The popular Peoples Coffee stand
It was all hands on deck for last weekend’s Caffeination Festival of coffee at the TSB arena. We Roastery dwellers found ourselves catapulted out from behind our familiar machines and screens to full on customer-service and money-handling duties. I’m proud to report that I only gave the wrong change once.
Ben makes an excellent cold brew bartender. Our cold flat white and single origin black were big hits.
Despite competition with the cricket and the Wellington Wine and Food Festival, Caffeination managed to draw a good number of both coffee nerds and coffee beginners. The former group was possibly more open to giving our new nitrogenated cold brew a go than the latter – who eyed it with a bit of trepidation.
The stout-like Peoples Coffee Nitro Cold Brew
We’ve had to contain our childlike excitement at unveiling the Nitro Cold Brew for quite some time. Although it’s edging onto the radar of coffee aficionados overseas, the Peoples Coffee stand at Caffeination is the first place it’s ever been served in Wellington – and we actually haven’t heard of anyone else doing it in New Zealand. Luckily, we have obliging friends from the world of Wellington craft beer who helped enormously with equipment and advice – particularly the crew at Garage Project, but we’re also grateful to Panhead and Yeastie Boys for helping out.
The Peoples Coffee stand was 10 metres long!
To produce Nitro Cold Brew, our Peruvian Chanchamayo filter roast was infused with nitrogen gas and served on tap through a pressurised keg, eliminating acidity and giving it the creaminess of milk and a thick smooth head. It definitely resembles a certain Irish stout you may have indulged in earlier this month.
PC’s Liv Doogue chats with industry insiders Steve from Red Rabbit, Lucy from Three Beans and Barista champs finalist River
While we wanted to bring something different and unique to Peoples Coffee to the festival, we were struck by the way in which Caffeination succeeded in bringing the competitive industry together to celebrate what’s special about Wellington coffee culture as a whole. And of course there’s plenty to celebrate. The weekend brought home just how much Wellington has to offer the coffee industry internationally.
Roaster Ren rocking a killer mo
Most exhibitors had a strong emphasis on the origins of their coffees, and the crop-to-cup journey. Understanding where coffees come from and how they’re processed can change peoples’ experiences of coffee completely, and it was great to have the chance to chat with caring consumers about our fair trade producing cooperatives, and how our supply chain works.
Our retail offerings included 50g mix and match sample bags
The associated Brewer’s Cup and Barista Championship were a testament to the calibre of New Zealand’s coffee talent, and our own Constable Street barista Darryl Docherty served on the judging panel. We were reminded how lucky we are in New Zealand to have so many true coffee artists skilfully conjuring our morning flat whites.
Robbie and Lauren take a moment out
So, despite being highly over-caffeinated and sleep deprived, (and in Lauren’s case loaded up on post-surgery pain killers, and in Robbie’s case a tiny bit hungover) we had lots of fun. Thanks Caffeination, for making us proud of our coffee and of our fabulous city.
Sunrise on Saturday morning – The calm before the storm
March 31st, 2015
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