Sunday, February 26, 2012

Coffee Talk ...

I went back to my sanctuary in Ayer Itam just so that I could type this entry. Hahaha .... had been quite excited lately because 2 of my special projects had moved on to the next level. One of it has got something to do with coffee.

Let me start first by explaining what inspires it. Among the tourism industry players, I am much closer or much in tune with the tourist guides in Penang, especially the more senior ones. Though they can be sooooooo vocal, but one assignment in 2010 brought us closer together, in a sense that, both organisations later understood each others job better. Well, it's human nature ... no one wants to admit they are wrong or weak kan????? Myself included.

But I learned something from that assignment as well. To introduce or to get people to trust in the product, we have to go through many trials and errors (try and error). It is always chicken and egg story. Many tourists guides in Penang complained to me that the tour packages offered by their 'towkey" (travel agency) were not interesting or creative enough. But talked to travel agents they said the products (attractions) and facilities were not interesting enough or the not enough facilities (or tourist guides demand so much). Talked to the attraction owners they said ... travel agents not bringing enough tourists to their place so how are they going to upgrade or maintain it. So get my point?

Therefore I decided to focus on Free Independent Travellers (FIT) and domestic tourists/ excursionists as a catalyst for these tourist attractions. If travel agencies and tourist guides giving me so much problems, better focus my energy to FIT. Having said that the attractions or products must also be wel-maintained, good and unique enough to attract tourists. Some places, I noticed ... truly under-promoted, unnoticed or in a dire need of fresh coat of paint. Budget Travellers Guide to Georgetown and Discover Autocity Juru program confirmed that. Lack of signboards, attraction owners were not commercially inclined (some people do it for passion or hobby - no intention to make it big) ... and some deserved to be repackage.

So when Vincent asked for my approval to do the Coffee Trail for our Penang Bloggers ... I asked him, "Just bring them to visit kopitiams is it?" He shrugged ... "Yeah?" Automatic some wild ideas crept into my already "wild" thinking hahaha ... yes, my mind is like a jungle now, so many ideas (and wildest imaginations, unhibited)... stored haphazardly!

I explained to him ... coffee is not just for drinking ... we can even use it for cooking and beauty. Let's explore more about coffee. So that day, Vincent, myself and KK had a wild brainstorming on this Coffee project. So finally yesterday, myself and Vincent came out with an itnerary - each with a special Coffee theme.

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Drink coffee - savour the traditional Penang kopitiam black coffee (kopi-O) with traditional toasted bread (u know the one still using the charcoal oven)

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Eat coffee - savour the taste of Coffee Chicken Chop or Oriental Coffee Chicken wash down with Vanilla ice-cream in coffee syrup.

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Beauty coffee - give your body a good polish with the Coffee Body Scrub.

Make coffee - learn how to make good cup of coffee and some of well known coffee treats - cappucino, expresso, machiato, latte etc.

Blend coffee - blend your own coffee from selected coffee beans.
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Gift coffee - Penang Coffee is great as a gift.

To be honest, last Friday ... I spent the whole day evaluating the coffee products and places. Sampai i mabuk coffee. Pening ... pening ... too much of coffee indulgence! Will update on this after 11 March 2012 ... stay tune!
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