Kohiraifu 珈琲生活, a Japanese word that means coffee life.
The Netherlands has a unique lifestyle that allows us to be carefree, relaxed and jolly. As musicians, though, we are often occupied with practices, rehearsals, lessons and concerts. To enjoy our leisure time, we like to explore and learn about new things, and that’s how we discover our love for coffee. Coffee has, since then, become our daily happiness and inspiration.
Not only have we found joy in coffee tasting, we’ve also discovered a space for us to meditate and to contemplate. We've developed our way of pouring coffee that allows us to be patient and encourages us to find our inner peace. We find this experience especially crucial for our musical development as it also sparks creativity. No matter how stressed or busy we are, spending some time to brew a nice cup of coffee has been a significant part of our everyday life.
In 2018, we came across a Japanese food programme which introduced Chatei Hatou 茶亭羽當, an old coffee shop in Tokyo. Watching how the barista brewed his coffee was so mesmerizing and enchanting for us. It was simply aesthetically pleasing to contemplate. The relationship between the customer and the owner was intimately connected through coffee. Ever since then, drip coffee began to linger in our minds.
To revive the intimate feelings, we spent a lot of time learning about drip coffee and collecting Japanese brewing equipment. Surprisingly, we discover interesting stories one after another between the Netherlands and Japan.
From 1637, the Netherlands ceased the Shimabara Rebellion 島原の乱 for the Tokugawa shogunate 江戸幕府, and since then established diplomatic relations with Japan. The Netherlands and Japan have been good friends.
Even during “Sakoku 鎖国", the isolationist foreign policy in Japan between the seventeenth century and nineteenth century, the Netherlands was the only country allowed to trade with Japan.
During these two hundred years, the Japanese loved the westernisation introduced by the Netherlands, including culture, technology, politics, medicine etc. They developed a body of knowledge on Dutch culture and called it Rangaku 蘭学, literally Dutch learning. On the other side, Dutch merchants transported Japanese ceramics, like Arita ware, and tea to Europe in large quantities. The Dutch were also fascinated about Japanese culture.
Around 1700, coffee was introduced to Dejima in Nagasaki via the Dutch.
In 1817, Udagawa Yōan 宇田川榕菴, a Japanese Rangaku scholar, also a coffee lover, named coffee from Dutch "koffie".
In 1992, as a highly modernised city, Nagasaki established a Holland Village. One of the highlights in the village was a Dutch cafe, which was built as a remembrance of the Dutch people who contributed to the fabulous beverage.
Along the journey pursuing Japanese coffee culture and history, we realized that today as we live in 2020, there is actually a special chemistry about coffee that reacts between Holland and Japan.
Today, we are bringing this top tier Japanese coffee culture back to Holland, it is interesting how history paved its way so that we could reflect on these stories and relationships that seem to be forgotten.
Join us to pursue the “Ikigai” in our daily lives!
As we come to the understanding of the art of coffee drinking, we are able to experience the innovative, delicate and persistent passion from the Japanese. This is why within a few decades, Japanese coffee culture has developed so well, that is known to the world. Of course, we are not only sharing the elaborated coffee techniques, but we would also like to share the philosophy of life from a Japanese perspective.
This is a way of pursuing happiness and satisfaction of life. Through coffee, we can see the glimpse of “Ikigai” anytime we like to, even in the midst of a busy life we can enjoy a sudden period of happiness and seize the precious moment just like the blossoming Sakura that stays in our heart.
Life is short, live in the moment.
Colours of life connect perfectly with the abundant flavours of coffee. This is our experience with Japanese drip coffee. At first, we were so attracted by the excitement that coffee has brought to us. Now, we are simply amazed by the abundance and richness of specialty coffee that we are so fascinated about. We realised that each and every cup of coffee we brew can taste differently. Somehow it reflects the weight of our heart, a very meaningful self-discovery journey.
Who would have thought that life can turn out so surprisingly? Today we would like to offer you these premium equipment, and on top of that we also like to share with you this authentic experience that lights up our daily lives. Let the fragrance and taste of coffee colour up your regular routines, and bring unexpected happiness into your lives.