A NEW PERSPECTIVE ON COFFEE: Coffee Culture Seminar by Le Meridien Hotel and Illy Coffee (Part 1).


This post is going to be divided into two posts: one for the event itself and one for the food. and it's going to be pretty long with 70+ photos combined!

First of all, let me just say Thank You for Le Meridien Hotel for inviting me to attend the awesome "A NEW PERSPECTIVE ON COFFEE: Coffee Culture Seminar", in cooperation with Illy Coffee International. Illy is a major brand specializing in coffee and the brand came from Italy. It's such a blasted moment for me joining the event and getting to know more and more about coffee since everyone if you knew me and follow my activities on social networks, I often posted photos of coffee... Clarifies enough to state that I am a DEVOTED COFFEE LOVER!

This event is held for food bloggers and media and I get to meet fellow food bloggers and medias like Kompas (tremendous), MNC and more.

If you're wondering what "Coffee Culture Seminar" is? It is an event held (for people who have passion for coffees) to know more about coffee: how it grows, where it grows best, how to produce it and all. Lucky enough for me, this seminar has totally bring my knowledge of coffee few levels up and I'm falling deeper and deeper in love with coffee.

This seminar is also a show case and workshop, where people are given chances to see the process of creating a perfect coffee and actually taught to make their own coffee (going to tell you more about that)

Do remember that this seminar doesn't literally mean whatever posted here is the best, we are all blessed with minds and different perspective to see things, it's just the theory, skill and (probably gift) in everything about coffee they've brought with them for a long time, but so far I kinda agree with how the coffees are made and ended up tasting because I'm fortunate enough to get the chance to taste most of the coffees, and let me tell you upfront: it's super delicious as in HAO ZHI!

The seminar was held at the Rendezvous Cafe in Le Meridien and if you don't believe I got invited, here's the copy of the invitation microsite -.-", so many of my friends make jokes about how I managed to get a lot of food tasting sessions *facepalm*

I brought the-always-same-date for events: my sister... and once we stepped in and greeted by very well-mannered staffs, we're also given a glass of juice and one cup of Tiramisu coffee, and by the way, the Tiramisu coffee is drop dead delicious.


Tiramisu Cofee, just can't stand having that little. Need more.

Fresh Fruit Juice

Before we even get started to the process of the seminar, I wanna introduce you to some important people behind this gorgeous seminar, but if you want to skip, it's your choice, I can't control what you want to see here (*tears)

Mr. Robert Hogenstijn (fancy last name)
He is the General Manager of Le Meridien Hotel, of course important people are given the first chance to give the opening speech *clear throat*

Ms. Arie Ardianti
Thank you for inviting me to this event, looking forward to meet you again in another chance and event from Le Meridien.

Mr. Michael Gibbons
He is the speaker and coffee specialist and is also the Brand Manager of which organized companies like Illy, TWG and more. He is such a funny guy and he actually the ice breaker. I thought this seminar is going to be all serious and stiff, but thanks to him, it's totally not, not even one percent of stiffness. He is also a chairman/lecturer for an academy specializing in coffee learning: Universita del Caffe Indonesia.

Eduardo got the best photo! Almost editorial like.
Mr. Eduardo Vastolo
An Italian coffee specialist/barista and has been cooperating with Illy since 2012 and appointed by Illy as the Barista Trainer for Asia Pacific Region, he is super charming and my sister actually is now a fan of him. He was the manager of the Miramontee Mare hotel back in 2005...wow how can I know so much details about him? Be smart! I captured the essential slideshow and learned it back when I'm writing. Somebody gave me a trophy for being a genius (LOL, just kidding).

Here are some photos related to the event so that this entry is not going to be boring.








In between pampering the utilities and making coffees, Michael Gibbons explanied to us everything about the coffee: starting from the process until how the coffee seeds can be produced and manufactured until end up becoming a great drink. I just found out the the first ever coffee was found in Ethiophia and then moved to Srilanka and then get here to our beloved country, Indonesia and distributed across the world ever since. N E V E R underestimate the Indonesian coffees because we are the top coffee producers (4th all over the world) along with arabica coffees. Illy coffee happens to use the great arabican :).

Getting to an event along with friends from the medias are like competing on the battlefield because we all try to get the best shots of everything Michael and Eduardo did. I feel like a complete paparazzi. I hope you can still feel the awesomeness of the seminar from my photos.

I have always wanted to have this at home

Michael's showing us the base of every coffee drinks: always start with fresh and delightful ESPRESSO!

Yes that's true, there's no coffee drink that doesn't include any coffee (THE NAME IS COFFEE) and every creation of coffee drinks needs to be started from the best espresso you can made.

