FHM2007 = Best Coffee Experience

I attended the Food and Hotel Exhibition at the KL Convention Centre last week.
Did not manage to get much photos. I was too engrossed with all the Coffee Specialist Exhibitors.

All the major coffee suppliers and distributors were there like Bon Cafe, Coffex, Dankoff, ETC Concept, Simplex Maju and some smaller players too. Most of them brought in the “heavy artillery”, meaning… high quality fresh roasted coffee and good barista.

In Malaysia (if you don’t already know), great coffee virtually don’t exist because of the lack of high quality fresh roasted coffee and good barista.

I have never had so many nice coffee in my life, apart from making them myself.

Unfortunately, some exhibitors came less than prepare. Or maybe they don’t expect the competition to be so fierce. I actually tried a few espresso from some “pathetic” companies offering horrible, under-extracted watery espresso. There’s a company promoting their “Elephant Beans”. Yes, the beans are BIG and tasted equally horrible.

Ok, on with the good stuff.

My first espresso, from Boncafe. Their baristas came from Singapore. What do you know? Not bad. But when I asked him how fresh is the beans, he gave me a puzzled look and fiddled with some pack coffee from the back. The pack says 3 months old. Actually the beans were quite fresh (I assume), because those on display in the front all shown to be about 2 weeks from roasting date.
Boncafe at FHM2007
BonCafe. They brought in their best for the show. Don’t expect fresh roasted coffee if you are trying to buy in a supermarket.

Next stop. Coffex.
Brought their barista from Australia. Again, I asked the barista about the freshness of his coffee. Again, not sure. Went fiddled with the coffee bag and told me in a very accented Australian English, 8 days. Had an espresso. Hey, even better than Boncafe. More pronounced and more complex. Tasted fine. I only wish that whenever I come across any food outlet that serves Coffex Coffee in the future will taste as good.

ETC for Home Machine.
Like I always mentioned, you want great coffee, do it yourselves. Here are the beautiful girls selling beautiful home machines.

Jade and Tracy

And here are the hardwares.

Gaggia Espresso Machines. The only brand worth your time currently that is available in the market that is accessible to consumers. Forget about those machine you often seen in Isetan, Metrojaya or Harvey Norman types of retailer. Those are toys in comparison.

I hope more suppliers will bring in other serious home espresso machines like Rancilio Silvia. Some supplier does offer to import specifically for you but the cost is really high. For now, if you are looking for home machines, ETC Concept is the place to go. They are located at the Curve.

Now.. my favourite:-

DanKoff Coffee Specialist

Their beans are roasted in Singapore. Their associates from Highlander Coffee brought over some high quality fresh roasted blend. Only 2 days from roasting. Makes excellent espresso and just as good for cappuccinos.

The espresso is the best I’ve tried. Smooth, pleasant acidity, detected some fruitiness, good body and a nice aftertaste.

Here is Boyd, the barista pulling a shot.

Here you see Jeffrey(left) and Phil(Center) from Highlander Coffee. These guys are passionate about coffee.

Here is Danny of DanKoff chating with some customer.

Thanks to Highlander Coffee (Phil, Cedric and Jeffrey) for bringing me some excellent fresh roasted coffee.


If you want to store coffee properly, put it in a vacuumed container and pump the air out. Then keep them in a cool, dark and dry place. You can store them for a week, at most 2. roasted coffee beans by they nature, continues to deteriorate. You cannot really stop that process. Regardless of how they are packed, you don’t call them fresh after 2 weeks.

Can’t wait to test them myself.



Tasted just as good. Well nothing can compare to high quality fresh roasted beans.
My poor attempt of a latte art on my cappuccino. Not very presentable but still tasted fine.

Can’t wait for the exhibition in 2 years time.

P.S: Need contact, reference and recommendations? Drop me a line or two.

50 thoughts on “FHM2007 = Best Coffee Experience

  1. kwazy berry

    wah… you are becoming quite a coffee connoisseur…

    there’s a coffee cafe chain here in pg that i don’t see in kl… u tried the place before? can’t actually recall its name.

  2. Linn

    Hi KFC,(hehe)

    It is really difficult to find a decent cuppa these days,I use to work as a Barista in Starbucks, Singapore during the great Astoria days. currently running a small family based hotel in Sandakan.Sabah.I’ve been on 3in1 ever since,its depressing..

    Anyways we are planning to transform our lobby into a boutique,library + cafe thing,Im looking for a Semi-professional machine with single group head,a decent grinder,and obviously some decent roast.Any recommendation/contacts?..I’ve tried Simplex Maju,their machines are way off our budget.


