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Last Week With Ben Blake – Week of January 18th, 2...

Last Week With Ben Blake – Week of January 18th, 2014

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The Big Eastern Barista Championship is in full swing this weekend in Durham, NC—and while coffee professionals from all over the country participate in the festivities, we’ve got you covered here on Sprudge with all the latest coffee news and links.

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Big Eastern!

Sprudge is on site in Durham to bring you up-to-the-minute coverage of the Big Eastern Barista Competition, Brewer’s Cup, and any extracurricular activity you can think of. We’ve got a complete schedule of all events in Durham, as well as a complete list (including twitter handles) of competitors. Be sure to follow along with us on twitter by following @SprudgeLive!

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Southeast Brewer’s Cup Finalists

The Southeast Brewer’s Cup finalists have already been announced and we have all their info right here! Congrats, Brewers!

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Evernote’s Awesome Coffee Situation

Alex Bernson gave us a glimpse inside of the Evernote HQ in the Bay Area, adding to the list of drool-worthy office espresso situations. The space at Evernote has a beautiful La Marzocco Strada situated in an aesthetically-pleasing cafe setting, but you won’t find any trained baristas staffing the space—that’s because each Evernote Employee is trained on bar and spends an hour each week behind it. More from Mr. Bernson:

“The program started with the training of senior management, and has since been expanded to more employees. Each trained employee is scheduled for a one hour barista shift each week, between 9am and 2pm. Andrew Sinkov, Evernote’s VP of Marketing, says that these sessions have become a sort of “office hours”, a highly valued opportunity for staff to break the norm and interact with their coworkers in a more informal environment.”

(Photo: Eileen P. Kenny for Sprudge)

(Photo: Eileen P. Kenny for Sprudge)

Perger To Launch Site

Sprudge.com was the first to report the impending debut of Matt Perger Coffee (www.mattperger.com), a new eponymous web publication from two-time Australian Barista Champion, World Barista Championship silver medalist and World Brewers Cup champion Matthew Perger. We chatted with Mr. Perger about the site, which goes live next Monday, January 20th in North America, and Tuesday, January 21st in Australia.

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Coffee à la Française: Bordeaux & Burgundy Blends

Anna Brones took a look inside Parisian Coffee Spot Cafe Lomi—complete with a La Marzocco, Hario V60s, Chemexes, a vacuum pot, and more. The cafe/roaster is using the already existing French wine types in an attempt to communicate different coffee flavors and profiles. More from our coverage:

“We really want people to understand that there are different flavors in the blends… and we gave them wine references,” says Paturle. “A Bordeaux wine is going to be a very round wine… a good Burgundy is going to be lighter and more acidic.”

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A New Under-Counter Espresso Machine at Saint Frank

There’s been a lot of buzz about San Francisco’s recently opened Saint Frank Coffee—not only is the space stunningly beautiful, it has a hidden gem beneath the counter: The Ghost. Leif Haven interviewed St. Frank’s Kevin Bohlin and consultant Ben Kaminsky about the custom two-group espresso machine.

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Coffee Politics in Kenya

As coffees from Kenya’s main harvest are being readied for export, the governor of Nyeri, one of Kenya’s premiere coffee counties, is making sweeping changes to the way it trades its coffee. Governor Nderitu Gachagua has issued an order to mill and sell all of Nyeri’s coffee in Sagana, a town in the Kiryinyaga District, effectively shutting other mills down. This raises serious questions about the government’s motives and the potential for decreasing coffee traceability and quality. We have more information here.

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5 Excellent Cafes in Hong Kong

Albert Au took a look at the coffee scene in Hong Kong and rounded up 5 great cafes to visit. While the coffee culture in Hong Kong is relatively new, Mr. Au shows just how rapidly it’s growing. Add Hong Kong to your list of “World Cities to Go Coffee Touring.”

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Coffee’s Good Food Award-Winners

Six hundred attendees packed the Palace of Fine Arts Theatre in San Francisco on Thursday evening to honor food/drink purveyors in ten categories at the fourth annual Good Food Awards ceremony. The Good Food Awards celebrates and honors the best in sustainably sourced and produced foods and drinks – like pickles, chocolates, preserves, and charcuterie – from purveyors across the United States.

With a little extra encouragement from Sprudge.com, for the first time in the program’s history, all fifty states submitted coffee. Sprudge correspondent Kristen Orser-Crouse covered the panel of esteemed judges cupping and scoring the coffees in Novemberwhen 26 finalists were chosen. Congrats to all!

We compiled a list of all currently available coffees from the GFA winners—click through for some #deloshes coffee!

1000 Faces Coffee, Ethiopia Suke Quto, Georgia

De La Paz Coffee, Kenya Gichathaini & Peel Sessions, California

Flying Goat Coffee, Ethiopia Wote Konga, California

Intelligentsia Coffee, Organic Shegole Ethiopia, California

Kickapoo Coffee Roasters, Organic Ethiopian Yirgacheffe Idido, Wisconsin

Kuma Coffee, Kenya Kiamabara AA, Washington

Metropolis Coffee Company, Ethiopia Yirgacheffe Aylele, Illinois

Olympia Coffee Roasting Co., Ethiopia Konga, Washington

Panther Coffee, Ethiopia Chelba & Nicaragua Kailash, Florida

ReAnimator Coffee Roasters, Ethiopia Sota, Pennsylvania

Roast House, Batzchocola Guatemala, Washington

Sightglass Coffee Roasters, Ethiopia Guji Yetatebe, California

Square One Coffee, Guatemala Acatenango, Pennsylvania

Tandem Coffee Roasters, Aylele Yirgacheffe Ethiopia, Maine

Ben Blake (@DrawCoffee) is our weekly recapper / doodler. See more of Ben’s doodles over at DrawCoffee.com.

 


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