WBC Countdown: Barista Champion of Denmark Rasmus Gamrath

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RASMUS GAMRATH
BARISTA CHAMPION OF DENMARK
@RasmusGamrath

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Barista Mag: Before coffee, did you work in a different job or industry, or what did you study in school?

Rasmus: I have been working in the service industry for about 15 years, as a kitchenhand, waiter, bartender and barista

BMag: How did you get started in coffee?

Rasmus: I was actually working as a bartender in Sydney and got inspired by the coffee culture there. When I got back to Denmark I decided I wanted to work with coffee full time. So I moved to Copenhagen and started to apply at the coffee shops.

BMag: What was your first amazing experience with coffee?

Rasmus: It was a French press of the Ethiopian Idido served from Peter Dupont at The Coffee Collective (before I had any clue who he was). The fat intense fruity sweetness combined with the acidity absolutely blew me away. At that time I hadn’t tasted lightly roasted coffee before, so it was something completely different from anything I had ever tried before.

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BMag: Who has been your greatest influence in coffee? Why?

There are a lot of people who could be mentioned but if it could only be one, it would probably be Peter Dupont, our CEO. His approach to coffee and his way of looking at it, and working with the relationship between the farmer-roaster-barista, the direct trade model, the way of looking at coffee as something constantly evolving—it’s all very inspiring.

BMag: What would you like to see change about the coffee industry/community?

Rasmus: A lot more focus on education, thereby creating an industry where you can choose to be a barista as a profession for a long period of time.

BMag: Name a barista you admire, and why:

Rasmus: My colleague Peter Ebdrup for his no bullshit approach to coffee, understanding of flavor and taste, and of course plain awesomeness.

BMag: Do you have a favorite customer? If so, tell us about him or her.

There are a lot of them! One of them is Anders who comes in at least once a day to have his double espresso. He’s great to speak with, a nice guy who alway has a genuine response to what he’s been served. He’s interested in the craftsmanship and he is one of those guests that confirms that there is a reason why we as baristas work hard to do our best everyday

BMag: Besides your own cafe, what cafe do you think everyone should visit?

Rasmus: Workshop coffee in London—the one on Clerkenwell Road

BMag: Which coffee producing country you would like to visit, and why?

Rasmus: I would love to visit Kenya. We have been buying coffee from Kieni in the Nyeri region for some years now and it’s been my favorite for a long time. It is also the coffee I am using for the competition. The acidity, the sweetness, and the insane aromas make it standout. It would be great to visit and see how they are able to produce such an awesome coffee.

BMag: What are your interests outside of coffee?

Rasmus: Football, playing a little bit, watching a lot, especially the legendary Vejle Boldklub!

BMag: Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

Rasmus: Making coffee that’s even more tasty than what we are brewing now.

BMag: Is there anyone you would like to thank or who helped you prepare for the WBC?

Rasmus: Klaus Thomsen, Peter Dupont, Peter Ebdrup, and all my colleagues and friends for helping out, and of course all the members of Kieni for producing the awesome coffee I am competing with.

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.