Irish Barista Championships #IBC #loveCOFFEE

IMG_6217-Edit Hello there, friends & readers.  Haven't said much lately, but this week I visited the CATEX food catering expo here in Dublin.  Aside from being one of the largest food and catering exhibitions; showcasing catering equipment, food paraphernalia, suppliers and other food safety geekery; the best part about it was that one the events hosted within the expansive food show was the Irish Barista Championships (#IBC).

My experience in Dublin has been shaped mostly around coffee and food- Just the way I like it.  Within three weeks of my arrival, I was lucky enough to be offered a job at 3FE.   I have been learning and experiencing the specialty coffee industry… and hopefully somehow adding to it.  It has been an invaluable experience getting to know new friends and foraging for adventures.  It's really weird, some days I have to pinch myself to be reminded that this reality is true, and that I have the privilege to work in the 'thick of it' - experience coffee legacies in the making!  I know, I love to be dramatic.  But honestly, I do feel like I have a great opportunity to see the day to day goings-on of one of the (in my humble opinion) leading coffee shops in Europe.

Just a quick blog, and celebration of victories - Congratulations to Colin, Bruno, Vinicius and all the competitors. Enjoy.


to note the NOtaBLE

In-house cured duck prosciutto served with perfectly crisp baguette, arugula, and rhubarb. We could taste the basil in the greens, subtle but somewhat hidden. Salt and fat in the proscuitto was perfectly paired with the tartness of the rhubarb.

Boursin chicken ravioli- was high salt and a bit overwhelming, but buttery and rich to offset the salt.

BEST burger

This has got to be, likely, the best burger I have ever had. I don't know how they manage it, but the burger is served to order; which means you can have it medium. That is certainly unheard of in Canada. Sure, in the states and elsewhere, you may be asked how you would like it done, but the risks of ground beef are no joke! So from a food safe perspective, prett-ty scary.... but then again, it is all about managing risk. We were told that the beef is ground at 'community', have to find out more on the process before I know.

In-house filtrations system is a nice treat, because you can cleanse your palate with either flat or sparkling filtered water. Who doesn't like the added touch of sparkling water with dinner.

Overall price-point is not outlandish. It is great food, prepared to great detail and a casual atmosphere to enjoy company. (Chill chair factor!!) There are a few places to get tasty food in town and this is definitely going to be starting way high on my list.

Highlights: Stilton Cheesecake Brulée with coulee - sorry, no pics. Complex, dynamic... taste it.

Service: Personal and genuine, unpretentious

Likelihood to return: I want to go, RIGHT now. (Next: sitting at the bar, trying the lamb!)

Food/Coffee: both are pretty unparalleled for the city's restaurants 4.5/5 Must try: French press coffee.

Chillness: 4.5 chill chairs - Great bar for a drink. Open kitchen. Ideal meaning of a watercloset (WC)- washrooms are single rooms. Interesting patio surroundings but great energy!

Sidenote: Boy, can these freelancers write! Check out this article on Michael from back in 06. (this is why I know I can't write)

NOtaBLE on Urbanspoon

long ago, there was a barjam

IMG_1954 So, it's been months since I went to this event but I would like to talk about it briefly because it great fun! I don't know if you've been to a barista jam before, but this was the first one that I finally made it out to; been meaning to go for years.



It was all the greatest things put together! Friends, cool Coffee, and great cause! I love the idea of doing something to bring encouragement for people to support a cause. It's like this; make an event of something you usually would love doing but to make it even better, add LIFE! - talk about value added. (Add Life, as in do it for a cause)- namely, Coffee Kids and The Mustard Seed.


This barjam was purely a pouring contest. We learned a bit about the latte art 'throw-down' and just kinda hung out and enjoyed some good eats.

Throwing down: is when you pour some awesome art.

This evening, saw a lot of the coffee community out from all the different cafes in the area.  Even had some out of towners, like transcend coffee, Edmonton.

Upcoming: Prairies Regional Barista Championsip, August 7, 2010