Norway -Nordic Barista Cup September 2010

I had a curious time at the NBC. It's not quite my gig, since I am on the cupper/roaster end of things, and am always a little off-put by the barista thing. But this NBC had a huge origin and roaster flavor to the programme. The hospitality is great; I don't want to sound like some cynical ingrate ... but there is something uncanny about the trip. I am used to traveling to coffee origins, and I don't have much experience in European travel at all. _snip_ a few of my comments here are being misinterpreted, probably because they are unclear so i am self-censoring a bit -- Anyway, I just feel like a troll among happy elves. And not that smiling Norwegian troll either. I'm the kind of guy who was not class president and doesn't go to high school reunions, so maybe it's just that. Clearly they have a good, cheery relationship amongst the coffee shops of Oslo and the greater Nordic area. - Tom

So, I went to Oslo...
So, I went to Oslo...

...and it is filled with buildings like this. You know, galleries and castles. Of course I didn'...

Cupping with Bjornar at Kaffa roastery, Oslo
Cupping with Bjornar at Kaffa roastery, Oslo

Bjornar is the roaster at Kaffa - I met him on the Rwanda Cup of Excellence jury. With Andreas,...

Kaffa roastery in Oslo
Kaffa roastery in Oslo

All jet-lagged, the Kaffa roastery, flanked in white with near-luminescent floors, is something...

Expresso Rosast
Expresso Rosast

And they roast Expresso at Kaffa. I did not even know you could get expresso in Europe. All the...

Two probats and a Sirocco
Two probats and a Sirocco

Sample roaster overload. Some spiffy new Probat 2 barrels and surprisingly a Sirocco roaster,...

Aass Pilsener
Aass Pilsener

Probat roasting samples at Kaffa with a bottle of Aass. The other type is the draft beer, called...

New "box" at Kaffa roastery, Oslo
New "box" at Kaffa roastery, Oslo

The new meeting area in the Kaffa roastery, quite a spacious place, for the time being....

Rolling Cart
Rolling Cart

Mundane perhaps, but these scooter-carts are really cool. Kaffa had one, and seeing a 60 year...

"Igor" Solberg ?
"Igor" Solberg ?

We headed over to the well known and well regarded Solberg and Hansen, just steps away from...

Solberg cupping bowls
Solberg cupping bowls

In the Solberg lab, some nifty new cupping bowls with their new graphics ... very nice.

Ola in the Solberg cupping room
Ola in the Solberg cupping room

I had met Ola in Guatemala earlier this year, part of the quality control team at Solberg. He...

Small roaster at Solberg
Small roaster at Solberg

Solberg has these two small Probat roasters. I think they are 5 Kilo capacity each.

Covered Cooling Trays
Covered Cooling Trays

THe covered cooling trays on Solberg & