A Report from the SCA Global Specialty Coffee Expo

Stockton Graham's Brady Butler at the Specialty Coffee ExpoLate last month, our Brady Butler attended the Global Specialty Coffee Expo (SCA) in Seattle. While his focus was on teaching Golden Cup Brewing classes, he did have an opportunity to walk the floor. We were glad he had the chance to cast his eye around the displays and report back on a few of the sights.

Says Brady:

“As an equipment guy, this was an interesting show. From custom machines to new brewers to gadgets, there was a lot to see.

From the SCA Global ExpoEspresso machine customization was on full display, with most of the roaster and café booths featuring beautiful signature espresso machines. My favorite was the custom Victoria Arduino Black Eagle that they’d made to celebrate Gianni’s 80th birthday. It was great to see some options for grinders too – the hand-blown glass hoppers at the EspressoParts booth were a welcome alternative to the usual plastic.

The trend of low-profile and small footprint espresso machines also continued this year. There was lots of buzz about the new under-counter espresso machine by MAVAM, with good reason. Even traditional machines manufacturers like Synesso had prototypes designed to lower the visible barrier between barista and customer.

From the SCA Global ExpoScales continue to show up in new places as well. Acai debuted a new automatic bean portioning system for café’s tired of weighing out little tins for their pour-over bars. Compak showed an espresso grinder which precisely grinds a specified amount of coffee into the portafilter, hands free. Of course, the Baratza Sette was back with their excellent grind-by-weight prosumer grinder for espresso or drip brewing.

Coldbrew was once again a major theme. BKON was back to show off their Storm, a superfast-supersized system to produce 100 gallons of coldbrew in 15 minutes. Several of our allied-products friends were sampling sweet and refreshing coldbrew-based drinks perfect for summer. Even cleaner specialists Urnex joined the party with a two-part complete coldbrew system cleaner – just the thing for nitro coffee systems.

To get a bit of a break from the middle of the show floor, I had a chance to stroll down the Design Lab wall of coffee packaging. This gallery of brightly-patterned, fully printed bags and uniquely-shaped printed cardboard containers is always a highlight. Our new Dilworth bag design would have looked right at home.

As always, there were so many great things to see and sample at this specialty coffee show. I can’t wait to share some of my favorites with our customers!”

With questions or to learn more about what might work best in your store or coffee shop, call 800 835 5943 or email orders@stocktongraham.com.

Cold Brewed Irish Coffee-tini

Who said St. Patrick’s Day coffee has to be hot? Sure, we don’t mind a stiff Irish Coffee in March; but we also quite like this cold coffee version as well. What’s particularly nice about this recipe is that you can cold brew the coffee ahead of time, which cuts down on the fuss when it’s time to mix and serve.

In terms of bean origin, we’ve tried all the usual suspects—Brazilian, Ethiopian, Colombian, Sumatran. They all work well, but we prefer a blend of Colombian and Sumatran, roasted medium. It seems to hold up to the vodka without overwhelming the tongue.

  • 3 oz cold brewed coffee
  • 1 oz simple syrup
  • 3 ozCoffeeTini vanilla-flavored vodka
  • 3 oz cream liqueur
  • Splash of vanilla extract
  • Sprig of mint, cinnamon stick and/or cocktail sugar

Pour coffee, vodka, simple syrup, simple syrup and vanilla extract (if using) to a cocktail shaker. Add ice to the shaker to above the level of the liquid and shake for 3 seconds. Strain the mixture into tall glasses containing ice cubes. Garnish with mint or cinnamon stick.

Cold-brewed Coffee Recipe

  1. Place the coffee grounds in a 2-quart pitcher, add the water and stir to combine. Cover with plastic wrap and let steep at room temperature for at least 12 hours and up to 1 day.
  2. Line a fine-mesh strainer with a standard coffee filter and fit it over a medium bowl. Working in batches, slowly pour the coffee into the filter until all of the liquid has passed through the strainer (the coffee will pass through in a slow stream; don’t force it through); stop when you reach the solids at the bottom of the pitcher (don’t pour them in). Discard the grounds and the contents of the strainer.
  3. Wash and dry the pitcher. Transfer the strained coffee into the pitcher. Cover and refrigerate until completely chilled, at least 2 hours or up to 5 days.