Barista Magazine

OCT-NOV 2017

Serving People Serving Coffee Since 2005

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Page 13 of 115

Publisher Kenneth R. Olson Editor in Chief Sarah Allen Art Director Demitri Fregosi Powers Online Editor Ashley Rodriguez Copy Editors Erin Meister, Chris Ryan Photographer Tormund Giantsbane Business Manager Cheryl Lueder Advertising Sales Sarah Allen 800.296.9108 Contributors Tracy Allen Chris Danger Joshua Dusk-Peebles Honor Forte Andy Freivogel Jade Johnson Jason "Double J" Johnson Alex Lambert RJ Joseph Phil Markel Erin Meister Sorrel Moseley-Williams Alabaster Pizzo Jack Pollock Ashley Rodriguez Chris Ryan Maria Szulc Błażej Szydzisz Joshua Vasko Editorial Advisory Board Nora Burkey, The Chain Collaborative Anna Gutierrez, Barista 22 Hidenori Izaki, Samurai Coffee Experience Heather Kelley, Stumptown Coffee Roasters Sam Low, Da Lin Todd Mackey, Bolt Coffee Co. Mike Marquard, Blueprint Coffee Noah Namowicz, Café Imports Lorenzo Perkins, Fleet Coffee Sarah Richmond, Equator Coffees + Teas Craig Simon, Think Tank Coffee Jess Steffy, Square One Coffee Teresa von Fuchs, Genuine Origin Coffee Project Laila Willbur, Cherry Street Public House Barista Magazine 4345 NE 72nd Ave. Portland, OR 97218 phone: 800.296.9108 fax: 971.223.3659 email: Barista Magazine is published bimonthly by Ollen Media, LLC. Subscriptions are $30 in the United States, $45 USD in Canada, and $60 USD for the rest of the world. The contents of this publication may not be reproduced in whole or in part without written permission from the publisher. Postmaster please send address corrections to: Barista Magazine, 4345 NE 72nd Ave., Portland, OR 97218. ISSN: 1944-3544 Copyright 2017 Barista Magazine. All rights reserved. BARIST A M A G A Z I N E E D I T O R L E T T E R something special I DON'T OWN A CAFÉ, and there's no world that exists in which I can make coffee as well as anyone reading this magazine. I like to think I have lots in common with you all anyway. Yeah, I'm probably fl attering myself, but here's where I'm going with this: Ken and I are obsessive about coffee and the people who grow, transport, quality-check, roast, and brew it—that's all been true since even before we started Barista Mag in 2005. What we also share with our readers—inspired baristas and dedicated shop owners among them—is a desire to create something singular, something memorable, and something spectacular. We don't leave the café/ roastery/offi ce until we're satisfi ed we've done the best job we could. But when I'm exhausted and I haven't had a day off in weeks, I've been known to grumble about why we put so much into this magazine thing anyway, when it seems there are others who don't work one minute longer than it takes to do a passable job. Ken says, "You know the answer to that," and I do. It's because I care so much—too much sometimes, I know. I love what I do to the extent that I just can't help it. Let me clarify something: I'm not at all saying this is the optimal way to be (some would say it's not even healthy). There's the work-to-live or live-to-work distinction, and both are right for different people. Part of the reason I'm so strongly drawn to the coffee community, though, is because of the shared hunger, that full-body investment into the culture, the people, the work. While editing this issue of Barista Magazine, I saw a theme throughout that wasn't planned (I love it when that happens). Verve Coffee cofound- er Colby Barr says in the "Master Q+A" feature (page 106), "Don't compromise on quality of prod- uct, hiring and training, or brand, because at the end of the day that's why people will come in the fi rst place, and why they'll keep coming back." And as I read "The New Slow Bar" (page 66) about the evolution of in-house manual brewing, I remembered the fi rst time I went to Four Bar- rel Coffee in San Francisco's Mission District and saw an oasis among the noisy throngs of people in line for espresso: a brew bar set off all on its own like a refuge of quiet and serenity. I remembered Four Barrel owner Jeremy Tooker telling me that offering customers all kinds of coffee experiences would always be a priority. See, the dream of having awesome coffee available just about everywhere is on its way to coming true. How, then, do you stand out as really awesome in a sea of also-great cafés? Col- by and Jeremy understand that there has to be that "something special," that thing you offer in addition to killer coffee that no one else does. It could be anything really—a baller tea program, amazingly comfortable couches, or your unique condiment bar. I remember when I fi rst moved to Portland, Ore., I could get pretty terrifi c cof- fee anywhere, but I wound up at the Fresh Pot on North Mississippi again and again because of the bagels, which came toasted perfectly, dripping with butter, and I could enjoy them in a cozy corner of a friendly shop. None of the other places serving amazing coffee in Portland offered me that particular experience. Kevin Fuller, owner of Portland's Albina Press, recounted a story to me about how stoked he was when he realized what easy access he had to extraordinary equipment and remarkable coffees as he was preparing to open his fi rst shop. Then it struck him that all the other café owners do, too—so how was he going to stand out? For Kevin, it was the people he hired. For Jeremy, it might be that slow bar. For Lindsey Pitman and Sarah Winkler, who own Trade + Lore in Asheville, N.C., it could be their anti-harassment policies— designed to not only protect their baristas, but empower them— which they discuss in the article "A Safe Environ- ment for Your Staff " (page 90). RJ Joseph writes about why promoting a work-life balance for your baristas is so vital in the story "10 Low-Cost Solutions for Improving Employee Retention" (page 82). It could also be as simple as great Wi-Fi. Barista Magazine "Tech Support" columnist, Andy Freivogel, weighs in on the current market leaders in guest Wi-Fi services on page 104. Your customers might not even realize that it's the speedy Wi-Fi; or the peaceful vibe of the slow bar on a hectic morning; or the empowered, happy baristas making you a lip-smacking bagel that contribute to your café being their favorite. Trust me, though—little, special details do make all the difference. 14 barista magazine

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