Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Coffee Gets Inspired By Music

* This week the cafe will host two events that we are most passionate about: Barista Jam 2 (with Pinoy Barista) on Thursday and Cafe Antonio Sessions VII on Saturday. We did this barista jam-Cafe Antonio sessions combo just 3 weeks ago. I guess everyone just got really excited and inspired so we decided to make this a regular thing. This will help us make the cafe become a favorite venue of both baristas and musicians to showcase their skills and express their creativity for free!

* I saw an article online at Coffeegeek.com about what a barista jam is. It's an example of how the coffee industry takes its cues from music. Here's an excerpt from the article:

So what is a Jam? The premise is modeled after a musician’s jam session. That informal event is usually a group of musicians who get together on a regular basis to play tunes. Some bring stacks of “fake books”, books that have main melodies of jazz standard tunes alphabetically arranged for easy reference and ideas, other musicians would come with their ‘axe’, a musicians’ instrument as it is affectionately called. Still others would come just to ‘dig the scene’. Imaginative, free ideas of chord structure, phrasing, notation and tone would flow like wine or other inebriants that were often available and things always got a little wild as the evening wore on.

Jams were free form enough but some structure provided a framework generally someone would call a song, others would chime in and solo and everyone “jammed”. The song would last as long as the ideas did.  

A Barista jam is an assemblage with the same sense of inspiration and exploration; only the medium (or vehicle) is specialty coffee in general, and espresso in particular. Rather than musicians grouped together talking about riffs, scale changes, half notes and block cords, we have Baristi talking about shot times, tamping techniques, espresso blends and grinding burrs. Musical axes have been replaced with tampers, steam pitchers and beans. If this sounds like a science experiment to you, it is a little bit like one. Lab coats have given way to aprons. Loosely defined a jam is: anytime 2 or more Barista come together over an espresso machine to challenge themselves, or any time there is a gathering of several Baristi and machines all under one roof.



* After endless rounds of UNO Stack-O (trust me, it's grueling and exhausting), Dan Sta. Romana of Drmsr Photography bested 3 other teams to win the 1st UNO Stack-O Tournament last Monday sponsored by Espaleklek and Jethro Benaiah Osio at Cafe Antonio, Los Banos. Dan walked away with Php 2000 cash and is now in Tokyo, Japan taking a vacation. Congratulations! Other participating teams were Marisse Bonita of Mavericks, Gelo & Kaye of UPLB, and Jeg & Jabez of Cafe Antonio, Los Banos. 

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