Erna Knutsen, longtime coffee trader, dies at 97

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Erna Knutsen

She could also be very odd.

After telling me that our coffee was one of the finest she had come to know at the SCAA exhibition in Long Beach she invited me to dinner at her and John's appartment in San Francisco. Ignoring me throughout the meal, when the subject turned to my coffee she proceeded to rubbish it saying it was nothing special. Bizarre to say the least.

As to the best coffee in the world? Well that title belongs to Alto Grande in Puerto Rico (with apologies to Jaime and Susan at Yauco Selecto). Curiously enough, our coffee grows as far South of the equator as Alto Grande's does North. Draw your own conclusions!

I recall asking Erna what she thought was the best coffee in the world, and her response was telling: "our palates move around the world.....but they all end up in East Africa" was her reply. Too true.

Richard Le Vieux - Farfell Coffee Estate, Mount Selinda, Zimbabwe

Richard Le Vieux 81 days ago

Erna Knutsen

I bought the 3rd & 5th coffee roasters that Mike Sivetz created back in the mid 1970's. Mike, as people who knew him would agree, was opinionated about coffee. He introduced me to Erma and said she had the only coffee beans worthy of roasting in his machines. Later my career took me to the iced tea business but the smell of freshly roasted coffee is still a favorite pleasure. Everything Mike and Erna taught me about quality carried with me throughout my life in coffee & tea.

Dan Schweiker-Retired Co-Founder China Mist Tea Co. 81 days ago

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