The green LA Girl blog has an interesting email
from Geoff Watts (of Chicago based Intelligentsia) about Direct Trade (aka Relationship Coffee),
Fair Trade and the Cup of Excellence, its an interesting read. The Cup of Excellence (or CoE) seems to do an awesome job of getting
great prices for some great coffees (often from small family owned and run farms), and seems to be good for all involved, some of the
lots have fetched serious money, see the Brazil results
where the #1 lot went for $49.75 / Pound!. I drank some of the #2 Brazil lot while up at Stumptown (the Fazenda São Benedito) an amazing drink, especialy when made on the clover, but even at home made on the $3 melita manual drip it was a great cup. I have some of the #1 Bolivia on its way to me from Ecco cafe, can't wait to try it out. The Ecco folks have a good selection of various CoE lots, I'm looking forward to trying out some of the others too.