commodity on the planet) in dim shadow. this blog - and the writings and videos and dinners i am pushing into the world are meant to shine a bit of light. 

please comment and be in touch - i am new to the blog world and just beginning to follow other posts - i would love to hear about others doing similar work in this field. 

2 comments:

Restaurant Girl said...

coffee is the new "it" accessory for the slow foodie; it's gone from being a necessary crack to being a tool of eco-awareness...thanks to people who are doing work like you. Commendable stuff you guys have going on here. I'm glad you have ongoing documentary of what you're doing in the world.

Shirley said...

I'm sort of in awe of your constant energy--great work, sir. Good to see you a few weeks ago; still looking for some time to stop by the Fry!

Much love! S-