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Specialty Coffee Shop at 2.5 tsubo Space in the Market
post : 2014.05.21 12:00
Makishi Public Market is a kitchen of Okinawa, which is heavily packed with local people when they come to buy food for every observance, and the culture of Chinese calendar remains strong here.
The number of visitors to the market has been increasing year by year. According to the survey by Naha City, 900, 000 people visit here a year.
At such market where the Okinawan culture and tourists intersect each other, a specialty coffee shop called “THE COFFEE STAND” stands at a 2.5 tsubo (about 8 m2 ) space.
This photo shows the coffee shop seen from the entrance and exit of Makishi Public Market.
While shooting around this place, obaa (*) from the market talked to me friendly.
“Please advertise this shop well. You could tell how many cups of coffee you enjoyed here.”
When I had an interview with the owner, Mr. Tsukasa Uehara said this.
Workers at the market gave me a tough word before opening my shop. “A coffee specialty shop won’t pay well.” But once I opened it, they have tried to encourage me so much that they are sometimes overkind.
(*) Okinawan elderly ladies are commonly called ‘obaa.’
In Okinawa, a specialty coffee shop is still rare. On top of that, the shop having only 2.5 tsubo space in the crowded market is so unique.
Specialty coffee is coffee beans selected and evaluated by the international fair just like wine.
As Mr. Uehara has passion on coffee beans, he severely selects them from the green coffee beans stage to remove dirt and other debris in 12 patterns.
Every process of making coffee - selecting beans, roasting, distillation has a unique philosophy and his interesting story goes on.
Roasting needs heat, which is about chemistry while distillation is boiling beans, which is about physics. He loves this sense of chemistry and physics.
After the experiences, what he got is the brewing method by AEROPRESS.
AEROPRESS is a device started in the coffee culture in northern Europe and spread throughout the world.
The device can bring out the goodness of beans of specialty coffee like those from Ethiopia and Kenya faithfully.
Brew beans, mix them slowly and press them gently and firmly.
Recently a fruity, acid flavor of lightly-roasted beans is well-evaluated; however, he ventures to choose heavily-roasted ones.
A piece of paper attaching a coffee cup explains about the coffee beans you are having. What a considerate service this is!
He plans to serve his coffee with brown sugar in the future.
“There is a series of brown sugar called “Hachishima (eight islands) Kokutou (brown sugar), which are made from eight islands of Okinawa. Just like coffee beans taste different from country to country, brown sugar tastes subtly different from island to island. "
He found it is also fun to serve this combination to his customers.”
He kindly told me this product under consideration.
It is highly likely you will encounter scenes where strangers sit next to each other while traveling in the market and end up friendly exchanging information. Maybe it is because the special kind of atmosphere of the market makes people friendly to each other.
Please enjoy the communication at the 2.5 tsubo space during your trip.
THE COFFEE STAND
Address: 2-11-11 104, Matsuo, Naha-shi, Okinawa
Hours: 10:00 to 19:00
Open 365 days a year
Okinawa CLIP Photo Writer Osamu Miyajima