Sometimes you come across products that just make you stop and think “how the hell did they think of that?”
Kopi Luwak is one of those such products. Ever since I starting drinking coffee I’ve been looking for the best flavor, aroma, acidity, etc. Of course I had to come across the infamous kopi luwak, but I was surprised when I found out how it was derived. I was interested in how anyone would actually stumble upon such a discovery. I’m not sure if this is really the background of it, but here’s a convincing excerpt from Wikipedia:
The origin of kopi luwak is closely connected with the history of coffee production in Indonesia. In the early 18th century the Dutch established the cash-crop coffee plantations in their colony in the Dutch East Indies islands of Java and Sumatra, including Arabica coffee introduced from Yemen. During the era of Cultuurstelsel (1830—1870), the Dutch prohibited the native farmers and plantation workers from picking coffee fruits for their own use. Still, the native farmers wanted to have a taste of the famed coffee beverage. Soon, the natives learned that certain species of musang or luwak (Asian Palm Civet) consumed the coffee fruits, yet they left the coffee seeds undigested in their droppings. The natives collected these luwaks’ coffee seed droppings, then cleaned, roasted and ground them to make their own coffee beverage. The fame of aromatic civet coffee spread from locals to Dutch plantation owners and soon became their favourite, yet because of its rarity and unusual process, the civet coffee was expensive even during the colonial era.
more info from their link http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kopi_Luwak