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  • The Nusantara Bulletin

Preserving Minangkabau Heritage: A Journey with Home of Kawa

In November 2020, the seeds of Home of Kawa were sown, sprouting from a personal journey of rediscovery and connection. Unable to indulge in coffee due to health concerns, the founder, Fadhil Marta, embarked on a quest to find a suitable alternative, eventually reminiscing about the childhood drink from Minangkabau known as "kawa daun" – a brew made from coffee leaves.


Unable to find a match for the taste remembered from hometown days, the decision was made to recreate that authentic flavor. Thus began a journey of exploration into Minangkabau culture, market dynamics, and product research.



Personal Connection to Minangkabau Culture

The inspiration behind starting Home of Kawa stemmed from personal experience. "I couldn't drink coffee due to health issues," the Marta explains. "I remembered my childhood drink from Minang, 'kawa daun' - a brew made from coffee leaves. Unable to find one online that tasted like the one from my hometown, I decided to recreate it."


Marta, an 'Urang Minang' (Minangnese person), specifically 'simabua,' has ancestral ties to a village near Mount Marapi called Ampek Angkek. Through kawa, a deeper understanding of the people’s history and culture has been gained.


Collaboration with Local Farmers and Artisans

From the outset, Home of Kawa has prioritized collaboration with local kawa farmers and artisans, fostering partnerships that extend beyond mere business transactions. "We source directly from local kawa crafters for our klasik kawa," Marta notes, "one of them has been a kawa crafter for 15 years and is the 5th generation of her kawa family legacy."


Innovations in coffee leaf processing have been introduced, enhancing both product quality and community involvement. "We turn this kawa klasik into several blends," the Marta adds, "each with a unique character and story."


The production process can be divided into three phases. Firstly, the coffee leaf sourcing occurs early in the morning when the leaves are picked according to the type of kawa that will be made. Quality control measures ensure consistency and excellence before distribution to consumers.


Preserving Tradition Amid Challenges

Challenges in preserving and promoting Minangkabau's kawa culture include limited historical documentation and the imperative to conduct firsthand research in remote regions.


In conclusion, Home of Kawa embodies a journey of cultural rediscovery and innovation, celebrating Minangkabau heritage while embracing the future of kawa culture. As kawa becomes a symbol of community discourse and conviviality, its legacy continues to thrive in the heart of every cup.

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