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Coffee City

Melissa Allison follows the world's biggest coffee-shop chain and other Seattle caffeine purveyors.

August 27, 2010 at 2:52 PM

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Weekend Wrap: Victrola Coffee starts weekend cuppings; Italian barista knocks U.S. espresso; starting conversations in cafes

Posted by Melissa Allison

Thumbnail image for shoulder.pngIt's been a lively week:

  • Seattle has a lot of free, public coffee tastings, also known as cuppings. But few are on weekends. Victrola is filling the gap beginning this weekend, with a regular cupping every Saturday at noon at its Beacon Hill cafe, 3215 Beacon Ave. S., and cuppings on Sunday afternoons (no specified time) at the Roastery, 310 E. Pike Street. The cafe at 411 15th Avenue E. will hold Friday cuppings at 1:30 p.m.

  • While the Specialty Coffee Association of America and Coffee Fest duke it out over territory, and the National Coffee Association wanders around the country with big corporate players, the National Automatic Merchandising Association has decided there should be yet another coffee trade event. Its CoffeeShow 2010 will run October 20 to 22 at Bally's Resort in Las Vegas. Here's the line-up. Its niche appears to be business advice with a hint of coffee.

  • Italian barista and blogger Giorgios Milos riled New York and other U.S. baristas in a Salon article ripping American espresso. Here's one U.S. Canadian take and one British take on the matter. (Thanks, @SmooveBCoffee and @Espresso911.)

  • Starbucks indefinitely postponed opening in Croatia after saying it would debut in Zagreb in October, the Croatian Times reports. Interesting, given that Starbucks has picked up international expansion.

  • .... Although not as much as Dunkin' Donuts, which bills itself as a coffee chain despite the name and opened 338 new shops in the first half of the year, including 75 in the U.S., Business Week reports. Starbucks opened 22 new stores in the first six months of this year. Canton, Mass.-based Dunkin', which is privately owned, has more than 9,000 restaurants in 31 countries.

  • The International Women's Coffee Alliance wants to raise $350,000 by the end of 2011 to improve the lives of women in the coffee industry, including growers. Its next bi-annual conference is scheduled for October 2011 in El Salvador.

  • hello.png
  • Finally, in an area of coffeehouse culture that I don't write about enough, Jason Simon has launched an experiment. The Caffeinated Conversations.com blogger, Tweeter and social media expert is hanging out at Seattle-area cafes wearing a shirt that says, "Hello, my name is Jason" on the front and, "Tap me on the shoulder if you'd like to chat" on the back. How cool is that? I sometimes think this guy could single-handedly melt Seattle (N)ice.


Photos of Jason Simon taken by his wife, Janine Simon

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