From Roasting to Machine Cleanliness: Baristas in School

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Editor’s note: Barista Magazine is thrilled to be sponsoring the Barista & Farmer Coffee Reality TV project happening right now in Puerto Rico. Publisher Ken Olson is in Puerto Rico with the group for the second half of the event, which brings 15 Italian baristas together at Hacienda San Pedro to work the farm, learn from agronomists, and participate in challenges, and Ken will write about it here on the blog and in the December+January issue of Barista Magazine. 

The wonderful journalist Davide Agazzi has once again written an account of the most recent activities at the Barista & Farmer project. Here is his sixth installment. (To read his first report, go HERE. To read the second report, go HERE. And go HERE for his third report. Find his fourth story HERE. And his fifth and most recent post can be accessed HERE.) And be sure to check out the video, too!

The event is coming to a close—baristas will fly home to Italy tomorrow, Monday, after a day of sightseeing in Old San Juan. For all the details and photos from the event, check out Ken’s article coming up in the next issue of Barista Magazine!

November 8, 2013
Jayuya, Puerto Rico

Coffee picking on the farm and then depositing the cherry at the weigh station quickly emerged as the most important times of the morning for the baristas. The weigh, with Francesco Sanapo acting as a master of cerimony, has achieved the status of a defining moment of this first edition of Barista & Farmer, gaining everyone’s attention, from bystanders to local farmers.

Francesco cools off after a morning of picking coffee.

Francesco cools off after a morning of picking coffee.

Once again Agnelo Segoni and Serena Bernardini were competing for the top spot, showing superior skills in the coffee picking phase in the long rows of Hacienda San Pedro. Friday’s harvest brought triumph to Agnelo, who picked 28 kilos, with Serena coming in second place with 26. The bronze medal went to Simone Dessi, who harvested 21.5 kilos of coffee.

Hacienda San Pedro is a pretty spectacular place to work.

Hacienda San Pedro is a pretty spectacular place to work.

Both of the lessons in the afternoon, held in the academy of the Hacienda San Pedro, shared the common point of quality, approached in two different ways.

Baristas and the film crew are like family now.

Baristas and the film crew are like family now.

The first one featured Josè Arreola, one the most prominent figures in the area of specialty coffee, toastmaster, and WBC (World Barista Championship) judge, as the teacher. His lesson focused on the importance of roasting, and once it was over, the baristas were immediatly thrown in a practical challenge, where they were involved in the tasting of the same coffee at different roasting stages.

Jose Arreola teaches a roasting class at Barista & Farmer.

Jose Arreola teaches a roasting class at Barista & Farmer.

The second lesson was held by Gianfranco Carubelli (representing sponsor Puly Caff) who shifted everyone’s attention on the theme of the espresso machine cleaning, underlining how the barista’s role is the one of the bean perfectionist, and how the quality of the fruit has to be cleanly tranferred into the cup.

Baristas learned the importance of keeping the espresso machine CLEAN!

Baristas learned the importance of keeping the espresso machine CLEAN!

In the evening it was time for chilling and “fiesta” (= party): a band of local musicians humorously broke into Casa Barista (the residence where the 15 baristas live) following the typical tradition of the Parranda, which constists in involving and inviting as many people as possible to the party by knocking at every door, therefore easily and visibly multiplying the number of voluntary (and involuntary) party goers. The evening fiesta was a break from the routine, a moment to relax, share in music and fun with the Atienza family, the film crew, and the staff of Hacienda San Pedro and Barista & Farmer.

Another day of incredibly happy baristas enjoying a beautiful coffee farm.

Another day of incredibly happy baristas enjoying a beautiful coffee farm.

Event supportated by: Hacienda San Pedro, Sigep, La Cimbali, Imperator, 9Bar, Pulycaff, Quarta Caffè, Caffè del Faro, Caffè Corsini, Pacorini, Brambati, Pascucci, Costadoro.

Media Partners: Barista Magazine & Comunicaffè.

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