SCAA Update
May 5, 2007, 10:09 pm
Filed under: coffee, life

Intelli party kicked ass.

Convention is boring.

New Intelli shirts are rad.

USBC is fun.

I made the semifinals.

Busy busy. More to come.


Why So Long, Glanville?
April 13, 2007, 4:20 pm
Filed under: coffee, life

Photo thanks to Tonx

Well I hope most of you viewing my blog are doing so through an RSS reader. I would hate to put the three of you through the trouble of checking back so often when I’m so terrible with the updates.

I recently took my first legitimate stab at competition at the Western Regionals and did alright. Second to the unbeatable and unbelievably good Heather Perry. Not bad.

But am I satisfied with second place? No way. I’m hoping to up the ante for the USBC, working on my techs and trying to perfect the elusive signature drink. Through this whole process the sig has definitely caused the most headaches, and I think the judges weren’t wowed by it in the Western, so more work at the drawing board!

This year should prove to be the toughest ever. Making the finals is going to require a seriously good score, probably in the 700’s with the new format. Are we ready?

Well, I’m excited to see y’all in Long Beach. The coffeebar is coming along but unfortunately won’t be up and running for the show, but there will plenty to keep y’all entertained.

‘Til then, a little wisdom from our friend the Pstam :

“In our life, we always have to make choice for some times”

Right you are sir. Right you are…..

December 5, 2006, 5:29 pm
Filed under: coffee, life

As is already being reported here and here, Tonx and I took a little trip out to NYC for the weekend, mainly to check out the new Grumpy space.

Its pretty bitchin’, as far as I can tell.

Y’all know the stats :

Ecco Reserve Espresso

Counter Culture Clovered coffees

2 Clovers and no drip coffee (everything made to order)

Synesso Cyncra three group

Two Roburs

Lots of training by ex-Vickie Daniel

Sweet Chelsea Location

It was an eye opener to be sure. Its really wonderful to watch the New York coffee scene mature so nicely. It reminds me of Portland when I first visited some years back, except without the whole planet-Stumptown-center-of-gravity thing.

The progress of great coffee in New York instead seems reliant on the good nature, ambition and optimism of its key figures. It was inspiring to witness some of that evolution firsthand.

Thank you to Mike White, Chris Owens, Daniel Humphries, Gabe Lucas, Chris and Caroline, Ken Nye, Bob Peyton, M’lissa and all others who played host to us this weekend. Just remember, I was probably drunk.

Greetings from L.A.
November 16, 2006, 3:34 pm
Filed under: coffee, life

As I have changed my home address, so has the blog.

Yes, I’ve relocated.

Some people may remember back in April my coffee-other-half Tonx and I both ended our relationships with Victrola. It was a sad day to be sure and I will always regard my time and the people there fondly.

So what does a down’n’out, freshly unemployed ex-barista do when faced with great uncertainty, such as “How’m I gonna afford food”?

He drops $1200 on a plane ticket to Charlotte to attend the SCAA’s annual trade conference the very next day.

It was well worth it, too. In many ways, the show was like a big group-hug with the coffee community. We slept on hotel couches, ate free meals at the parties, and generally mooched as much as we could. And it worked out great.

I met coffee luminaries like Doug Zell, Ric Rhinehart, Trish Skeie, Geoff Watts, Aleco Chigounis and others. I saw many of my old pals as well. It was a really wonderful time, and it served to refresh my faith in this “thing” – this pursuit of transcendent coffee.

A few really great job offers came out of it as well. Tonx and I were confronted with seemingly boundless opportunity, and one of the most difficult decisons ever.

So after much deliberation, we find ourselves in LA-LA-land, charged with the task of doing something compelling in one of the World’s most compelling cities.

There will be a coffeebar. There will be roasting. It will be ambitious.

Stay tuned….