Meet Northeast Regional Barista Champ Sam Lewontin!

This guy! One of the most awesome people ever.

As the proud Media Sponsor of the United States Barista Championship since 2005, Barista Magazine has always compiled and produced a beautiful printed program that serves as a guide, collectors item, introduction to the Regional Barista Champions and the Regional Brewers Cup Champions, all the party info for the SCAA show, and much more! 2013 is no different. This year’s Official United States Barista Championship.U.S. Brewers Cup Event Program is at the printer right now! But we thought we’d give you a sneak peek at some of the most popular content in the program, the Regional Barista Competition Champs and Regional Brewers Cup Champs profiles.

So without further ado…

 

SAM LEWONTIN
NORTHEAST REGIONAL BARISTA CHAMPION
EVERYMAN ESPRESSO
NEW YORK, NEW YORK

This guy! One of the most awesome people ever.

This guy! One of the most awesome people ever.

Years you’ve been a barista?

12, though I made some pretty regrettable coffee for the first six.

 

Job title?

The Other Sam at Everyman Espresso.

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As a seasoned competitor, what advice do you have for a barista considering competing?

Do it! Also, don’t let yourself get discouraged. It’s really easy to lose perspective while you’re training: If you’ve got a lot of yourself tied up in the business of making coffee, the process of repeatedly critiquing your technique and abilities in order to improve them can feel very personal. Know that it isn’t and push through—you’ll work better (and feel better!) about it on the other side.

OMG you’re going to Kenya with Café Imports! What do you hope to take away from this awesome opportunity?

A more intimate sense of how coffee is brought to market. So much of how Kenyan coffees are produced is unique to Kenya. I’m really looking forward to seeing that work firsthand. Also, I’m super excited to meet some of the folks who have produced some of my favorite coffees.

 

Why are you back to compete again? What’s the thrill?

There’s no purer way to test and hone my skills as a barista. Also, I get to meet and hang out with a bunch of amazing people!

 

How do you make coffee at home?

I don’t, actually. Should I be embarrassed about that? I almost feel like I should. When I’m working, I’m continually tasting coffee, and when I’m not, I prefer visiting other shops to brewing at home. There are so many great baristas working in my community that it would be a shame not to take the time to enjoy their work.

 

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.