Day #1 of the NBC continues…

All the teams got up on stage with Jay and David this morning before our first lecture. The occasion? Well, to be applauded for being here, of course. But also so that they—along with us in the audience—could find out a secret surprise. I mentioned before how there are 5 baristas from Colombia—this year’s focus country—here to take part in the awesomeness that is the NBC. But they are actually participating in the events, we found out! Each of the five Nordic teams gets one Colombian barista to assist them in their activities.

Everyone up on stage, waiting to find out the baristas from Colombian who will help each Nordic team.

Then, George Howell took the microphone and treated the audience to a discussion about, well, specialty coffee. It was terrific—Klaus Thomsen himself told me he thoroughly enjoyed it. Check out the video of the lecture when Zachary puts it up on the blog.

Listening to George...

George’s lecture was followed by an in depth review of Colombian coffee regions and varietals. It was heavy, and quite engaging. And the crowd was delighted when the lecture was followed by a cupping of various varietals.

Robert Thoresen of Kaffa discusses Colombia and its varietals and regions.

This was not only a cupping for the whole group (another cheers to those hard working volunteers for seamlessly executing a cupping for 150 people), but the very first competition for the teams.

The cupping area... slurpy slurpy!

Everyone’s having so much fun here in Oslo at the NBC, but the curriculum is pretty amazingly challenging and thought-provoking. But all seem quite attentive and enthusiastic about the lectures and discussions. And when there is a break, friendships are formed and it seems like everyone’s laughing together.

Rose and Liesbeth of Cocoon Coffee in Holland. These girls come to the NBC every single year.

Scrape those cups, Klaus!

A very serious Zachary in our command center, official blogging zone.

Michael and Jeppe show off their cool NBC 2010 cupping spoons. Everyone was given one to keep!

At the close of the cupping, we were invited to head downstairs for a BBQ! It was soooo good—really great food, and with the sun shining, it was delightful to soak some outside in before heading back for the rest of the day’s activities.

Up next: a lecture by Paul Songer on basic taste/sensory skills…

About the Author

Sarah

Sarah Allen is co-founder and editor of Barista Magazine, the international trade magazine for coffee professionals. A passionate advocate for baristas, quality, and the coffee community, Sarah has traveled widely to research stories, interact with readers, and present on a variety of topics affecting specialty coffee. She also loves animals, swimming, ice cream, and living in Portland, Oregon.