So how to make a perfect espresso?
Take 7 grams of grilled coffee beans and set it on the espresso machine and a perfect temperature is 90 celcius.

This is what Michael described as great color (hazelnut), with tiny foams and smell of espresso (well you can't but it smells strong but calming). Obviously no editing happened on this photo since I wanna give you the true clear view.
Since it's using the great Arabican coffee, the tiny foams will lasted for around 15 minutes and then disappeared.
Do not mistaken Espresso as the highest form of coffee with the highest level of caffeinne, that's a wrong myth, the truth is, the highest level of caffeinne you can find is in coffee form is THE FILTER COFFEE (american or percolated) with 85 mg (in a 190ml cup), Espresso falls on the third after Soluble coffee.

Another myth that needs to be straightened.... DOES CAFFEINE ACCUMULATE OUR SYSTEM? the truth is... IT DOESN'T! Caffeinne will be all gone 4 (four) hours after the consumption. So release all your worries and remember that coffees are kind.

In case you're wondering that the darker the color of the coffee beans leading to the bitter the coffee is... then you're right, the darker the coffee beans roasted, the more bitter coffee you'll get, and also for your information as the result of roasted beans: the volume increases 60% but the weight falls by 20%, scientifically awkward.

Anyway, let's move forward to the most exciting and anticipating part of the seminar: LATTE ART!

DO REMEMBER while creating hot coffee drinks, use full-cream milk instead of UHT so that you'll get thicker and more beautiful texture and you should use low-fat (skimmed) for the cold drinks so that the bubbles won't rise.

I'm guessing everyone (including me) were waiting for this part so badly. I am personally a fan of latte art, I think it needs training and requires exercises to finally made something worth to be called a latte art, let's be serious, don't consider an abstract all over the place spill of milk as an abstract latte art, no such thing. It might turn into a messy looking cappuccino instead.


This is the basic latte art. No contrast form but there's shape, it's quite beautiful actually, but wait there's more.

Second attempt: Michael wanted to create a beautiful latte art of "leaves" and it turns out like a dream, he actually made this twice if you're wondering why the latte art from the two photos look different.

 Preferring this one, looking more complicated and gorgeous.


Third attempt: Michael is trying to create a heart shaped latte art and it turns out...

 Made with LOVE, and deep even more because this one is actually given to me and I got to sip this awesome coffee! It tasted so delicious, not overpowering, just well balanced and sooo delicious. Even without a glimpse of sugar but it's so perfectly balanced.

Cappuccino Freddo.
Cappuccino Freddo, sounds like a good name for a kind of cappuccino, Eduardo told us that Cappuccini Freddo is the cooler name for Iced Cappuccino it's going to be cold or at least cool, and there's a special trick to make a beautiful cold drinks from a coffee...

Anyway, you're going to need two glasses, ice bricks filter and self-confidence.

First step:
Put the ice bricks into the glass and cool up the wall of the glass by spinning it around for about 15-20 seconds and remove all the excess water away, this is the main reason why sometimes coffee doesn't taste very good, because the barista did not put out the water and that's why it's mixed with the coffee, and some amount of water level can change the coffee taste pretty significantly.

Second step:
Put the espresso and milk in and stir again, remember that the glass is already cold plus it has ice in it, and after everything's well stirred. The Italian coffee making technique is actually not to have ice so you have to move the content (stirred milk and espresso) into another glass without the ice bricks.

Third step:
Make a decent milk foam as the garnish and you can leave it plain or you can create a nice latte art on the milk foam. Your choice.

There you have it! A nice looking Cappuccino Freddo, but Eduardo gave his latte art skill on the foam.

Three drinks already, and the heart shaped one on the right is the Cappuccino Freddo :).

This time is Michael's turn to create a nice and artsy looking Cappuccino Freddo and this is by a request from a Lady. Different than the latte art, Cappuccino Freddo uses chocolate powder and chocolate sauce to develop the art.

Michael looking so joyous while creating the latte art.

Tadaaaah! Say pretty.

Another Michael's creation (by request).



Eduardo is totally my favorite barista ever, master of baristas! My sister wanted to have Iced Caramel Macchiato and he made his version for her us!



after a little touch of art...

A W E S O M E!
 Time to sip!

The seminar lasted for two hours and from that two hours I already had tons of new knowledge mixed with tons of fun, love and chances to actually seeing it live is PRICELESS!

Last but not least...

Never forget to snap some moments with these great people!



THANK YOU Le Meridien and Illy Coffee for making this post happen!

but wait... this post is not over yet!!! I still got part two and I'm going to write a post about the unique culinary experience I'm having here.

Meanwhile, let's have a little teaser...
Loving how the new watermarks doing on the photos.


See you very soon!

ps: super sorry for the mistakes of spelling occured, feel free to correct me.