look, there is a lot going on here. everyone is in town. my cousin is driving cookies over to the convention center for us. there are a lot of places to get coffee in this town (not including out of the competitors’ bustray). highlights in brief from the first day and a half:


sara peterson from the abbey instructed the judges to take a “microsip” of her espresso…went slightly over time (but where?! i didn’t even see where she lost speed) despite a gorgeous performance and excellent verve espresso…mike phillips much smoother this time with his split-shot signature drink…michael elvin KILLED IT out there, despite disappointing me by not competing in his ten-gallon (tech judges?) hat, serving up olympia coffee roasters’ Big Truck espresso and featuring a sig drink meant to taste like cola, and, beautifully constructed, it totally did…al liu introduced me to a colombian man as the administrator of “twitchy punta org”…meanwhile the convention hall next door to us is featuring a scrapbooking convention, and believe you me it’s hard to keep ryan willbur and devin pedde focused on the barista competition…ryan knapp!!jared truby killed it also, cappuccinos stolen off the bus tray rivalled only by justin teisl‘s idido misty valley, so help us lord…i cut out after colin whitcomb and watched the rest of the day’s competitors from the hotel with the sound off, before dinner with amberfox at pok pok (thanks for the tip, meehan!)…a quiet night w/sleet and campfire. (oh, and devin pedde is going to win the USBC. just putting that out there now.)


two quick trips to billy wilson‘s Barista cafe started the morning, and a blustery stroll to Coffeehouse Northwest also. it’s important to get a lot of coffee in you before heading over to a barista competition, even if Four Barrel is attractively staffing the fourth machine. when i got here i saw jesse crouse already a minute into his routine, the baristapoet suaver than in the Great Lakes and just as tight…andrew ferguson from stomping grounds in arkansas literally had a KOOL-AID MAN pitcher on his table (the face…done in sharpie) and LA Mill’s amber johnson served a “deconstructed cracker jack” signature drink featuring “popcorn-infused whipped cream”…!!!…brett walker used the NON RADIO EDIT version of “whatever you like” in his last two minutes of beardformance…and on the way off stage i hear marcus boni grab a sensory judge and ask “you’re not allergic to shellfish, are you?”

this afternoon is gonna be sick.

gotta go watch r. willbur, yo.

p.s. is the opposite of “coffee-forward” in a drink, “coffee-backward”?

One Response to “USBC dispatch #1, disjointed and deconstructed”

  1. jane ( mike's mom) phillips

    we always enjoy your commentary. wish we could be there but since we can’t, glad you’re there to help us keep up on it.

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