Barista Magazine

AUG-SEP 2019

Serving People Serving Coffee Since 2005

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F O A M : N E W S + T R E N D S TOP DESIGN IN COFFEE SHOWCASED IN BERLIN FIRST LAUNCHED AT THE 2016 Specialty Coffee Association Expo in Atlanta, the Design Lab exhibit and competition originally focused only on coffee packaging. Today it showcases all kinds of great design being created throughout the specialty-coffee industry, with four separate categories: Spaces, Vessels, Branding, and Pack- aging. As part of the 2019 World of Coffee event in Berlin June 6–8, this year's four award-winning designs demonstrate how extraordi- nary design can best showcase extraordinary coffee, enticing coffee professionals and everyday drinkers alike to seek out high-quality, engaging, and sustainable coffee experiences. SPACES COMPETITION WINNER: CARROW COFFEE Carrow Coffee Roasters won the Spaces competition for its low-im- pact wooden roastery in rural Ireland. Andrew Willis, who runs the operation with his wife, Paola, says he first discovered his passion for coffee on assignment for Bloomberg News in Bogotá, Colombia. After meeting local farmers and witnessing their hard work first- hand, Andrew enrolled in roasting and cupping courses, eventually becoming a certified Q-grader. Returning from South America in 2017, the couple settled on Andrew 's grandparents' sheep-and-veg- etable farm located in County Sligo, just off the Atlantic Coast of Ireland, and began roasting coffee Two years ago, they refurbished their startup roastery with the help of local woodworker Steven Burke. Describing the project, An- drew says that "the aim was to create an efficient production space that blended in with our rural setting and was also welcoming to our local specialty community." The structure is made of natural and durable materials, including larch wood sourced from nearby Irish forests. Larch is a highly resinous wood that seals itself, forming a naturally waterproof barrier against the rain. Rather than using nails, Steven chose to use oak pegs to hold the structure togeth- er, and he repurposed salvaged terra-cotta tiles for the floor. The plywood workbenches and shelves inside the roastery have been treated with natural beeswax to make them waterproof, instead of using synthetic preservatives. To reduce waste, all of the water from the sink is returned to the fields on the farm, so chemical-containing soaps are not used on site. Chaff from the roaster and spent coffee grounds are used as compost for the vegetable garden. The microroastery currently supplies around 10 cafés across Ireland using beans sourced from small-scale producers around the world. Andrew explains, "My family has been in the farming business for generations. We're sheep-and-vegetable farmers, so we empathize with the difficulties that farmers face. We also make a big effort to source beans that are grown in an environmentally sustainable way." The design of Carrow Coffee's new roastery un- equivocally reflects their business ethos. VESSELS COMPETITION WINNER: THE CHAMPIONS SIGNATURE COLLECTION BY LOVERAMICS The Champions Signature Collection, which won top honors in the Vessels category, is a beautiful yet functional collaboration among ceramicist Ben Sutton, internationally renowned ceramics brand Loveramics, and 2017 World Barista Champion Dale Harris. Back in 2017 as he prepared to represent the U.K. in the WBC, Dale com- missioned friend and ceramicist Ben Sutton to create cups for his stage performance. The cups were exquisite, hand-thrown pieces, but due to their delicate nature were not durable enough for every- day use in cafés. Knowing Loveramics' expertise in ceramic design, Dale turned to the company to interpret Ben's original design for a coffee-shop environment. "These cups are designed specifically for coffee lovers who want the right cup for their favorite coffee," says Simon Stevens, head of design at Loveramics. "Their capacities fit with the coffee commu- nity's requirement [80ml, 150ml, 200ml] where the proportion of milk is important not to drown out the flavor of the coffee. Each one has a continuous curve inside to rotate the espresso when it hits the cup, adding oxygen enhancing its flavor and preserving the depth of the crema." The cups come in three different colors, two of which are achieved with traditional celadon glazes, which enhances the crafted look of the cups. This collaboration has been buzzed about through- out the international coffee community since it was launched at SCA Expo in Boston last April before winning the award in Berlin. BRANDING COMPETITION WINNER: CAFÉ NAHUAL Guatemala's Café Nahual, a family-run business, was the only roaster representative of a producing country to enter the Design Lab competition this year, and it came away a big winner, taking first place in the Branding category. Inspired by Mayan spiritual- ity, Café Nahual's bright and beautiful aesthetic was conceived by local designers from Agnes Studio and directed by Irene Coto, Café Nahual's marketing manager. Research and consultations were key to the design process. The design team attended Mayan ceremonies and even met with a Mayan priest to better understand Nahual, which, in Mesoamerican folk religion, means a personal guardian spirit or protective alter ego assumed by various Mesoamerican Indians to reside most often in an animal. Describing the final product, Irene says, "Every detail has been considered to correctly and respectfully communicate the richness of this way of living. The concepts behind every packaging design, including Energia (energy), Armonia (harmony), and Espiritu (spirit), go hand in hand with the core of Mayan spirituality." The packaging also contains personalized elements, including the found- er's date of birth in Mayan numbers, the founder's last name, and 13 eyes that represent the 13 energies. This modern take on ancient cosmovision is reflected across Café Nahual's entire brand, which, according to Irene, "aims to share Guatemala's best coffee with the world through the understanding of Mayan spirituality. Both are beautiful things that everyone should get to know." PACKAGING COMPETITION WINNER: SIMPLO SIMPLo, a no-fuss premium coffee company founded by award-win- ning roasters in Poland, partnered with Planeta Design to create the distinctly bold design that was selected as the winner of the Pack- aging category. " We're a brand that believes life doesn't have to be as complicated as it sometimes seems," says Konrad Oleksak, head of product for SIMPLo. With the goal of simplifying the complexity of coffee, the company aspires to roast and serve a superior coffee every time. SIMPLo's vibrant packaging won't feature the roast date or country of origin because, as Konrad explains, "SIMPLo takes care of the big stuff so you can soak up the simple pleasures life has to offer. After all, experience is everything." SIMPLo will soon be opening an online shop and shipping its coffees worldwide. —Caroline Cormier 24 barista magazine

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