Last Week With Ben Blake: February 16th, 2013

Welcome to another edition of our weekly Saturday news magazine, “Last Week With Ben Blake”. Mr. Blake is Sprudge.com’s trusty news intern, and a world-traveling illustration genius. Check out Draw Coffee for more of Ben’s work.

Pressure + Flow on the Sunset StripThe folks at La Marzocco threw a Strada party at Siren Studios on the Sunset Strip this week. The event—Pressure + Flow LA—centered around LM’s Strada EP, and included a complete history of the machine. Apart from bragging on the Strada and showcasing some fantastic Atlas Coffees, the importance of water was explained by LM’s own Scott Guglielmino. Mr. Guglielmino compared and contrasted water from three different sources: Seattle water, Los Angeles water, and water dialed in to meet SCAA approved water specifications—showcasing just how important and different waters can be. Be on the look out for more Pressure + Flow events in the coming weeks, including venues in SF, Chicago, and NYC.

Safehouse ReopensIt’s been a long road back for the gang at Safehouse Coffee. Ever since the fire that devastated their Griffin, GA location just over a year ago, Safehouse has been busy raising funds (with the help of the rest of the specialty coffee industry), reconstructing their roof, and building out a brand-new coffee bar. We’ve been staying up to date with their progress, and we’re beyond thrilled to see that they’ve finally re-opened their doors. Congrats, guys! Go pay them a visit at your earliest convenience.

 

SCAA Selects TED BaristasThe SCAA has announced their lineup for the TED Conference (West Coast) featuring 38 of the brightest baristas in the World. Over the past few years, coffee has been a massive part of the TED Conference, and the education that comes with the entire event has made or the perfect place to educate about coffee. The baristas selected were chosen for good reason. More from Lily Kubota, Communications Specialist at SCAA:

“The baristas selected are Barista Guild of America members that were nominated by our TED Coffee Team and were vetted for their ability to not only make great coffee but have a high level of knowledge and exemplary customer service skills.”

See the complete list here—a huge congrats and thanks to all of you!

 

Coffee Rust on the Move in Latin America & BeyondAccording to experts, coffee farmers in Latin America can expect to lost up to 20% of their crops to Coffee Rust this year, with the number growing to as large as 40% next year. It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that losses this size could be absolutely devastating to the farmers, their families, and their livelihood. We’re not experts on the subject, but we put together a primer of sorts to help gather information for real experts in one place. There is work to be done—the worst thing we could do as an industry is to look away and simply find a new coffee. We’d like to encourage you to take a look at some of the work people who are on the ground and actively involved, then figure out how you, or your company, or whoever can get involved.

Sprudge News

Whew. It’s been another busy week at Sprudge HQ. Here are a few housekeeping items you may have missed this past week:

We welcomed our brand new Managing Spirits Director, Alex Negranza to the team.  Your Sprudge Editors and Mr. Negranza are currently hard at work with an able cast of gifted cohorts, building out a series of coffee and cocktail events throughout the 2013 calendar. You’re going to hear a lot more about these events as they draw closer, but trust us, we’re planning some very special stuff with some of the finest coffee bars in North America. Stay tuned.

We took a second to give our take on the whole Bitter Barista fiasco…

 And then gave you a glimpse of the hate mail we received because of the feature.

 

 

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