  3. Linn

    Simplex quoted me a La Marzocco which is the Gucci of machines for $17K and a Grimac for $9K. My budget is prolly somewhere near the $6K – $7Kmark. I think chances of having orders of 6capps at once are quite low. As long as it doest takes forever for steam wand to work after pulling shots, I think we’ll be fine. Any recommendation??

    Ps: thanks for the anti spam offer,I’ll get on it.. let u know if we need anything.

  4. kfchan Post author

    Dear Linn,

    RM 9K for the Grimac seems expensive. Your budget of RM6 to 7K is reasonable. Let me check it out for you.

  5. Linn


    thanks loads, your’e a life saver. Meanwhile whever your’e free pop by my blog.

  6. saicek

    Im runing a cafe at JB now.
    Rose Garden Cafe.
    Located at Danga Bay.
    Just Pick up about how 2 make a good espresso n all that.
    Is really hard 2 make a perfect cappuccino or cafe latte.
    yes. i can make a nice heart shape at cappuccino. But not every time.
    Need 2 pick up a bit.
    But latte are is really hard 4 me!
    when can i do my perfect latte art? As i wish. as my control!

  7. kfchan Post author

    Dear Saicek,

    Perhaps what you need is a proper Barista training. I will help you to perfect your skills. Sometimes, without proper feedback from experience people, and tips to improve, it is hard to reach the height of our potential.

  8. saicek

    Y that the etc-concept.com can not 1????
    Im looking 4a innova home use espresso machine.
    hard 2 get quotation!!!
    i got 1 quotation from barista.com
    I feel that still expansive 4 me.
    Coz i use it 4 a present 2 some 1!
    can u help me this???

  9. kfchan Post author

    Dear Saicek,

    The innova is all about the design.
    If you want to have a great home espresso machine, I strongly recommend either Gaggia range or Rancilio Silvia. These two are the best. Each have strong points over the other.

    What is your budget? I can ask around for you if you are a serious buyer. Are you thinking of getting a decent grinder too. My suggestions, don’t spend your money on the design of the innova. Save the money for a good grinder.

    Both Gaggia and Rancilio Silvia uses a commercial size 58mm portafilter. The innova (the few that I’ve seen) uses a smaller one.

    I think if you have total of 5K+ to invest, I can get you a great set of espresso machine + la scala M5 grinder.

    Let me stress, a good grinder is VERY VERY important to great coffee.

  10. kfchan Post author

    Dear Saicek,

    If you have budget constrain, I’m using a Gaggia Baby D. New one sells around RM 1960.00. I also know someone who wanted to sell the Gaggia Classic (1 year old) for RM 1500. This is a very good buy. If I had not buy the Baby, I will definitely take the Classic second hand.

    If you are really interested, I can get a la Scala M5 grinder for around RM 2000. Very good buy. It is an excellent grinder. Home usage, I think can last 10 years.

  11. sckwee

    Is there anywhere to buy Rancilio Silvia and Rocky in Malaysia? I have email to the Rancilio distributor in Malaysia for quotation but they have no longer stock the product. I think 5K it is too expensive for the espresso machine + grinder.

  12. kfchan Post author

    Dear sckwee,

    If you can afford RM4K, I think I can help you. Get a Gaggia Baby + M5. Just a note, the M5 grinder is much more superior than the Rocky. If all you have is RM2K, then read my latest post on My Story.

  13. Janglot


    From my understanding, La Scala M5 is a rebadge of Macap M5, just the grinder I’m looking for. Do you mind telling me where it can be bought in KL? Thanks is advance.

  14. Janglot

    to tllau,

    I’ve seen the saeco machines at barristacoffee in sunway. IMHO, these machines are rather poorly made considering the price and are always in the way of making a decent espresso. You only buy these machines for ease of use

  15. kfchan Post author

    Details on where to get the La Scala M5, I have sent to your email. You are right about those Saeco Super-Auto machine. Their purpose is for convenience. Want to make nice cappuccino with velvety microfoamed milk.. very difficult.

    But if I want to get a machine for the use in office, I’ll get a super-auto. Who want to mess with a real espresso machine during working hours unless you work as a barista 🙂

  16. Airshot

    Hey kfchan, do you still have that contact who is wanting to sell the Gaggia Classic? If you do, could you please email me with the details?


  17. kfchan Post author

    Hi there,

    I will try and find his contact. But are you really serious? The selling price is RM 1500.00

    Please give me your name and contact number? When I look for the seller, I cannot appear blur-blur.

    KF Chan

  18. Airshot

    My apologies – I have corrected my email reference and you should be able to reach me now by email.

