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Recipe for a great weekend in Bintan


  • 7 girlfriends (preferably 3 parts American, 3 parts French, 1 part English)
  • 1 super-sized villa 50 meters from the ocean
  • 1 stretch golf cart
  • sun, sand, surf
  • fruity drinks to taste


Have 1 lovely friend arrive in Singapore from Paris at 4pm. Board boat to Bintan from Tanamera Ferry Terminal at 8pm. Arrive 8:30pm. Clear immigration 9pm. Combine all remaining ingredients. Yields: 1 serving of weekend full of fun!


I’ll take a crappuccino please.  No no, actually make that a caffe laxte. And an iced crappe for the gentleman.

No scratch that. I’ll order the civet poop coffee.

taking a whiff

For real. I drank the civet poop coffee.

I’ll repeat: I drank coffee made from the beans that wild cat pooped.

Don’t judge. It was a damn good cup of coffee! The official beverage is called kopi luwak. You might have already heard of it if you watched The Bucket List with Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman.  It is the rarest, most expensive cup of coffee in the world.

Essentially a civet eats a coffee cherry, the coffee cherry spends a day and a half in the civet’s digestive track, and then the civet defecates a string of coffee beans. Some poor farmer then sorts through the poop (can you imagine that Monday morning back at work??), cleans the coffee beans, dries them in the sun, and then gives them a light roast.

At a whopping $27 SGD, this particular cup of kopi luwak was amazing.  It’s served black, and is actually the least bitter cup of black coffee I’ve ever tasted. I bet with a little cream and a hot, buttery croissant… yummm


You can find Kopi Luwak in Singapore at:

Blue Mountain Cafe.
313 Orchard Road,
313 @ Somerset, Singapore

Step 1: Book a flight to Bali. This should be sufficient. If not, continue to step 2.

Step 2: Find a villa in Seminyak. Ideally it will have a private pool and someone will come to make you breakfast in the morning. It will be cheap because you will have followed my advice on how to book a trip in SE Asia (see here).

Step 3: Capture your joy on film. If you need to pinch yourself, it’s okay.

Step 4: Rent a moto in Candidasa and start driving in the direction of nowhere. When you stop for gas and a Balinese man asks you if you are going to White Sand Beach, just tell him yes.

Step 5: Then figure out how to get to White Sand Beach. You’ll probably drive around lost for a few hours, and local ladies will point and laugh at you, but it’s worth it because the beach looks something like this:

Step 6: Find a little shack where someone will grill you fresh fish in spicy Balinese sauce. Eat it all and wash down with Pineapple juice.

Step 7: Afterwards take a walk in the sunset to digest the fish. This will all feel surreal, but that’s okay -just embrace it. You’ve now achieved happiness.

[If you’ve followed each step as directed, you might be SO happy that you’ll be able to walk on water (see above)].

December 2019
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