{chiang mai} akha ama coffee

10:23 AM Sian Mei Yeoh 0 Comments

a short entry. 

work and class have gotten a tad busy these days. 

a short entry but manage i will ;)

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just as ristr8to has captured the attention of coffee enthusiasts in chiang mai, akha ama coffee has similarly garnered the same love and recognition for its caffeine beverages. 

my initial reasons were mainly because of the location of the cafe, its ambiance and of course, its cup of brew.

however, these were overshadowed after a quick read about akha ama's origins and its reasons - the cafe's founder, lee ayu sources coffee beans from local farmers in his village and neighboring communities who practice sustainable organic farming and fair trade while bringing that local coffee beans into the thriving local caffeine scene in chiang mai.  loosely described, it almost resembles the farm-to-table concept, supporting the local farmers and bringing the freshest coffee beans for coffee lovers in the northern city of thailand.

i never quite understood its slogan of "socially empowered enterprise" until now and lee's efforts were recognized when their beans have been selected by the speciality coffee association of europe (scae) for the world cup tasters championship in 2010, 2011 and 2012.

the sun was unbearably hot, to the point it felt scorching that i quickly sought shelter at akha ama cafe by one of the busiest and oldest wats in chiang mai, wat para singh.

the petite shop was not as bustling as ristr8to. it took a very minimalist rustic approach in its decor - adorning the typical cafe industrial theme, keeping it simple with cement walls with occasional red bricks and accented by wood logs. i enjoyed the hand drawn arts of the essentials behind a cup of brew on the wall of chalkboard which added a little charm to the cafe's personality. mellow songs played in the background but were contrasted by the occasional screech of the espresso machine.

i ordered at the counter and picked a seat at the high table where i could watch the barista work his magic behind the counter. best of all, i had a front row seat to enjoy watching chiang mai just go by along its daily routine - uninterrupted.

espresso :: mocha (thb 550)

i looked at the latte art on my mocha in amusement - how fitting that it reflected my love that has grown for the city as my vacation in chiang mai was nearing the end. 

i sipped the cacao-coffee beverage while people watching, quickly noting the lovely flavors of the espresso. the espresso was full-bodied and smooth to the taste accentuated by the creamy milk where the various flavor notes ended with a tart finish, paired with the lip smacking bitterness. 

the cacao half was too subtle and left me wondering "where has the chocolate flavor gone to?". its lack of balance in the cacao - coffee ratio had this cup inclined towards the latte instead of a mocha. despite that, it was still an enjoyable cuppa. 

oh! and the people watching?

i found it absolutely endearing and amusing, even as of the many walks of life, tourists and locals including monks moved at their own pace towards their next destination. add into the equation the songthaews, 'tuk tuks' and motorbikes that whizzed by quickly, occasionally stopping by the side of the street to pick up passengers. it was oddly calming and found it almost meditative.  

akha ama coffee la fattoria was an unforgettable experience that i never expected to have enjoyed this immensely.  definitely one of my favorite things to do while i was in chiang mai (read more here).  this was when i finally slowed down to savor my vacation with every sipful of coffee while people watching to recharge myself mentally and emotionally. just lovely.

akha ama coffee la fattoria | location
175/1 rachdhamnoen rd,
phrasingha, muaeng,
chiang mai thailand
{opens mon-sat : 8am - 6pm
opens sun : 8am - 8pm}

disclaimer this is written based on personal experience and opinion. experiences and taste buds may vary for others.