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Reports From the Road
Day 2: SCAA 2004 Hotlanta, Baybee!
Author: Mark Prince
Posted: April 24, 2004
Article rating: 9.2
feedback: (18) comments | read | write
End of day (start of day) photos
Posted by Mark Prince, 9:55pm Permalink to this blog entry

These ones are a bit late, but here we go!

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Ribbon Cutting Ceremony
Chop it up and let us in already!
The crowd.
Cool. No more security guards telling you where you can't go.
Bodum's new thing
Bodum's new espresso machine. how's it brew? Who knows?
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Elektra's Barlume in a new colour.
Grinder Colours
Baratza's got their grinder in a couple of new colours.
Nikki Schultz of JJ Bean shows shot problems in the espresso lab.
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The espresso lab folks were very much into the training.
Bronwen Serna
Bronwen lead her own microgroup in the training session.
Hands on
Hands on training. I was in heaven - a big room with a dozen 3 group La Marzoccos
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Pavoni's Wares
Pavoni's got a couple of "new for 2004" machine at the EG & H Booth.
And the old ones
The old ones are still popular with many consumers.
La Spaziale S1
The S1 in its shipping format - a dual boiler, 110V, 15amp / 20 amp machine.
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Looks like CoffeeGeek may FINALLY be reviewing the technovorms.
The Technivorms may look a bit strange but they sure do brew nicely.
Mini Technivorms
This is a smaller brewer, does about 750mls or so.
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Reneka's back
The Reneka Techno is back. I wrote a bit about it in yesterday;s update, it's 110V.
Uh oh.
One thing I don't like about the model - no steam knob. You have to do all or nothing steam.
In Black
The machine's going to be available in this black colour.
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Bunn Answers Melitta
Bunn's answer to Melitta's One brewer - another proprietary pod machine.
Lisa at Monin
The head food culinary expert at Monin, making a signature drink.
George Sabados
George, up close and personal :)
Day One Afterthoughts.
Posted by Mark Prince, 10:25pm Permalink to this blog entry

This is actually a very late last update for Day 1. I had a busy evening; it started off with a visit to the CoffeeKids reception where we saw a very powerful and provoking slideshow and some discussion from CoffeeKids folks about what's been going on for the past year and where CoffeeKids is going.

There was a lot of talk about something called "La Quinta" (I'm not sure if I got the spelling of that right)... it was a large meeting of people, mainly coffee women from various Central American countries to discuss their trade and where things were going. Bill Fishbein spoke about this and it was very moving.

I saw a lot of familiar faces at the reception. Mark Pendergast was there (the author of Uncommon Grounds, a novel / historical look at coffee). He told me about a new project he has going on - his new book which will be about the world of epidemic "forensic" doctors - think CSI, but for doctors and scientists who go to extremes to combat infectious diseases.

Kimberly Easson, the chairperson of the Consumer Marketing Committee was there, as were many other fine folks. I finally met Chipper Harris of CoffeeKids, and for about a half hour, I had almost dozens of people come up to me and talk about how great it was that we raised so much money for CoffeeKids over Christmas. I was getting a bit uncomfortable about it all, so I left, soon after.

I met up with Trish Skeie (again, I hope I got the spelling right) outside, and we walked back to my hotel for some cocktails. Trish is brilliant in the world of coffee and espresso, and is involved with the World Barista Championships. We had a very engaging and fun (and geeky beyond extreme) talk about the finer points of espresso. Trish believes, with much merit, that some single origins can be a great espresso - because she examines espresso in a different mindset than I do.

I on the other hand... well, I'm stubborn. I only think one bean can cut it as a single varietal espresso - Yemen (because yemen is usually pretty mixed and diverse in the bag).

I really wished I could chat with Trish all evening (and I must make it a mission to chat with her more often), but I had another fun event planned - dinner with John Neate, Nikki Schultz, and Angie Lof. Always a great time, I gotta tell you - John's a wealth of information, and I was also dining with two of the best Baristi from Vancouver. The talk, of course, was mainly coffee.

Afterwards, we found a Caribou Coffee location, and we wanted to give it a try. The interior was nice, but lemme tell you, the drinks sure weren’t.

What was weird was, there were two people behind the bar. The guy on till seemed to know his stuff - really know his stuff. We talked to him about coffee origins, espresso, etc. But the guy manning the bar? An automaton who couldn't build drinks if his life depended on it. Nikki and Angie ordered a macchiato, and it was served to them AS a very bad macchiato (more like a dry cappuccino), in a 14 ounce mug. That's right - they got a 3.5 oz drink in a 14 oz mug.

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Dinner partners
Angie Lof, John Neate, and Nikki Schultz having drinks with me before din din
This is a full drink
This is how Angie was served her "macchiato" at Caribou.
Come on Angie!
Drink it! Drink it!!!

But, we stayed in the shop for over an hour, again discussing coffee. I love and live for that at times... as I did tonight.

I headed back to my hotel room and hooked up with Amanda Wilson ever so briefly. She's the contest winner in the Free Hotel Room and Show Pass writing contest we had. 1st Line Equipment was the sponsor of this event, and Amanda's on the hunt for Jim from 1st Line to thank him in person. And I've already mentioned this, but I'm staying in a posh suite too, thanks to 1st Line, so in many ways, that company is bringing these reports to you. Thanks Jim!

More later on today. It's an action packed day for sure, and I'm judging in the semi-finals of the USBC.

