I’ll have a Double EleXpresso with an Extra Dash of Poo

Ally Burnie 

Interesting … Black Ivory Coffee

Have you ever thought of yourself as a true coffee connoisseur and specialist? Don’t lie, of course you have. Aren’t we all?

However, I would bet one thousand coffee beans and a gallon of milk that you’ve never tried Black Ivory Coffee.

Well now you can. Anantara Hotels, Resorts and Spas has introduced Black Ivory Coffee at its four resorts in the Maldives, joining the group’s Anantara Golden Triangle resort in Thailand as the first hotels in the world to offer one of the most unique coffee experiences on the planet.

What is spectacular about this coffee, and slightly nauseating and most definitely not for the faint-hearted (or stomached), is the process of its creation.

The coffee beans are digested and naturally refined by Thai elephants. Scientific research (apparently) suggest that during digestion, the enzymes of the elephant break down coffee protein.

Since protein is one of the main factors responsible for bitterness in coffee, less protein means almost no bitterness. Hooked yet?

At a retail price of approximately US$1,100 per kilogramme, this coffee is also one of the most expensive and exclusive in the world.  Currently 50 kilogrammes are available for sale.

The process begins with selecting the best Thai Arabica beans that have been picked from an altitude of 1,500 metres.  The beans are digested and then deposited by the elephants and the individual beans are handpicked by mahouts (elephant trainer and carer) and sundried.

The coffee is ground by hand at the table and brewed using technology developed in 1840 in Austria.  This balancing syphon is not only a beautiful machine, but also widely recognised as the best way to brew coffee.  The consistent 93° Celsius temperature and contact time between water and bean result in a very clean and flavourful taste.  The four minute brewing process is visually enticing and leaves a lasting impression.

Enticing? Perhaps not. Interesting and definitely worth a try? Most definitely.

For more information and bookings, visit

Share this article