Civet, civet good

Amy and Thomas Rhodes, owners of Zeke's Coffee, hold up a preserved feces sample from the civet. (Baltimore Sun photo/Algernina Perna / January 13, 2008)

Kopi Luwak is back. After a one-year break, Zeke's Coffee will once again present a tasting of the prized coffee, one of the most expensive in the world. At the Zeke's event, you'll pay $10 for a ten-ounce cup.

Kopi Luwak is, by most accounts, including that of Zeke's production manager Ryan Schmidt, a smooth and rich cup of coffee, but Kopi Luwak is known not only for its incredible flavor and low acidity, but also for its production process. In Indonesia, the Kopi Luwak bean is harvested from the droppings of the Asian palm civet, a small mammal. The civets eat ripe coffee berries and leave the beans undigested, ready for roasting and brewing.

This year, the Kopi Luwak tasting is being held at the coffee roasters' production facility on Montebello Terrace in Beverly Hills. Tickets can be purchased on Zeke's website. When you go to buy a ticket,  you'll be choosing a one-hour session at the roastery, where you can see the production facility in action and hang out with the Zeke's crew while you sip on your Kopi Luwak. The hour-long Kopi Luwak tastings are scheduled to begin every hour on the hour on Saturday, Jan. 14 and Sunday, Jan. 15, beginning at 8 a.m. The last session each day begins at 12 noon. Tickets are also available for purchase at Zeke's retail store at 4607 Harford Road.

Meanwhile, across town, Lamill Coffee, the first-floor cafe in the Four Seasons Hotel Baltimore, will be hosting a four-week series of free Saturday morning coffee clinics in January. The free, weekly sessions will highlight coffee extraction methods and coffee roasts. The Lamill team will sample food pairings with the coffee.

Lamill is Michael Mina's collaboration with a super-cool Los Angeles-area coffee roaster and retailer. The clinics will introduce guests to the ingenious Hario V60 hand-drip process from Japan and the super sleep Eva Solo from Denmark. Some of the coffee devices Lamill uses in its Four Seasons location look like something right out of Ten Forward.

Each session will show off one of Lamill's single-estate or otherwise rare roasts like Kenya Gethumbwini and Panama Birdsong Honey. The staff will pair the coffees with sweet and savory treats like hand-cut beignets with Meyer lemon-curd sauce and Nutella, chocolate and sea salt pop pies.