If you’ve kept up with the Indonesian movie industry over the past few years, you’d be familiar with the box office phenomenon that is Filosofi Kopi (translated to the Philosophy of Coffee). Starring Chicco Jeriko and Rio Dewanto, the two movies gave audiences a front row seat to the fun, and sometimes frustrating task of running a coffee shop.
Well-made and entertaining, the two movies took inspiration from the very real Indonesian coffee craze that had swept the nation while simultaneously fanning the flames even hotter. Now, long after the movies have stopped showing in cinemas, Filosofi Kopi is still as relevant as ever, albeit for different reasons.
The Filosofi Kopi series did something movies rarely ever do – they broke the fourth wall in the most impressive way possible. Shortly after its release, the people behind the movie actually opened the shop depicted in the movie to the ravenous Jakatan masses. No props or special effects here – they serve real coffee. Wow, talk about an effective marketing scheme.
After the second movie was released, a second shop popped up in the student city of Jogja where the story was set. Unlike its sister shop, Filosofi Kopi Jogja sits a little further away from the epicenter of town in the peaceful suburb of Sleman. A far cry from the hustle and bustle of Melawai in Jakarta, here, time slows down to a snail’s pace and coffee is accompanied with the gentle rustle of trees rather than the blarring sound of motorcycles.
Much larger, Filosofi Kopi Jogja is set against the backdrop of traditional Javanese life – green and quaint with joglo’s (traditional Javanese houses) which dictate the look and feel of the shop. The cluster of joglo’s make for an airy and open space in which the never ending stream of university students can speed through assignments, and coffee hunters can kick back and relax.
If you’re one of those people who scour menus and the internet in search of whatever it is a movie character had to eat or drink, you’re in luck. The shop serves three coffees based of the series: Lestari, named after Dewi Lestari, the writer of the Filosofi Kopi book from which the first movie was based upon, Ben’s Perfecto, and Tiwus, the astounding single origin that pacified even nitpicker Ben.
Even though the characters of the Filosofi Kopi movies are fictional, they are very much rooted in reality – the coffee shops however are very real and have managed to worm their way into pop culture through both the silver screen and cappuccinos.
For the Indonesian film connoisseur, this is the chance to immerse yourself in movie magic, while for the coffee enthusiast, Filosofi Kopi Jogja is bound to delight with its fiction-turned-reality fare. If you happen to be both, even better. There’s nothing like a cup of coffee with character.