Everything began when my husband chanced upon a pop-up cafe serving specialty coffee back home in the Philippines. I could still remember the spark on his face as he started to retell how amazed he was to taste nutty chocolate flavors on his cup.

The deep dive started during the early part of the COVID-19 pandemic. Being subject to lockdown became the force in learning the ropes of manual brewing. It struck an unexpected challenge, just like when I first discovered trail running, one of my other passions.

Coffee brewing science reminds me of when I had to train for a specific trail race. Like what mileage do I have to cover to train? What gears will I be needing? Is it steep enough for me to use poles? And in the case of manual brewing, what water ratio do I have to use? What tools, technique, grind size, or recipe do I use to extract the coffee?

But more than that, the very thing that got me hooked was reading about coffee origins. How it made me feel like going to a time machine and have a glimpse of how coffee producers put their hearts on what they do. Very awe-spiring!

In the meantime, I’m currently based in Bangkok as travel restrictions haven’t eased out. For now, my daily routine involves personal creative projects and doing remote work I’ve left back home. On afternoons, I brew coffee and during weekdays and explore local cafes whenever on weekends. I’m also a photographer, digital content creator, and loves exploring Hallyu or Korean Wave by watching k-drama and listening to k-pop.

Before specialty coffee, I frequently travel to explore local food, hike mountains, and join trail races. But thanks to coffee, it looks like there will be more on my list! I don’t know where this will lead me, but I’m sure it is excited and hopeful. I’m also open to part-time work so I can learn further. Who knows, I might end up being a coffee professional too.

Article by Jaja Ferrer Capili

 
 

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