The Bean Scene | Food News | Seven Days | Vermont's Independent Voice

Seven Days needs your financial support!

Pin It
Favorite

The Bean Scene 

Side Dishes: Barre barista goes for broke

Making a perfect espresso isn't easy, but making a perfect espresso with two "technical judges" and four "sensory judges" looking over your shoulders might seem nigh on impossible. Yet Barre barista Elizabeth Manriquez is ready to give it a shot.

Manriquez, who co-owns Specialty Coffee Association of America's brew-offs when she lived in Seattle, well before she ever "pulled" drinks at her own joint. Last year she placed second in the first round, then bombed in the finals.

How does the fast-paced contest work? Each competitor has 15 minutes to serve three rounds of drinks - espressos, cappuccinos and creative "specialty drinks" - to the four sensory judges. Participants are marked down if they don't tamp the grounds properly, if their brews aren't consistent and if they spill a drop. Manriquez will be competing with a bean blend from Vermont Artisan Coffee, and will bring her own milk from Monument Farms. Why? "I wouldn't want to steam somebody else's milk, every milk is so different," she exclaims.

Sounds like a lot of pressure. Manriquez explains, "There's very few people in this area who are as diehard about espresso as I feel that I am. There's nobody that I can think of that I can really sit down and talk [with] about the kinds of crazy things that baristas talk about." Basically, she suggests, the event provides social networking for the coffee-obsessed: "For me, it's like a big giant geek fest, and I'm trying to meet people who are way geekier than I am."

Got something to say? Send a letter to the editor and we'll publish your feedback in print!

Pin It
Favorite

More By This Author

About The Author

Suzanne Podhaizer

Suzanne Podhaizer

Bio:
Former contributor Suzanne Podhaizer is an award-winning food writer (and the first Seven Days food editor) as well as a chef, farmer, and food-systems consultant. She has given talks at the Stone Barns Center for Agriculture's "Poultry School" and its flagship "Young Farmers' Conference." She can slaughter a... more

Comments


Comments are closed.

Since 2014, Seven Days has allowed readers to comment on all stories posted on our website. While we’ve appreciated the suggestions and insights, the time has come to shut them down — at least temporarily.

While we champion free speech, facts are a matter of life and death during the coronavirus pandemic, and right now Seven Days is prioritizing the production of responsible journalism over moderating online debates between readers.

To criticize, correct or praise our reporting, please send us a letter to the editor. Or send us a tip. We’ll check it out and report the results.

Online comments may return when we have better tech tools for managing them. Thanks for reading.

Keep up with us Seven Days a week!

Sign up for our fun and informative
newsletters:

All content © 2020 Da Capo Publishing, Inc. 255 So. Champlain St. Ste. 5, Burlington, VT 05401
Website powered by Foundation