Science!

The World’s Most Coveted and Controversial Coffee, Now in Your Home


When brewed properly, high-quality coffee is described as tasting bright and fruity — but a bitter flavor often remains at the fore. Brooklyn-based roaster Afineur is setting out to change this with Cultured Coffee, a coffee bean engineered to minimize bitterness and enhance otherwise subtle flavors. The world’s most coveted and controversial coffee, Kopi Luwak, served as the inspiration for Afineur’s creation. But whereas Kopi Luwak relies on enzymes within the Indonesian civet cat’s stomach to break down bitterness-causing proteins (yes, really), Cultured Coffee employs controlled secondary fermentation to achieve the same end.

Initially funded on Kickstarter, Cultured Coffee is now available for purchase online. Afineur’s biochemistry experiments won’t end here, either, as the company is also experimenting with biologically decaffeinated coffee beans.

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