What a month of nail-biting performances and results at the World Barista Championship (WBC) in Amsterdam in June.
John Gordon represented New Zealand on the world stage after stepping up three times as the United Kingdom national competitor. After the preliminary round on day one, John was placed first. He marched into the finals to finish a credible sixth in the world. The last time NZ was in the finals was 2013, which was also the last time that John had competed at the WBC.
For his routine, John pared back the technicalities to emphasise the importance of what’s in the cup. His performance opened with a description of his coffee career from barista to roaster to technician, which has always been underpinned by his obsession with technology.
John’s first origin trip to Ethiopia was the moment he fell in love with the beauty of the country and its people. However, he discovered that the local producers faced issues when processing their coffees. Their inaccessibility to resources, techniques, technology, and lack of reliable power source were the inspiration behind John’s theme of ecological sustainability.
“Washing stations have power outages and cherries sit for too long, leading to unwanted fermentation and even worse, rotting. These issues can be solved with modern solutions such as whole cherry carbonic maceration,” he told the judges.
Project Origin Founder Sasa Sestic introduced the world to carbonic maceration during the 2015 WBC in Seattle. Incidentally, John used the same Ethiopian coffee in his routine as this year’s WBC winner, Agneiszka Rojewska.
In other news, the first half of 2018 has been filled with exciting events. April saw the Meadow Fresh New Zealand Barista Championship closely followed by the Queenstown Annual General Meeting (AGM) in May. The WBC and Guild blind cupping events were held in June, and July saw the New Zealand Cup Tasters Championship and Meadow Fresh New Zealand Latte Art Championship held over the same weekend.
The NZSCA AGM is always a highlight with networking, industry discussions, Recognition Awards, and portfolio presentations at the forefront.
A new board was elected with Jessica Godfrey stepping into the Immediate Past President role. Meanwhile, the executive roles were filled. David Burton from Jack’s Coffee is President, Tom Handiside from La Marzocco is Vice-President, Roz Cattell from Santos Coffee is Second Vice President, and Nic McClean from Extra Shot Consultants is Treasurer.
The new President wasted no time in allocating the committee responsibilities for the board members with a meeting held soon after the AGM to maintain an agenda. David has a quality pool of personnel to choose from including Masako Yamamoto from Atomic Coffee Roasters, John Cole from Mojo Coffee Roasters, and Claire Matheson from Coffee Educators.
Julia Wild from Meadow Fresh was elected as Allied Representative. David Green from L’affare will continue to chair the Education committee.
Ryan Mitchell from Suntory stepped down as Treasurer, Rachel Berry from The Barista Academy stood down from the Allied Representative role and Ed Tanner from The Sailor’s Son also stepped down from the board. We thank them for their work over the last stellar year.
Nico Refiti from Ozone Coffee Roasters continues as the Guild chairperson, a role he took up in December replacing Ria Lingard.
During the AGM, Association President Jessica Godfrey presented four outstanding members of the Association with NZSCA Recognition Awards to Christopher Short of Cafetto, David Green, Geoff Marsland, and David Burton. The NZSCA would like to recognise the incredible work these individuals do. These legends drive the industry forward with innovation, inspiration, and support.
Sometimes the greatest contributions to our industry’s growth are away from the competition spotlight, and for this, we say thank you.
Image credit: Jeff Hann