I’m no coffee expert, (compared to my husband, anyways), but if there’s one thing I do know about coffee, it’s that it brings people together. This was definitely apparent this weekend at the New Zealand Coffee Festival.
Brendon was there working on behalf of Espresso Workshop, serving up a couple coffees via Hario V60 pourover alongside Andrew Smart. The pourover is a simple brew method that can be done at home, using the V60 ceramic cone, and a paper filter. Below, Andrew gives a demonstration.
Brendon also got a turn on the bar next to David, featuring Espresso Workshop’s “Mr. White” blend.
Our friends Brandon, Dale, and Amber joined us at this event. All left highly caffeinated and with a strong sense of the community that the coffee industry here in New Zealand is built on.
What was neat about this particular event is how focused it was on creating opportunities for people to just come, experience, and learn about coffee. Education was a huge part of this event, as was just sharing the experience of coffee. It was neat seeing leaders in the coffee industry taking the time to pass on their coffee knowledge to the public.
The atmosphere of the festival was vibrant and inviting. Completely void of the motive to sell any products; the festival seemed to exude the idea, “Just come and taste.” It was all about sharing the experience, and offering a variety of coffee experiences to delight, intrigue, and stimulate.
In the circular third floor atop the Auckland City Museum, more than 20 coffee vendors, roasters, and cafes set up booths featuring their own roasts, along with a variety of different brew methods. Which was surely an eye opening experience for the public are known to quite enjoy their flat whites.
A traditional Ethiopian coffee ceremony could be observed as part of the festival, as well. In cultural dress, an Ethiopian family sat and roasted green coffee beans in a pan, then ground and prepared the coffee using traditional methods. It was intriguing to observe coffee being made in its original preparation.
My personal favorite of the event were the affogato’s served by Kokako, an organic cafe located in the district of Parnell, near the Auckland Museum. The scoop of vanilla gelato dripping with a fresh shot of espresso won my heart and vote for tastiest coffee confection.
The NZ Coffee Fest was a glorious testament to the way coffee brings people together, and an opportunity to experience coffee in many different forms. There is no doubt that people left with expanded notions about the possibilities that coffee can hold, a sense of connectedness within the realm of coffee, and a caffeine high that would last long into the evening.