CoffeeFest was unreal. We've been to tons of TNT's in support of our local coffee community over the past year but this was next level. Huge show floor, hundreds of exhibitors, hundreds more competitors and thousands of attendees who love coffee as much as we do. We knew we had to go to CoffeeFest to reach the larger coffee community and wanted to find something to participate in as part of the convention. We did not have enough time to put together a booth, so we decided to enter the cold brew competition.
Competition - We developed our coffee with the help of Arcade Coffee Roasters and entered it into the Nitro competition while our buddies at Augies competed in Still competition. Since our cold brew had to be kegged, under pressure, kept fresh, and kept cold; flying or shipping it was out of the question. Instead, we had to drive the 1,000 miles from Southern California to make it happen.
It was so much fun meeting people coming through the line, sharing our coffee and introducing them to our process. We brought a light roasted coffee because that is what we like but we didn't even make it past the first round. The people voting went our way but all three judges went the other way. Eventually, we found out that the top four in the Nitro competition featured medium to dark, traditional cold brews whereas the top four in the Still competition were on the lighter side. Without knowing it, we felt like we brought an IPA to a Stout competition.
We were however stoked to see Augies finish 2nd in the competition using Alto Filters for their coffee. They were one of our earliest supporters and we were happy to help them at their booth as Tim went back and forth to the Espresso competition where they took 3rd overall!
Some of the competitors we got to know were:
- Piper & Leaf
- Algorithm Coffee
- East Portland Coffee Roasters
- Thanksgiving Coffee Company
- Fontana Coffee Roasters
- Reborn Coffee
- Black Oak Coffee Roasters
- Bridge Coffee Co.
- Evans Brothers Coffee
- Clutch Coffee Roasters
Coffee Shops - In addition to the cold brew we tried during the competition, we also stopped by some fantastic shops! In no particular order, the top 10 favorite places we visited were:
- Proud Mary
- Case Study
- Dapper & Wise
- Tailored (Eugene)
To everyone we met: You were awesome! Looking forward to seeing each of you again at future events.
To the coffee shops we visited: Amazing! Great service, excellent coffee and beautiful spaces. Portland does coffee right.
Even though CoffeeFest was amazing, people kept saying, wait until you see the SCA Expo... After that, we're looking forward to it!!