Coffee Island went to Portugal for the 2018 Barista Camp!
Yet for another year, Coffee Island and Coffee Campus took part in the biggest coffee festival for the European community of baristi …. Barista Camp! We packed our bags and flew to Evoral of Portugal, where we stayed from September 3 to September 6.
For starters, an explanation of what the Barista Camp is…
Barista Camp is a huge coffee festival for the European Baristi community, offering participants a unique experience of learning and evolving in an environment that promotes education, exchange of ideas, new experiences and trends. Thus, every year the barista camp attracts about 200 baristi for four days of training, tasting, lectures with innovative content, and plenty of fun! Participants can choose between different sections of SCA (barista, sensory, green coffee and brew) to develop our knowledge with some of the best and certified instructors.
So, staying faithful to our appointment, with out tickets in our hands, I (Amalia), Michalis, Elias, Christos and Tasos, left for a little bit our positions at the trainings of the Coffee Campuses, and we prepared for a unique experience!
At the airport with the creator of latte art .. Luigi Lupi !!!
At Lisbon airport, we met with the rest of the Barista Camp participants, to get to Evora together. The event started with a warm welcome from the managers, giving us the necessary time to get to know each other, and of course some welcome gifts.
Before we even realized it, the lessons have already started! Michalis, Elias and I had chosen the Sensory section, while Tasos and Christos had chosen the Green Coffee section.
At Sensory’s lesson, we improved our skills in tasting, exercising with solutions of varying intensity, which were sweet, bitter, acidic or salty. We also “practiced” our ability to smell with 36 perfumes, which in the coffee sector are called le nez du café. After constant practice in cupping, we managed to make a good coffee grading for each coffee we tasted and smelled.
Cupping- Sensory Intermediate.
Cupping is the coffee grading method used by professional coffee tasters, Q graders, coffee farmers, roasters, barista to assess coffee based on its characteristics, aroma, taste, body and aftertaste.
“Training” our noses with the aromas le nez du café
Similarly, in the Green Coffee lesson, Christos and Tasos dealt with the basic concepts surrounding green coffee: production, processing, sorting, shipping and storing. Finally, they rated green coffee on the basis of its defects and learned how they affect the taste of the final beverage.
Barista Camp is the perfect place to meet people who have the same passion as you … COFFEE!
The well-known Team Challenges help the participants get to know each other better. All Barista Camp participants are divided into 10 groups and through various activities that take place in the camp throughout the 4-day period, thet try to earn points. Cupping competitions, coffee knowledge tests and photo contests with cupping spoons are just a few challenges.
Team challenge. Credit: Barista Guild of Europe/Jordan Sanchez
The last night, the announcement of the results takes place and the prizes are awarded to the winning team! Of course, my team won!
Photo with cupping spoons for team challenge.
The last day arrives and it starts with early morning examinations to certify the knowledge we have gained. Sensory tasting, correct tds extractions for the brewing, coffee rating for green coffee, correctly extracted espresso and latte art for the baristi.
Sensory Intermediate after exams. Credit: Barista Guild of Europe/Jordan Sanchez
We passed the exam and the certification is in our hands. We greet the Barista Camp for 2018 holding our diplomas, smiling for the incredible experience we have experienced!
But also many new friends …
Coffee Campus Executive