Spring ’09 in NYC

It’s been another whirlwind month in the world of Anne and Neil. More coffee shops, more events, more fun!

The Scene When Peter talks…

Peter G Party people listen.

First, we were lucky enough to attend Peter Guiliano’s “State of the Harvest” address this year. I missed it for some lame reason last year, so I was happy to join the crowd at Everyman Espresso as we met and gathered ’round to hear the state of specialty coffee around the globe. I thought some highlights of the talk were:

– an introduction to Kenya’s new 2nd Window system, which will provide more access to Kenyan coffee, and more information about farms and terrior of kenyan coffees in particular (as was previously Twittered, Peter G. declares this year “the year of the Kenyan”)

– Counter Culture is going to begin offering a Single Origin French Roast, from the farm of Roberto Salazar. Peter spoke very highly of Salazar’s coffees, saying that while they perhaps hid behind the spotlight of Marysabel Caballero’s Finca El Puente, they consitently have delivered a steady, respectable product that had always been a regular part of Counter Culture’s blend or heavier roast offerings. This year they’ve decided to highlight this coffee and serve it on its on in the french roast – which I think is an interesting idea, one that either is new or is being resuscitated from the first days of specialty coffee.

– and of course, Peter talked about the state of affairs in Ethiopia. Since his talk things have changed again (as you can see from the strikethroughs in the article linked again), but at the time it was feared that coffee was all going to be blended together to create “Ethiopian” coffee… so much for single origins and a focus on specific farms, lots, or microlots. As far as I’m concerned it seems the state of coffee exports from Ethiopia is still up in the air. And that poor coffee is sitting in containers somewhere…

We love whenever we get a chance to hear him speak about coffee, so having Peter in town was a great treat. But that’s not all that’s been happening.

I’ve visited Lucky Shot and its neighbor The Brooklyn Standard, two new shops to open in Greenpoint. Lucky Shot is the latest creation from the owner of Variety in Williamsburg. The Standard, owned by once-Portlander Cody, has been getting some serious press already (probably his work with Brooklyn Label has helped his cred).

Lucky Shot Greenpoint Variety Cupping
Lucky Shot, cupping at Variety.

In Brooklyn, The owners of Frankies Spuntino went ahead and outdid themselves by opening two cafes this month, one of which we were lucky enough to temp at during the first days of its existence. Our friend Alie is now head-barista-boss-lady at The Cafe Pedlar, and I got to spend some time with our friend Jane at Frankies while working at Prime Meats, a German-themed lounge/eatery (that also serves Stumptown coffee to the otherwise coffee-deprived neighborhood). I will be back for the delicious sounding cocktails and Road-to-Epiphany tested pretzels (result: also delicious). Here are some shots of both:

Prime Meats Prime Meats
Prime Meats

Cafe PEdlar
The Pedlar

Also Bob Garver stopped into town and we hit about eight shops, talking the whole time about customer service, cappuccinos, and the pains of opening his cafe, The Bard, which will be “The” coffee place in Portland Maine (we hope). It was a swell, over caffinated day. Bob – please leave a link to your website or your info in the comments, some of our readers have been asking!

Alex & Aaron at Ost IMG_5366
Talking to Aaron & Alex about French Press for retail. Peter Demos’ latte art.

Finally, I just finished teaching month two of TampCamp, which was great, and will merit its own post!

And all this just before Anne jets off to Atlanta next week for her Expo duties (I’ll be a volunteer in several classes and I am a barista buddy for two national champions… And I’m still homeless for two nights of my stay. Clearly, that whole affair will merit several more posts). See all my barista partners-in-arms soon!

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~ by Anne on April 11, 2009.

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