(BBtv) Looking for the Perfect Bean: Kyle Glanville's World Coffee Tour, part 1 - Brazil.

Boing Boing tv's global coffee correspondent Kyle Glanville is looking for the perfect bean, and you're invited along for the ride. You may recall his earlier appearances on the show when the 2008 US World Barista Champion introduced us to coffee roasting and espresso brewing at Intelligentsia.

Today, we debut a series of episode featuring Kyle on a world coffee tour, and we join him as he visits plantations to learn about the growing, harvesting, and processing techniques of Intelligentsia suppliers around the globe.

In this first episode, Kyle visits the Fazenda Conquista plantation in Minas Gerais, Brazil where Ipanema Coffees grows, dries, and roasts their goods, with lots of weird agro-gadgets and machines you probably haven't seen before -- some low-tech, some high-tech, but all really cool to watch. This plantation is one of the largest in Brazil, with 12 million coffee plants spread out over about 25 square miles of varying terrain.

One of the most fun things about producing BBtv is working with people like Kyle, who share their expertise and life experiences with us in video through their own eyes. I learned so much watching this first installment with the BBtv team -- I especially loved the giant machines that look like AT-AT walkers, lumbering through the neatly trimmed rows of coffee plants. Also, for someone who drinks as much espresso as I do -- how did I never know that coffee beans are surrounded by an edible, sweet fruit, that when dried intact with the bean, make the flavor richer?

Oh, and you have to check out the aerial tour of the plantation, which you can do in Google Maps or Google Earth: Link to Fazenda Conquista / Ipanema Coffees .kmz.

Get ready for more of these java adventures with Kyle -- we're working on more, as he wanders the planet, looking for the perfect bean.

Previous BBtv episodes featuring Kyle Glanville's Coffee explorations:

* A Morning at Intelligentsia Coffee Part 2
* A Morning at Intelligentsia Part 1

Link to Boing Boing tv blog post with downloadable video and daily podcast subscription instructions.


  1. Well, just a correction from a brazillian reader (me, hohoho). The Ipanema Coffees is just a name. The farm “Fazenda Conquista” is based in Minas Gerais. Ipanema its a neighborhood in Rio de Janeiro, a tottally different state and 300 km distant from Minas Gerais.

    Its just it. I love the site, sorry for the annoying correction and for the bad english! :P

    1. @pi4nobl4ck, thanks for the heads up! I’ve corrected my geographical goof there. Muita obrigada!

  2. Wow, is it just me or is anyone else horrified at that picture knowing how well coffee grows in the shade of the rainforest. Coffee is a crop that should not be grown in clearcut plantations like that.

  3. @#5:

    You’re right. But I’m sure Kyle and the gang will hit up other farms and locations that do coffee in the rainforest model. Almost all coffee in Brazil (the world’s #1 producer by far) is harvested this way. That particular fazenda is one of the better ones.

    The world is the way it is; those clear-cuts are not recent. This is crop land just like the cornfields of Iowa are. Not saying it makes it right, but there it is.

    BTW, boingboingers, how many episodes of this are planned?

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