Tempesta Barista Attitude is about to make its competition debut at the World Barista Championship, and as BeanScene explores, it’s more than a name or a piece of technology.
Barista Attitude is a name the barista community will start hearing more of. At first glance, the words may be confused with a barista’s strong opinion or behaviour, but in fact, the brand aims to have nothing more than a positive influence on the coffee community and use its voice for good.
“The name Barista Attitude is a catalyser but it’s something we believe in – the power of the barista’s attitude and energy to share positive change,” says Cosimo Libardo, Strategic Advisor to the Barista Attitude project.
The brand’s latest espresso machine, the Tempesta, has been named the Qualified Espresso Machine of the World Barista Championship (WBC) from 2022 to 2025, and will make its competition debut at the Melbourne International Coffee Expo (MICE), hosting the WBC in September.
While the machine and brand Barista Attitude are relatively new to market, both sit under the supportive umbrella of CMA in Veneto, Italy, which has been manufacturing espresso machines since 1969.
“The Barista Attitude project started a few years ago as a collaborative effort between internal and external stakeholders to do something different for the market that hadn’t been done before,” says Cinzia Pietrobon, Barista Attitude Brand Manager. “It led to the creation of Storm a few years ago, but it never became a complete project. We took the time to improve and explore, using the experience and knowledge of CMA and Storm – still very much part of the DNA of the company – to approach the market in a new way, and that’s what we’ve done with Barista Attitude, and Tempesta.”
Being named the Qualified Espresso Machine of the WBC is one thing, but Cinzia says the partnership is about much more than having a good product.
“We had to start thinking about who we were today, how we got here, the experience we want to share through Tempesta, and what we want to be tomorrow,” she says.
The result was a company manifesto representing the values of the brand first, rather than its technical ability.
“The manifesto is not just a statement of what we are, but an exploration of how we can do better and what direction we need to take,” says Cosimo. “It’s more of a moral compass for the way we’re doing things, but it will materialise into projects and what we do in future.”
Francis Needham and Michele Marchetti of communications company Display. studio helped designed the manifesto, using bright colours and eye-catching graphics to great a point of difference. Some of its key phrases include Barista Attitude’s “belief in the greatness of small things and exceptional routines”, “coffee is a plant not a cup”, and “exploring means feeling”, symbolising the barista’s connection to the espresso machine.
“The relationship between the barista and machine is powerful. Each time a barista makes an espresso, they’re exploring something: the changes in temperature, the pressure, the extraction, the flavour – it’s a constant exploration of coffee, and that’s part of the spirit of Barista Attitude. What we’re trying to give the barista is a tool that gives them absolute control and the possibility to experiment,” Cinzia says.
That combination is thanks to Barista Attitude’s hardworking factory workers in Veneto, Italy, whom Cosimo says are extremely proud of the work they have produced.
That includes Tempesta’s intuitive touchscreen interface, which controls the brewing of the coffee. Displays on the group head make it easy for operators to receive performance and extraction data in real-time, in addition to information on pressure, flow and temperature. This is a feature Cosimo is confident baristas around the world will be impressed with.
The WBC version of the Tempesta is a multi-boiler system, but other modules are available with FRC pressure profiling for users to modulate manually or program. The temperature of the group heads can also be changed quickly, with a precision of +/- 0.5 in temperature settings, which can also be easily adjusted.
“Every feature and function of the Tempesta is for the insurance of quality in the cup, and to allow the barista to focus their attention on the customer,” Cinzia says.
Everything has been designed with ergonomics and ease of operation in mind. The height of the trays is adjustable and the steam wands, featuring Super Dry technology without need for additional water, are easy to modulate with progressive levers that adjust to different pitcher sizes.
“The ergonomics were really considered because we don’t want the machine to interrupt the barista’s movement, but to facilitate and enhance it. We want to leave space for the barista to express themselves and interact with the machine. After all, the machine is the stage for the barista to share their talent,” Cosimo says.
“The espresso machine is also an agora, a place where space and imagination combine. It becomes a place where beautiful people come together, where the most beautiful possibilities are created, and where important conversations are had – job interviews, catchups, breakups.”
Barista Attitude is also focused on the social and sustainable impact of its product. To support the livelihood of coffee farmers, the company sponsors the Specialty Coffee Association’s Green Coffee Buyers and Sellers program to connect producers with green bean buyers and roasters. Internally, Barista Attitude is conducting its own diversity and inclusion project, Project Flux, to culturally map areas for improvement as a company, and as a group of people.
“We want to have a greater social impact with the projects we’re involved with, and the opportunities we create internally and externally,” Cinzia says.
Outside its own walls, Barista Attitude also wants to inspire the next generation of baristas and attract more people to the profession.
“Baristas are the last touchpoint of coffee for many people, but they’re so much more: psychologists, artists, creators. We ask a lot of them. Barista work is not easy, and now the industry is facing staff shortages. The question is: how can we attract more people to the profession? You can do a course to learn about brewing methods but who teaches you the art of hospitality,” Cosimo says. “We don’t believe baristas will ever be replaced, but we do value their role as one of the highest professions, and we would like to have a positive impact on their development.”
Part of that impact, Cosimo adds, is to remove any stigma surrounding specialty coffee as a privileged beverage.
“Coffee should be accessible but not necessary luxury per se,” Cosimo says. “We want to create a better, more joyful experience without any arrogance, which only makes coffee bitter. We know that great extraction without a smile only serves to fill the cup, so more smiles please.”
When the world’s best baristas take to the stage for the WBC in just a few months’ time, using Tempesta, it will be an opportunity to familiarise themselves with the machine. It will also be a time for Barista Attitude to learn from the barista community and enhance its relationships.
“We are very aware we are the newcomers to a certain degree, but we’re not amateurs. We are one of the largest companies globally with huge technical and manufacturing experience behind us, and we have a really wonderful machine in Tempesta,” Cosimo says. “But more than celebrating its technology ability, our partnership of the WBC is an opportunity for us to learn from the community, to improve and to continue to do better.”
Barista Attitude has a clear direction for Tempesta in the Australian market, in what Cinzia describes as “one of the premier coffee markets” it wants to succeed in.
“We are going to be very seriously and deeply embracing the Australian market and we look forward to having meaningful conversations at MICE in Melbourne,” she says. “I hope that Australia gives the machine a chance to perform, and a chance to create relationships so we can stay beyond the WBC.”
This article appears in the June 2022 edition of BeanScene. Subscribe HERE.