Showcasing service, hospitality, coffee quality, and related craft industries, BLOOM will be broadcast throughout the United States.
BY KAYLA GAGNE
SPECIAL TO BARISTA MAGAZINE
Photo courtesy of the Specialty Coffee Association
BLOOM is a unique coffee event organized by the Barista Guild of America that takes place physically in one place, but is transmitted to various satellite events taking place throughout the United States. The latest BLOOM event will take place Tuesday in Providence, R.I., with satellite events in Knoxville, Tenn.; Portland, Ore.; Los Angeles; and Seattle. (Exact information on times and locations of the satellite events are listed below.)
Tuesday’s event in Providence will be held throughout the day at the WaterFire Events Center, and will feature lectures, discussions, workshops, and tours. If you’re in Providence, however, the fun begins tonight at 6 p.m. at Trinity Brewhouse, where attendees will come together for pub trivia and general meeting and greeting.
The meat of BLOOM commences at 9 a.m. on Tuesday, with a welcome from BGA Chair (and Providence local) Todd Mackey, followed by panels and lectures including:
- “More than Mochas: Exploring Chocolate and Coffee Together” by Carla Martin, founder and executive director of Fine Cacao and Chocolate Institute, a nonprofit organization devoted to promoting, educating, and sharing knowledge of the art that is fine chocolate.
- “Process to Possibility: Exploring Potential in Varying Coffee Process at Origin,” a panel discussion featuring Mayita Mendez of Irving Farm Coffee, Jamie Isetts of Merit Coffee, Cheryl Kingan of Café Grumpy, and Justin Enis of Bolt Coffee, moderated by Todd Mackey of Olam Coffee.
- “Managing Conflict and Emotional Behavior” with E. Michele Ramsey, associate professor of communication arts & sciences and women’s studies at Pennsylvania State University.
- “Retailer to Roaster: The Transition to Roasting Your Own Coffee,” a panel discussion featuring Kyle Bellinger of Neat Coffee, Angela Bryant of Primer Coffee, Christian Johnson of Spyhouse Coffee, and moderator Candice Madison of Irving Farm Coffee, discussing making the transition to roasting your own coffee.
Of course, it wouldn’t be a coffee gathering without an awesome party to follow the great content: La Marzocco and Bolt Coffee are excited to co-host the official BLOOM After Party from 5:30–7:30 p.m. at the WaterFire Events Center.
For those gathered in Providence, the educational content and networking opportunities continue on Wednesday with the following optional activities:
10 a.m.: KNEAD Doughnuts—Facility tour and tasting (limited spots)
11 a.m.: Seven Stars Bakery—Facility tour followed by coffee tasting and pastry pairing (limited spots)
Finally, BLOOM will wrap up with a latte art throwdown and party Wednesday at 7 p.m. at New Harvest Coffee + Spirits.
BLOOM takes pride in the outcomes, ideas, challenges, solutions, and takeaways from the event. Everything is reviewed and recorded, and can be accessed or distributed for future education so the coffee community can grow together. The goal in creating these events and combining minds on coffee is to make for an even more successful, exciting industry. BLOOM seeks to teach folks more about the industry while having a great time connecting and networking with others.
SATELLITE EVENT INFORMATION (Register for satellite events HERE)
Portland Roasting Coffee
815 SE Oak St.
Portland, OR 97214
Bloom Event: 5:30 p.m., March 8
Vienna Coffee Company
318 North Gay St.
Knoxville, TN 37917
TNT: 8 p.m., March 8
Bloom Event: 10 a.m., March 9
MiiR Flagship Location
3400 Stone Way N
Seattle, WA 98103
Bloom Event: 12 p.m., March 10
Spaces at The Row
777 S. Alameda St., #220
Los Angeles, CA 90021
Bloom Event: 4:30–7:30 p.m., March 10
Registration for BLOOM in Providence is still open! https://www.eventbrite.com/e/bloom-2018-tickets-41842883190
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Kayla Gagne is a Pawtucket, R.I., native living out her dream in coffee. She has been in the industry for seven years and is passionate about educating others. She currently works at Downeast Coffee Roasters in Pawtucket, which is a third-generation, family-owned business that takes pride in providing specialty coffee. Kayla works in quality control, approving green coffee samples, roasting, and formulating blends, as well as assisting in demos and trainings as a level-one-certified barista through the Specialty Coffee Association. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.