Demystifying Coffee for your Consumers
Posted by Mark Prince, 7:10am Permalink to this blog entry
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I was sitting in the Demystifying Coffee for your Consumers, and caught Geoff Watts talking about seed to cup. By the time I got into the room, he was covering the last bit of the farmer's responsbility to the bean, and then went into depth on roasting, and how to explain this well to your consumers.

I liked one quip... "You have consumers who are more than willing to spend $30 on a bottle of wine, and it's gone after three or four cups. But getting them to pay $15, $18 for some of the world's best, rarest coffees that can give them 24, 30 cups over a week, and it's like pulling teeth. It's time to change that mentality.


Here's an audio stream of some of Geoff's talk: Geoff .wav file, 1.4mb.

Women in Coffee
Posted by , 8:40am Permalink to this blog entry
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This morning I went to the Women in Coffee breakfast. I couldn't believe how packed it was. So many women who were interested in getting up early just to attend speeches, talk, and of course eat. One particularly interesting story was a woman from Rwanda, and the positive impact that coffee has had in her life. She recounted her experiences in her country's political conflicts and her difficult struggle for survival. Her determination to not only survive, but thrive, with her family led her to a growing operation that has had an uphill struggle, but positive. By the end of her speech, done with a translator, she received a standing ovation. The experience was very interesting and the women I spoke to were all very knowledgeable and willing to bond.

USBC Finalists
Posted by Mark Prince, 3:10pm Permalink to this blog entry

Your six Baristi finalists for tomorrow, just announced...

Bronwen Serna, Hines Public Market Coffee Inc, Seattle, WA
Phuong Tran, Lava Java, Ridgefield, WA
Kyle Larson, Zoka Coffee Roasters, Seattle, WA
Billy Wilson, Stumptown Coffee Roasters, Portland, OR
Heather Perry, Coffee Klatch, San Dimas, CA
Ryan Dennhardt, Barista's Daily Grinder, Kearney, NB

Congrats to all! More detailed photos later.

The Finalists

Day Two Photo roundup!
Posted by Mark Prince, 7:50pm Permalink to this blog entry

Day two photos, folks. Enjoy!

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La Marzoccos rule!
Love pullin' the shots on a La Marzocco
Jeanette Chan
Jeanette takes a breather from a high paced Sunday for her, including covering the women in coffee events.
Lever Machine
A lever consumer machine from the floor (Jeanette snapped photo, no id on the machine yet)
This machine has the same guts as a Pasquini
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I'm in heaven! :)
I'm lovin' the Ghirardelli sauces and chocolates. Good stuff!
Karen and Tiffany
Karen Foley (freelance writer) and Tiffany Howard (graphic designer) leaving the Congress Center
Billy Wilson
Gee, you'd think he made the finals or something... :)
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I gotta get by the CoffeeKids booth tomorrow - Jeanette snapped this photo.
A Wega Lyra, lookin' all shiny and stylin'.
Women's Coffee Alliance - they had a booth, they do good things - look for a feature article soon.
Tall Girl!
IS that Bronwen Serna, looking taller than John Sanders (left) and Kent Bakke (right)?
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George Howell
Another person I'm desparate to meet tomorrow - George Howell.
Terry Z
Terry Z of Espresso Parts Northwest
Cmembers Tour
Don Shoenholdt (blurred, blue suit) takes the CMembers on a tour of the show.
Barista Guild
They had a booth, they signed up dozens of Baristi. Rock on!
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Chris Davidson
Chris of Zoka mugs it up for the camera.
Dawna Hughes
Dawna Hughes of Cafe West working at the Isomac booth.
Holding Court
I had a bit of a minor, almost not there "shootout" with George Sabados (blue shirt)... but after he held court here. George is brilliant.
George, working a La Marzocco machine. The guy's in the upper echelon of espresso brilliance.
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My Macchiatos
I pulled a couple of macchiatos for George - he said, and I quote "this is the best Zoka Paladino (the bean used) I've ever had - brilliant work Mark". Made my day.
George and Michelle
George Sabados and Michelle Campbell await the announcement of the six finalists.
Bronwen Jumps
The first announced finalist, Bronwen Serna did a cartwheel, then ran towards Danny O'Neil (MC)...
and then jumped up into his arms! Man, was she happy!
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Phuong Tran
Phoung was the second announced finalist.
Billy Wilson
Billy was jacked, pumped and super happy to be the third announced finalist. He too jumped up on poor Danny O'Neil!
Heather Perry
Heather was the fourth announced, and man, was she amazingly happy (heck, so would I!)
Heather bows
She accepts the crowd's cheers!
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Ryan Dennhardt
Ryan was the fourth announced Barista, he rocked and rolled, and he's a happy guy! :)
He's congratulated by USBC reps.
Kyle Larson
Kyle of Zoka was the sixth (in no particular order) finalist announced. The crowd went nuts. He was surprisingly humble!
Insturator and Jeff
Insturator and Jeff Taylor go over the final judging details for tomorrow.
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Pick a number
The final six draw numbers out of a pitcher to see what order they go in tomorrow.
Billy holds up his number.
Ryan Dennhardt is representing the midwest (Nebraska) tomorrow.
Phuong and Bronwen
Two happy finalists smile for the camera.
Article rating: 9.2
Author: Mark Prince
Posted: April 24, 2004
feedback: (18) comments | read | write
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