Well, I'm broke... So, you won't be seeing my full collection of Flickr images from this years USBC for awhile... At least until I've upgraded to 'Pro'. It's taken me awhile to blog about the experience because there's been so much running through my mind. All the performances were top notch. The results were flat out interesting... I'm still not sure how I feel. I feel particularly down because many of my 'heroes' of the industry didn't make finals.
I'll say this... I'm extremely proud of Deferio. It was good to see someone who is already celebrated for one skill, excel in another arena. Congrats my friend! It was also cool to see Kyle Glanville (K. Gizz) rock it as hard as possible. He managed to have one of the cleanest and most impressive performances of the competition, which, in turn, gave him the highest score of the weekend during the semi finals. This has happened before as well. Billy managed the same situation last year. Pete Licata must be mentioned for the hard work he must have put in. I saw him in January at the midwest and for him to do as well as he did here, he must have really applied himself. He looked way more confident and really did a great job. But you can read all day about the finals anywhere... let me mention some performances that need recognition...
SCOTT LUCEY! Scott rocked. Bottom line. The pride I feel for my craft went through the roof during the competition. I don't care where he placed. What he did was rad. For those who haven't heard, Scott actually pan roasted some green coffee during his presentation, cooled it, and served it in the same fashion of the Ethiopian coffee ceremony. When he was finished smoke had wafted above the stage area and the smell of roasted coffee filled the room. Chaff was all over the table cloth and it was beautiful. I would have loved to see him perform twice.
There's been a lot of talk about the machines used in the competition. I actually volunteered during the judges training and was placed on one of the machines to pull good shots... which was really really hard to do. Why? Well, later they found out the flow meters were off. The middle machine was a problem during the entire competition. It was shut down a good part of the semi finals. This very much complicated and made the process tiring... However, La Marzocco are obviously listening. The hot water button on the competition machines was different. It was a toggle switch. I'm hoping all the newer machines rolling out will feature something similar.
The La Marzocco booth also had some sweet new innovations. Anything people have been bitchin' about they worked into a 'concept' machine. Several machines all over had new improvements and ideas. There's the paddle group GS3, the teflon coated portafilters, hybrid coated group caps, the new grinder, etc. Much respect for all those cats.
Well, I'm worn out form a long weekend. It's time to go and rest. All there is to do today is hang out with our internationals, Deaton & Klaus, and finally clean the roasting works. Good times.