Heading Southwards to Ping-Dong Coffee Cupping Competition 2009/2010

Last year in 2009, there was a pretty horrible typhoon on Aug. 8th, which caused a serious damage to most central and southern Taiwan regions. Among those regions, Ping-Dong, the southernmost tip of Taiwan, also went through a bad time in this natural disaster.

People has planted quite a few coffee trees in the higher altitude area of Ping-Dong County, around 1500m-1700m. This is a very rare altitude without the harm of frost since Ping-Dong located in this most tropical-like climate zone in Taiwan. In my first attendance of the Competition in Dec. 2008, I tasted some really potential Taiwanese-grown coffees from Ping-Dong County. But at that time the processing methods of farmers were not mature enough to make their coffees shine. Yet, like I said, potential was there already.

Thanks to Mr. Lee of Ping-Dong Coffee Estate, farmers all over Taiwan have more professional equipment to assist the green coffee processing. Hope to see some great stuffs this year.

Gotta catch the train now. See you guys when I'm back.


Can't Delete This Blog, So...

Some anonymous reader gave me a kind suggestion on this blog that my contents are too old and needs to catch up my creativity and originality. Many thanks for the suggestions but I have to honestly tell you how I want to delete this blogger blog.

Not because I don't want to write anything in English, but because I already have two blogs to update. New biz has caught my time too much. So I think stopping updating this blog is the only thing I can do. I have never been used to the Blogger interface anyway.

If you guys want to chat over anything, please visit the plurk or the FB fan club. I'll be posting there but mostly in Chinese language. If you need to speak to me, feel free to type English contents. Not a problem at all.


FREE SHIPPING Policies for International Orders Only!!

****FREE SHIPPING POLICIES is ONLY for 4-Arts Zero Defect Coffees Line for the promotional purpose. Combined orders of ZDC(Zero Defect Coffees) and ARC(Aroma Roast Coffees) can never achieve the value limits listed below. Therefore, please do not ask me about such question if your interest is aroused by the FREE SHIPPING POLICIES.****

I understand that many fellow oversea aficionados who might be interested in my "zero-defect" aroma roast coffees, but most of you have been stopped by the wall of high shipping rate. Now that I don't offer any lower-priced choices, I think I should do something to encourage more ppl to try these coffees out. YES....Here comes my FREE SHIPPING POLICIES. Watch this:

1. Hong Kong & Macao Policy:

(a) Single order which contains 3 * 230g bags, plus total bean price over US$110.00, then you can save around US$14.00 shipping fee.

(b) Single order which contains 6 * 230g bags, plus total bean price over US$180.00, then you can save around US$16.50 shipping fee.

2. Pacific & Asia Policy:
(a) Single order which contains 3 * 230g bags, plus total bean price over US$120.00, then you can save around US$17.50 shipping fee.

(b) Single order which contains 6 * 230g bags, plus total bean price over US$190.00, then you can save around US$19.50 shipping fee.

3. Europe & North America Policy:

(a) Single order which contains 3 * 230g bags, plus total bean price over US$130.00, then you can save around US$22.50 shipping fee.

(b) Single order which contains 6 * 230g bags, plus total bean price over US$205.00, then you can save around US$27.50 shipping fee.

4. Central/South America & Africa Policy: Sorry not in the service.

Get ready to place your order? Check the Monthly Offering List.


Horrifying Indonesian Coffees

Many coffee drinkers in Taiwan love to drink Indonesian Traditional Dry Processed coffees, namely the Sumatra Mandheling, Lintong, Toroja, Kalosi and the like. Even many in the biggest coffee consuming country, the United States, consider those are "unique and exotic" coffees. But how many of you have really seen or got a closer contact with these coffees in their green states? I think not so many. To be a little educational for readers, and also to let more ppl know how "zero defect" coffees are made of, I hereby present this post plus the photos to show you the "TRUTH" of that EXOTIC taste.

See the photo on the upper deck....Those are the defective greens that were culled out from the Sulawesi Toraja Gr.1 on my offering list. With my strictest standard to define "defects," I rejected nearly 45% of this batch, by weight, which is a more precise way to count the defects. The unsorted weighed 1000g and the rejected weighed 430g. That's how I define the rate.
You probably think I'm crazy. 45% rejection rate is almost 2~3 times compared to most sorters' standard, let alone the non-sorters'. I am especially severe to the Indonesian greens because I always see the moldy holes smiling and that makes me faint. Besides, I don't want any "possible" defects to ruin what I chase for a clean cup. So I remove whatever are considered as "cup destroyers" in my rules. Why clean cup in the Indonesian coffees? Shouldn't they be earthy and dirty as it's always been? NOOOOO....DON'T tell me that they should be that way. Let me SHOW you that they SHOULD NOT be. The "roasted molds" from the defect beans and some other over-fermented greens ARE the direct components of what you regarded as "exotic taste." Now do you still connect that taste with yummy or Umai? I bet you don't...

Alas...ever since my first experience with green coffee beans bought from one famous US green retailer when I started my home-roasting journey, I have been shocked and frightened by the scenery I came across with the very first pack of Sumatra Mandheling Gr.1. So I've always disliked those traditional processed Indonesian coffees...too many defects to remove...and hurts my eyes....

