Java Good Time at the 1st Eastwood Coffee Con!

I had the opportunity to attend the opening of the very first Eastwood Coffee Con held at the Eastwood Mall Atrium last Wednesday. I love everything about coffee so I became really excited when I received the invite for this event. I didn’t want to miss it!

coffee con signage

cravings group at the coffee con

One of the more well-known establishments to offer their coffee courses was The Coffee Academy from Cravings. You may find their school along Katipunan Avenue in Quezon City. They offer the following courses:  ABC of Espresso Making, Advanced Espresso, Practice Sessions, Prepare and Serve Espresso Coffee, Coffee Masterclass, Milk Texturing and Coffee Art, and Palate Training and Sensory Analysis Coffee (the one that I’m most interested in!).

Phil Barista Coffee Academy

A short demo was also done by a representative from the Philippine Barista & Coffee Academy Inc. If you’re interested to be a barista, you may choose to enroll at their school which is located in Greenhills, San Juan.

latte art

Here’s a sample of the finished cappuccino done by the barista from PBCA. Nice, huh?

Dems being assisted in making latte art

One of my blogger friends, Dems from GeekyKitch, was one of those who got to try making their own latte art. They were assisted by the baristas from San Remo and DeLonghi. If you guys dream of getting your own espresso machines, make sure to check out the stuff from DeLonghi and San Remo!

Bennett and Palmer

There were a number of participants who were willing to share their coffee to the public during the week-long event. One of them was Bennett and Palmer, who had the Hello5 Vietnamese coffee and Marou’s single-origin artisanal dark chocolate flavors on display during the event.

Hello 5 coffee

What’s unique about Hello5 Vietnamese coffee is its association with the Feng Shui (风水)philosophy. They have five different kinds of coffee which may suit drinkers who fall under a specific element:

Original (best brewed as Vietnamese espresso) – for those under the Metal sign

Regular  – for those under the Earth sign

Organic (Arabica and Culi Buon Me Thuot coffee beans) – for those under the Wood sign

Deluxe (Arabica and Robusta beans) – for those under the Fire sign

Mondo (blended from two types of high-grade mocha beans) – for those under the Water sign

18 Days coffee packs

Another interesting brand was called 18 Days. If you’re thinking why they decided to use that particular brand name, here’s their answer: 

Why 18 Days? You should consume your coffee within 18 days from the day it was roasted. Coffee flavors and aroma start to deteriorate rapidly two (2) weeks after the date of roasting. We roast on demand. (Note: Quote taken from 18 Days’ official website)

Coffee Alamid from 18 Days

One of the products they are most proud of is their Coffee Alamid, or the Philippine Civet Coffee. Coffee Alamid is from the droppings of the civet cats who roam some of the mountains here in the Philippines. I know some people may find it disgusting, but they’re actually pretty cool. What’s admirable about 18 Days is that they don’t cage the civet cats; the cats roam the mountains freely and the forest dwellers collect the droppings early in the morning when the cats are asleep.

The Coffee Alamid is a blend of Arabica, Liberica and Exelsa beans and offer a clean cup of coffee to those who are willing to try it.  If you want to learn more about this VERY expensive coffee (with a kilo reaching Php24,000), visit 18 Days’ / Bote Central’s official website here.

Kickstart Coffee

A few steps away from 18 Days’ booth is Silca Coffee Roasting Company / Kick-start Coffee. This family-run business has been in the coffee industry since 1977 and continue to share their coffee with the public through different avenues. You may find their products at Rustan’s Supermarkets,  Landmark, Sofitel Hotel Manila’s Gift Shop and even online at Taste Central.

kickstart coffee and juju eats

They also partner with Juju Eats to create three special blends for their customers: Cold Brew Coffee, Nutmilk Latte and Mexican Mocha. I didn’t get to try these during the Coffee Con, but am looking forward to getting a few bottles for myself some other time.

If you have a restaurant, cafe, etc. and want to offer Kick-start Coffee to your own customers, you may get in touch with this brand’s team through their website.

Kickstart and Megaworld Lifestyle Malls limited edition coffee

Kickstart Coffee also offered a line of limited edition coffee which they made in partnership with Megaworld Lifestyle Malls.

Vincent Navarro

After all that coffee, we were treated to an art session with coffee grounds visual artist Mr. Vincent Navarro

Vincent Navarro profile

Mr. Navarro’s use of coffee as an art medium for his thesis in U.P. Baguio earned him the Outstanding Thesis award. Even until today, he continues to work with coffee farmers in Benguet and his artworks help raise the public’s awareness on the farmers conditions and/or lifestyles. During my conversation with Mr. Navarro, I learned that when he’s not finishing personal projects, he accepts commission-based work from people who’re interested to have their portraits done using coffee grounds.

coffee art

During our little workshop, Mr. Navarro provided each of us a template, dried coffee grounds, glue and several pieces of toothpicks to use for our own coffee art. It was a very time consuming task, but I found it to be such a relaxing thing to do. I also felt so proud of my work afterwards even if it wasn’t the prettiest one done. 🙂

coffee con vendors collage

Apart from the brands I’ve mentioned above, other participants included CRAFT Coffee Revolution, Coffee Empire, J.Co Donuts, Marks & Spencer, Tokyo Bubble Tea, etc.

The Eastwood Coffee Con was held at the Eastwood Mall Atrium from July 14-20, 2014. If you missed the 1st Coffee Con, you can still enjoy coffee-related activities at the Coffee Culture Fest at the Venice Piazza Atrium in McKinley from July 14-27, 2014.

**A big THANK YOU to Ms. Rachel Syfargo and the rest of the Megaworld Lifestyle Malls team for inviting Have at You to the launch!

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