  19. Charles

    Hi there,

    Thanks for all these informative postings. I love a good cup of coffee however do not dare to claim that I am an expert in brewing preparation nor the types of coffee. Just know a good cup of coffee when I taste one.

    Anyway my question to you is, with my budget of RM1500-RM1700 where can I get a good, durable, coffee brewer with grinder functions. And what coffee beans would you recommend and where I can find them? Is it at the ETC that you have mentioned?

    Thanks much in advance.

  20. kfchan Post author

    Dear Charles,

    Sorry for the slow reply. Do read up my posting on the story of my machine and grinder: https://kfchan.wordpress.com/2008/01/01/my-story-of-the-espresso-machine-and-grinder-part-1/

    Then consider your requirements and willingness to spend effort in making a good cup.

    1. If you want convenient and a good cup, all you need is a low-end burr grinder (Not blade grinder) like the MM Gaggia (RM 495) from ETC, a french press and fresh roasted coffee. Less than RM 600.

    Please note that if you want to make espresso, it will never be convenient. It require effort, learning curve and mess. I have cut down my time to make 2 cups of cappuccino from preparation to cleaning up…fastest 15 minutes.

    2. If you can make effort and an excellent cup of coffee… that’s a different story. Buy the cheapest espresso machine from ETC. (I understand that they are having stock problem, currently out of stocks). Their cheapest espresso machine that can still make excellent espresso is around RM 1200, so add another RM 495 for the MM Gaggia Grinder, it will be within your budget. For fresh roasted coffee, get from me 🙂

    Note: Forget about those Delonghi and Krup from the shopping malls.

  21. jedyoong

    wow. i like the home one the best…i love coffee too….the etc machines look colourful, hope they are good too 😉

  22. Eusuff Noh

    Hi KFChan,
    Just got back from London. I”m planning to open up a cafe soon. Will appreciate if you could help me in getting the right equipment and accessories which is really reliable and for commercial use. Thanks

  23. kfchan Post author

    Dear Eusuff,

    Hey, drop me your contact and I will give you a call. My email address is kfchan7 (at) gmail (dot) com
    Where is your location? KL?

    Best to meet up for a quick intro.

  24. judy teo

    hi i am interested to set up a small coffee cafe to be located in a supermarket. would appreciated if u can let me know which type of reasonable machine i shld use to make good coffee and what type of beans to use..i am new in this business

  25. Fadzli

    Hi kfchan,

    I very interested with this yours blog forum… 🙂

    Anyway, i found out one newbie cafe at Plaza Damas, Le Passione Cafe and their serve coffee from Tristot Coffee ( Tiziano 1919 ) anyone want try it? i’ve already tried their cafe latte… mmm… not bad… ( on price and taste ) but i think its not 100% arabica beans… how about yours ?

  26. Kamesh

    I am an MBA student from India doing a project on Cafes in Malaysia. I tried looking for Starbucks prices (in Malaysia) on the internet, but could not come up with actual prices. I would very much thankful, if you can let me know the price of a starbucks product in Malaysia – for instance the ‘tall’ latte or cappuccino.


  27. Hilsy


    What do you guys think about the Pasquini Moka90 grinder? Is it available in KL? If yes please let me know where i can get it and the price.

    Thanks a lot.


  28. Pingback: FHM 2009 – My Favourite Event of the year « Coffee in Malaysia

  29. eff

    can u tell me a wholesale supplier of company & add
    please contact me 012-2653445 so we can meet up and have a chat

  30. Wee Chuan

    Hi Hilsy,

    So far I have never heard of any coffee machine distributor is carrying Pasquini Moka. But there are very good grinders like Mazzer and Macap that can be easily available here in Malaysia.

  31. hyperon

    Hi Wee Chuan,

    What is the source of the Mazzer grinders in Malaysia? I’ve asked around without success. Finally bought a Macap from Singapore.

  32. kfchan Post author

    Dear Hyperon,

    Should have asked me. I am also selling the Mazzer Mini.
    Anyway, I am also using the Macap. It is as good as the Mazzer mini. Both are quite equal.

  33. Kiew KK

    Hi KF,
    im mr.kiew from parkcity mall bintulu sarawak. just want to check with u whether u are interesting in external Coffee outlet or get involved with a strategic partnership. JV with us etc Do u supply the coffee machine? i added u in facebook, mayb v can talk further there

  34. Mitchel

    Excellent blog here! Also your web site loads
    up very fast! What web host are you using? Can
    I get your affiliate link to your host? I wish my
    website loaded up as fast as yours lol

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