Before I knew this, I also was the kind of person who considered the "taste" unique and funny. But after I found out where that taste came from, you know, I had no choice but stepping into the de-defect hell...never ends.

Now look at the below photo. They are the 100% clean, zero defect Sulawesi Toraja Gr.1 green coffee beans. Looks great, I know. But you should try the roasted and will agree how important hand-sorting is. That makes the hell-no cup become heavenly. That's where the magic is.

A moral by the way, ALWAYS sort your green coffees ASAP before the beetles dig more holes on the healthy greens. The longer you keep them unsorted, the more defects you will need to reject. To me, I don't want the beetles to invade into the "healthy neighborhood." You know what I mean.

Panama Hacienda La Esmeralda 2007 New Crop Arrived!!!

Remember the Esmeralda Special Gesha last year? It's going to come back to my offering list again, and it's a 2007 NEW CROP. You must try this and you deserve to know that Hacienda La Esmeralda Gesha has won the 1st place again in the 2007 Best of Panama cupping competition...again....Yes, it's so cool to see the same farm remain its unrivaled position for a continuous 4 YEARS.

Due to the reason that I'm not a "commercial roaster" and my way of dealing with the most labor-consuming zero-defect policy for every coffee I sell, I am going to offer just some limited quantities here. If you want to try the Hacienda La Esmeralda Special Gesha 2007 in the ZERO-DEFECT form, with the ultimate aroma preserved roast style, just leave the following info to me via Email, to reserve this fancy stuff from here.


Street Address:


Postal Code:

Phone Number (including your country code):

Shipping Method:


Order Content: (Coffee name, Quantity, & Roast Style Option)

The coffee has arrived via AIR to keep its freshness and quality. Your order will be roasted and shipped in the nearest roasting day after this babe is well-sorted by me.

IMPORTANT REMINDER: The bean price from the farm has already raised up. The sale price per 1/2 lb. is US$49.90.

HOW TO Reserve The Panama Hacienada La Esmeralda 2007 New Crop

1. All reserved for "roasted whole bean" of this coffee. Bean Price US$49.00/230g. Bonus for Reservations, your order will be upgraded to a "250g pack" rather than the regular 230g.

2. Non-prepayment customers: Your Gesha coffee will be roasted and shipped out on the first nearest roasting day after Gesha greens arrives. Please leave a private msg below or email me to reserve the 2007 Esmeralda Special Gesha. See above for the necessary info that you are required to fill in.

3. Prepayment customers: You have the privilege to reserve 2~3 packs of this coffee. The more you choose to prepay, the more packs you can reserve. You can leave a private msg below or email me to reserve the 2007 Esmeralda Special Gesha. To become a prepayment customer, please see this for details. All your reserved packs will be automatically upgraded to 250g. Thank you, Prepayment customers!!

4. International orders? Please see this article for more info. Add an extra 0.5kg packaging weight to every order please.

Enjoy This!! Jamaican Blue Mtn No.1

The above pic was taken from a fresh arrival of "export quality" Mavis Bank JBM No.1. They are the "defect" part of JBM No.1. As you may see in the pic, the rejection rate is +25% to my first trial sorting only. Will it be higher? I don't know...yet. But I guarantee you there is no one else sorting the JBM No.1 greens like I do. And DARE you drink if all ingredients look like this? Imagine the moldy mouths smiling at you in your cup...ohh my....

The below pic is taken AFTER the defects are removed. And now it looks really clean, doesn't it? This one can only be purchased by my beloved prepayment customers and those "know-wells" international aficionados. Welcome to drop me an email if you are interested to know the price: nativity1018@yahoo.com.tw.

Updates: May 3rd, 2007. Reservation only. Thanks!


International Orders, Read This!! (Jan. 2010)

Acceptance Mark

International Orders Notice:

For those who are NOT in Taiwan but interested in buying some of my Zero Defect coffees. A few weeks ago, I had been hesitating if I should provide this service. But I finally convinced myself to do so. Now you are able to purchase coffee via a more convenient way.

1. PayPal users: Please contact me via my PayPal account "4-Arts Zero Defect Coffees" to send your payment. Please make good use of the email order function: nativity1018@yahoo.com.tw. I'll send a payment request form to you after that. All you need to do is to pay via credit card online and then wait for the coffees to come. Function TESTED OK. Feel free to buy via this way. Thanks!

2. Non-PayPal users: I've opened an account for oversea coffee aficionados to make the purchase thing smoother. Please see the instructions below and take notes on the bank info:

Beneficiary Bank: Cathay United Bank, Taoshing Branch
Bank Address: No. 445, Fu Shing Rd., Taoyuan City, Taoyuan County 330, Taiwan (R.O.C.)
Beneficiary Name: Hsieh Po Jung
Acct#: 034-08-004405-6

Correspondent Banks:
1. Bank of America N.T. & S.A, S.F. (BOFAUS6S)
2. Deutsche Banker Trust Company, New York Branch (BKTRUS33)
3. Bank of New York, N.Y. (IRVTUS3N)
4. Wachovia Bank, NY INTL (PNBPUS3NNYC)
5. Citibank, N.A., N.Y. (CITIUS33)
6. JP Morgan Chase Bank, N.Y. (CHASUS33)

Payment Instructions:
1. Accepted currency types: US dollars, Euros, English Pounds, Australian dollars, and Canadian dollars.
2. All prices are listed in US dollars. Please remember to recalculate if you choose to pay in a different currency. Check this tool Currency Converter.

