I spent most of the day on Friday at the Northwest Regional Barista Championship in Tacoma. Brandon Arends and I went up and worked as volunteers, and we had quite a trip. Portland was well-represented on the first day, with 10 of the 19 competitors coming from PDX. In between cleaning stations and busing tables, I managed to get a few action shots of Portland's finest. You will probably recognize some of them from some of your favorite cafés.
Unfortunately, I did not make it to Saturday's preliminaries or Sunday's finals, so I missed the five Portland baristas who competed on Saturday (including the eventual champion, Sam Purvis from Coava). I'll have more of a recap tomorrow.
Ashley Rauch, from Sterling Coffee Roasters, competing in her first Regional Barista Championship.
Kelly Kieft from Cellar Door Coffee Roasters
Kyle Salmi, Albina Press, waiting patiently for the judges
Marty Lopes, Barista. His boss, at far left, looks pretty nervous.
Ryan Wilbur of Stumpton put on quite a show. He ended up finishing second overall, by 0.5 points.
Ray Penrod of Public Domain was stylin'
Devin Chapman, Coava Coffee Roasters, explaining how the cherries and blood oranges blend well with his coffee. In addition to competing in the Barista Championship, Devin won the first-ever Regional Brewing Competition.
Jenny Dorsey, from Case Study Coffee, showed off her cider-making skills in addition to her barista skills.
Adam McGovern, from Sterling Coffee Roasters, holds court.
Thomas Surprenant, from Cellar Door, was the last competitor of day 1. His hops-infused espresso signature beverage was one highlight of the day.