Coffee is the new black. Maybe not a short black or a long black, but drafted, filtered or expressed, it is the hipster’s first choice. Ten years ago Starbucks was Queen of the roast in NYC, but the Coffee Festival at the Armory on the weekend showcased just how much the culture has changed. And Australia has been an essential part of this. Thank you Australia!
Apart from a classic coffee stained TAA postcard, Toby’s Estate and Bluestone Lane don’t brand themselves with the flag. Although ‘international’ is definitely trending. The current buzz in coffee is the wine-like terminology, with single-origin beans coming from one field in one country. Guatemalan coffee has low notes of nuttiness, Ethiopian has high notes of berries, a South African financed blend called Magnum has whiskey from Speyside in Scotland and cream from the Netherlands. Even Starbucks now has a premium outlet in Macys featuring exclusively sourced beans.
But the biggest thing in coffee is the look. Being a barista from Brooklyn is almost mandatory, which of course makes tattoos essential. Luckily I was a visitor rather than a vendor, and people were happy to pose. When my tastebuds were finally overwhelmed it was time to try something that didn’t require any at all – vodka! With fresh lemon juice, cucumber puree and mint it was a perfect one shot hit….