3. Shipping Methods & Rates:
A. Postal Express (EMS), Recommend Method: Check the Shipping Rate page. You may receive the package within 3~5 work days. It's the cheapest rate for International orders. It's always recommeded to add the insurance to your orders to guarantee a safe delivery.
B. DHL, Faster but Much More Expensive: Check http://www.dhl-globalmail.com/ for your own country program. But if you buy from the US, the parcel will definitely be delayed because the regulations are strict for food related contents. See the Food Shipment to the USA.

4. AFTER you wire the payment (Bean price plus shipping fee), please email your receipt to me at: nativity1018@yahoo.com.tw for the confirmation. You may also like to use the Currency Converter to calculate the shipping fee.

5. Please fill in the following form in every order, cut down and paste to use:
Street Address:
Postal Code:
Phone Number
(including your country code):
Shipping Method:
Order Content:
(Coffee name, Quantity, & Roast Style Option)

6. Your will get an email notice before your package is shipped out.

Oversea Coffee Offerings: 2010/01

Zero Defect Single Origins:

1. Kenya AA Top S1, 2009 crop, Air-shipped directly from Kenya.


2. Jamaican Blue Mtn. R.S.W. Estates "No. ZERO," Fresh 2009/2010 crop, 40% of pre- and post-roasting defects are rejected).


3. Hawaiian, The Other Farm Kona Extra Fancy, 2009 crop, Air-shipped directly from Hawaii.


4. Panama, Don Pachi "Gesha", 2009 crop, best choice for average-priced Gesha.



Zero Defect Espresso Blends, S.O. Espressos:

All Blends are tested w/ a Synesso Cyncra to do the progressive pre-infusion, and w/ a Mazzer Robur. Also tested w/ a Rancilio Silvia, plus Mazzer Super Jolly, in a good way too.

1. Simon Hsieh Custom Budget Blends.

Zero Defect ingredients + Budget Control + Roast Optimized Profile

Volume Choices: 230g/350g/500g

Price: Depends on YOUR Budget. Tailor-made for YOU!

2. S.O. Espresso de Kenya AA Top S1.


3. S.O. Espresso de Hawaiian Kona TOF Extra Fancy.


4. S.O. Espresso de Panama Don Pachi "Gesha."


5. 20% Kona Blend, the lush taste is back now.


6. 30% Kona Blend, with a tender floral top note.




9. New Blends ALWAYS Under Developing!

Roast Style Selections (Choose the Style You Like Most)
Roast Style 1 → Light Roast means the coffee is roasted to the stage of the end of 1st crack. You get the most aroma and the strongest acidity in the cup. If you like to enjoy the most original flavor of a fine coffee, try this roast style.
Roast Style 2 → City Roast means the coffee is roasted to the stage counted from the end of 1st crack to 60 seconds after the end of 1st crack. At this stage, you can get a bit more dimensions in the flavor characteristics. The aroma is overwhelming and the acidity is strong with some comfortable sweetness, as if you are enjoying some juicy fruit. More body than Roast Style 1.
Roast Style 3 → City+ Roast means the coffee is roasted to the stage counted from 60 seconds after the end of 1st crack to the beginning of 2nd crack. The lightest classic North Italian Roast. At this stage, the aroma and acidity become a little weaker, but the more sweetness and better complexity make this cup rounded and easier to enjoy. For most of my offering coffees, I choose this roast style to present the ultimate translation of their flavors. But if you are not accustomed to the acidity in coffee, please try darker roasts, such as 5 or 6.
Roast Style 4 → Full City Roast means the coffee is roasted to the stage counted from the beginning of 2nd crack to 30 seconds after 2nd crack. The very classic North Italian Roast. At this stage the aroma becomes weaker and develops more pungency, the acidity dims a bit and the sweet/bittersweet profile rocks. You can drink some water to proove it.
Roast Style 5 → Full City+ Roast means the coffee is roasted to the stage counted from 30 seconds after 2nd crack to 60 seconds after 2nd crack. End of North Italian Roast. At this stage you can hardly feel the acidity and dancing aromas; instead, you get more bittersweetness and pungency notes and more body in the cup. Dry-Processed Mochas and Sumatra/Sulawesi coffees are roasted to this stage in most cases.
Roast Style 6 → Vienna Roast means the coffee is roasted to the stage counted from 60 seconds after 2nd crack to 90 seconds after 2nd crack. The classic Central Italian Roast. At this stage you cannot feel any acidity. The aroma becomes deep like some sandalwood. More bitter taste than all the above roasts. Dry-Processed Mochas can develop more winey tone when roasted to this stage.