Hello again and Sorry Guys!
As you may or may not have seen, my absence on the net has been somewhat apparent. In the last three months I haven’t Blogged, TMC’d, Barista Exchanged, Flickr’d or Facebooked to any great extent. Have I fallen of the earth? Well, you’d be excused for thinking that but I am in fact alive and well if not a little tired and stressed. The climax of the Rugby season, the tax year end, a UKBC hangover and the acquisition of an XBox 360 all contributed to the to my lack of bloggage. Also, thinking back, I didn’t actually have anything of interest to blog about, probably a good job I didn’t.
I blog today baring news of a mini success in the UK Latte Art Championship. Cafe Culture 08 was on last week at Olympia in London, an excuse for a holiday down to see my ever patient girlfriend and a chance to compete in some competition, glutton for punishment I Know. More than anything it was a chance to meet up with all the guys I’d had the pleasure of spending the few months before UKBC stressing with. I wasn’t intending to attend but I had a last minute e-mail badgering me from Paul ‘Squeaky’ Meikle-Janney.
It was nice to see Hugo (current UKBC Champ) on the La Spazialestand pumping out espresso to the masses for the two days. I also finally met up with the ‘Dirty Makem’ Steve from Hasbean who I’m amazed I hadn’t met sooner than now. I do love these sorts of event, there is defiantly a bit of a barista scene developing and I had a lot of support from like minded coffee geeks and barista buddies in the comps.
Back to my mini success, which to be honest I’m a little embarrassed about. The competition in the preparation room was of a great standard and there were some fantastic rosetti being poured, myself included, this didn’t translate to the stage very well at all and I think I only saw 5 rosetti poured, 4 of which were Phil from Origin’s who won the Comp. This was the first competition of this type that I’d entered and I think there was very little competitive experience on show. I buckled under the eyes of about 70 of my peers and almost threw my cappuccinos away after my first pour, decided against it as time is so tight and bashed out some solid hearts on my machiattos. I had I hurriedly prepared a triple heart cyclical etch in the prep room which seemed to go down well with the crowd. I sculked off the stage my head down, so disappointed. Why can I pour so well on my bar but then as soon as I’m on a stage collapse so dramatically. Luckily everone else had done the same if not worse and I ended up coming second equal with a girl called Estelle, who was really nice.
The second day saw me take on some cuppersin the Cupping Championship. I love this event. Its like fast drinking penalty shootout. I was gutted when I was drawn against the World Barista Champion James ‘The Hoff’ Hoffmann who was nipping in and out of seminars to compete. I lost 5-4 tasting some fantastic coffees from Steve at Hasbean. James went on to beat Se Gorman of Cafe Krem and Guy from Green Mountain coffee in the final and will represent the UK in Copenhagen.
This week I will be mostly preparing training material, and trying to make the most of my competition results this year with promo material for Pumphreys.
Great to see you again Tristan, Hugo, James, Steve, Will, John, Helen, Matt, Lance, Se and Norton.
Ohh it was nice to get that out, the blogging bug is back!!!!!