Culture Cooler.: Tokyo Coffee Fest Cannes Young Lions + Bukavu’s Coffee, May 23.

climbing cultural ladders



On May 21 + 22, Tokyo held its second Tokyo Coffee Festival at the  Farmers Market at Unu.

The event’s defining tag ‘Life With Coffee’ allowed for appropriate anticipation for an event geared around a coffee lifestyle. More than twenty vendors including coffee roasters and lifestyle shop fronts, convened for the idea of what a life through the lens of specialty coffee could not only taste like, but look like.

The vendor list was healthy, including Life Size Crib from Kokubunji which explores coffee in a very small space; second hand bookstore, Sunny Boy Books which sells a wide-genre of lifestyle books, reportedly stocking over 4000 titles; and  products like carafes and jugs by Slow Coffee Style to the handmade coffee bags of Kissaco.

Such convergence of coffee and the goods that can accompany them, make for the kind of ephemeral vibes that comes with a festival, where craft and culture aren’t trumped by one another but instead play together.


CANNES, France


Variety The Children’s Charity

save that cup

A lion and a lioness can be now heard in the coffee media industry. Two members of Group M’s Mindshare – Mark Longacre and Catharine Young – created an advertising campaign that utilized coffee as a strategical medium targeting the engagement of Millennials in charitable giving. Personalizing the identity of those with special needs in the Variety Freedom Program, each coffee cup was personalized with custom art of those being helped by the program.

The ‘coffee’ strategy earned Longacre and Young first place in media “for the 2016 U.S. Young Lions competition during Cannes. Paper cups are getting a good look.  Lets color!


BUKAVU, Democratic Republic of Congo


the land of finals

As the reemergence of specialty coffee gains more footing in Rwanda and The Democratic Republic of Congo, events like Saveur Du Kivu, give the bean a world stage and a global audience to focus on how its playing out its role in building new social and economic ties bound by culture.

The first crop of Kivu Coffee, Muungano, named after the cooperative which also produces it, made it to the finals in this years competition.  True to the meaning of the coop’s name, it is togetherness in production, in humanity that ultimately results in this recognition. Time to jump in a lake.