Sunday, January 2, 2011

The Top 10 Most Memorable Moments of 2010

I made a list again! I was looking at 2009's list ( and I thought it would be fun to do this every year. And because I can't go to the cafe today and I have nothing else to do, I made a 2010 list...with pictures! Recycled ones though, from the old blogs. Get some ice cream and enjoy! I'll start at number 10. The rankings are personal and subjective folks, no quantitative stuff here!

10. Cafe Antonio Sessions on the Road: The Magallanes Gig (December)
- Thanks to the trio of Rane, Nestle and Mako, the Sessions peeps landed their first mall gig! It was a nice roadtrip/soundtrip for the boys from Yield Avenue, L-I-M-and E, and the roadies leaving them hungry for more out-of-town gigs. And just like magic (thanks to the Magical Hi-Ace), everybody got closer after that gig. Istarbuck!

9. Cafe Antonio Sessions XIII: Yuletide Concert and Christmas Party (December)
- Don't forget the gingerbread man-making contest and the exchange gift! This was our first Christmas party at the cafe and the first time we actually spent a fortune for an exchange gift! It was all the more memorable thanks to the hyperactive presence of our cafe friends, Segatron, LIME, and Yield Avenue.

8. Pinoy Barista Jam 1/Involvement with Pinoy Barista (August)
- Pinoy Barista changed our lives! Meeting Mam Vanessa, Sir Jerry, and the rest of the gang inspired us to work harder and love our profession all the more. It also made going to food expos and competitions seem more like a reunion for the members. Woooh!!!

7. Last Week at the Old Site/NHK's Asian Smile Documentary/Hanggang Dulo by Yield Avenue Tribute Video (May)
- We all miss the old site! Memories still fill my heart as I pass by that empty, old, yellow box. It all began there, that place provided shelter (literally!) for those who are yearning for a home in Elbi. Good thing the old site memories were immortalized in Yield Avenue and TJ's music video, Hanggang Dulo. And of course, probably the funniest and weirdest happening last year, Aki's documentary about the cafe! That documentary gave the cafe international exposure as it was shown in NHK BS-1 and NHK World. It also gave the cafe international ties, thanks to our Japanese friends, Aki, Lisa, Kumiko.and Mr. Camera Man!

6. Formation of Cafe Antonio Sessions (July)
- What began as a concept in Eric, Jabez, and Jeg's wild imaginations, became a circle of gifted musicians, diehard fans, and new friends called Cafe Antonio Sessions. The 13 gigs we did last year were both exhilarating and life-changing for the staff and our friends.

5. Staff Outing at Bato Resort, San Pablo City (May)
- This was a time of scorching heat in ELBI, that's why we decided to cool off and take a break from the issues surrounding the cafe at that time. It was a good time for us to regroup and think about our last days at the old site and prepare for the challenges that LB Square has in store for us.

4. Sigaw Music Video Shoot at Tagaytay (December)
- Out-of-town trips and vacations always inspire us. Thanks to Khitz of Yield Avenue for involving us in his band's music video. It gave us an opportunity to bond with our new and old friends, all of which are part of the big, happy family of the CAnton Gang. Thanks to Julius for letting us stay in their magnificent Tagaytay resthouse!

3. Philippine Barista Cup and Grand Barista Cup Elims (August)
- These two national barista competitions we participated in last year definitely took us to the next level of preparing coffee. Many thanks to our coach and friend, Lanz, for teaching us the tricks of the trade and for giving us valuable insights and motivation. We also met a lot of our new barista friends in these two competitions. SMX Convention Center will never be the same again!

2. Ralph Raymond "Mon" Bayani's Stint as Barista/Cashier (June to September)
- We're thankful for each day we spent working with Mon at the cafe. He's one of our assets and is famous for his unique coffee art designs, good looks, and checkered shorts. We're glad that you'e part of our family, brother! You made 2010 special for us all. Have fun with your band at Sessions!

1. The Move to  LB Square (June)
- No contest. This is definitely the most memorable moment of 2010. It changed the complexion of the game. Ever since we moved here, our circle just got bigger. New staff, longer operating hours, new hassle-rich challenges, new neighbors, new friends, etc. Undoubtedly an interesting cast of characters for CAnton's 3rd season. If not for the new site, there will be no Barista Jams and Cafe Antonio Sessions. In spite of the troubles and headaches the new site gave us, in the end it was all worth it.

Other Notable Moments

- Halloween Costume Party
- Intensive 1-Week Training for New Staff
- Judging stint at BAFBEX, La Salle, Lipa
- Interview at Bialetti Foofs
- Philippine Barista Cup Orientation at PBCA, Greenhills
- Grand Barista Cup Orientation/Practice/Semis/Finals
- Barista Jams 2 and 3
- Cafe Antonio Sessions II to XII

Last year was great, but let's make this year better! Let's go 2011!

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