Hi guys, apologies for the glitch over the last couple of days; wishing you a happy New Year.
Also thought I should (for the record) post the results of the World Barista Champs 2017 below; we don't follow it much any more - too many events and a little too commercialised - but congrats to the finalists, as it certainly takes a lot of work to get there :-
1 DALE HARRIS : UNITED KINGDOM (Hasbean Coffee)
2 MIKI SUZUKI : JAPAN (Maruyama Coffee)
3 KAPO CHIU : HONG KONG (Cupping Room Coffee Roasters)
4 BEN PUT : CANADA (Monogram Coffee)
5 HUGH KELLY : AUSTRALIA (ONA Coffee)
6 KYLE RAMAGE : UNITED STATES (Black & White Coffee)
Happy New Year all!
Yeah I absolutely love the comps... I know everyone's not a fan, but the way they explore and push the boundaries is truly exciting and inspiring. Yeah the amount of work, research and practice each competitor goes through is staggering... I can't help but have tremendous respect and admiration for them. It's certainly not just a matter of 'buying the most expensive coffee'.
I've watched Dale, Miki, and Hugh's runs and they've really taken it to a whole new level...
Dale leaving all his info until the very end, focusing totally on sensory experience and flavour.
Miki adding liquid nitrogen to beans before grinding, and doing double grinding to increase surface area.
Hugh putting whole cherries in sealed containers, pressurising them to bring out clarity of certain flavours, freezing his doses on dry ice before grinding to get consistent particle sizes, cooled cups, 16.5g dose stretched to 51g. Also using different steaming process to avoid water diluting it.
To me it's so refreshing and amazing what these guys are showing can be done with coffee. Obviously it's hard to recreate a lot of this for the average cafe barista hehe but I don't think it's catering to that. It's pushing the development and understanding of coffee, and most importantly experimenting outside the norms of convention. Definitely inspires me to explore and experiment more