Thursday, March 31, 2005

On Stimulatedly Serving Stimulants

If we are what we eat, what becomes of the people serving us our identities? Do they go through a transformation too? Phuong Tran, a Seattle barista competing in an upcoming international barista competition, seems to have become something she might not have, had she not started serving coffee.
Tran becomes one with her inner gunfighter. From this moment, it's all about nuance and speed.

When she tamps the espresso grounds, is her elbow at a 90-degree angle? (It's the only way the water evenly permeates and extracts the coffee.) ...

Tran was in Japan for three weeks training baristas at Zoka's new coffee shop in Tokyo. She returned March 5 with just one week to finalize her routine and signature drink for the U.S. Barista Championship.

The night before the competition, Tran returned to work after dinner to practice. She stayed up all night perfecting her routine, save power naps in-between.
The article says that the competition entails making 12 drinks (four cups of three different drinks), all the while having a good style that produces aesthetically pleasing and tasty coffee--in under two minutes! It's neat that the barista enacts the quickness and alertness that coffee is thought and said to provide.


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