Edward Basse will be a familiar name on this blog in the coming weeks as he offers dispatches from the Philippines, where he’ll be based for the next few months. We caught up with him before he left at Seattle’s historic Panama Hotel Tea & Coffee House.
What’s your role in Kalsada?
I’m the Chief Compliance Officer. I basically make sure that, at the end of the day, Kalsada does what it says. This means making sure that our product and operations are in line with our commitment to fairness and quality through internal auditing procedures, establishing relationships with regulatory agencies, and working with independent compliance organizations.
How and why did you get involved with Kalsada?
I guess I’ve been around for quite a while — I was one of the people with whom Carmel would enthusiastically envision this idea for a coffee space in the Philippines.
Although her idea was on my mind the last couple years, things didn’t really pick up until the fall of 2012. I was in Seattle for a few weeks and casually mentioned to Carmel (over a cup of coffee) that I had done work with farming co-operatives in Southern Laos the year before. Although she was animated by this new information, the ball did not begin rolling until January 2013, when she and I decided to move forward with the project.
What are some of your goals for Kalsada in the Philippines?
Personally, I’d like to see Kalsada help take the lead in organizing with other similarly-minded organizations and non-profits in pressing the development of artisanal coffee in the country. As an avid traveler, I’d also like to see Kalsada featured as a destination in various guidebooks!
What do you see Kalsada doing a year from now?
I see Kalsada as the place to go for good coffee and good tunes in Manila. Full stop.
What’s your favorite coffee shop?
The best cup of coffee I’ve had was probably in Utrecht’s Brandmeesters. I’m also a big fan of Tokyo’s Omotesando and Cafe Besalu, in Seattle’s Fremont district.
Photos by Toryan Dixon