Visitors, Proverbial Red Carpets, and What Makes Specialty Coffee Great


May 19, 2008


OK, I had every intention of posting every day of training but yesterday we had some very special visitors drop by which foiled my plans. So instead of writing, Kyle and I rolled out the red carpet for our friends Chris Owens and M’lissa Muckerman (who people might recognize from the cover of the latest Barista Magazine). I shouldn’t forget our friend Tonx and Intelligentsia’s Nick Griffith as well as Russell, a new mate from Australia who is running a cafe in Sydney.


TonxThe crew

M'lissaKyle and Chris Owens




This was a great opportunity to do a run-through in front of some very experienced people. As it happens, Chris actually judged Kyle in the semi-finals of the USBC, so what better person than him to give some sound advice?


Now Kyle still has some bits and pieces missing from his routine (like some of the wood work that he is getting hand-made), so I asked the crew to really think about overall impressions rather then anything technical. We set up our camcorder on the tripod and with an imaginary red button Kyle started his run-through. 15 minutes later we all ripped in to him… in a constructive manner, of course.


We got some fantastic feedback from everyone involved, so I really want to give a big “thanks” to all who joined in! I really believe that this is what competition is about: sharing ideas and innovation and the coming together over coffee. I like to think that most of us are in the Specialty Coffee industry because our passion drives us and this was really the case today.


Today (Sunday) we are here again writing out Kyle’s speech, waiting for our dishwasher to wash all the wares. (It did not turn on last night for some strange reason.) So to inspire ourselves, we are listening to the 2006 WBC podcast on portifilter.net. Klaus Thomsen really nailed his performance with no hesitation, no um’s and er’s. I just wish I had of been there to witness it.


Thanks again to all who were here yesterday!




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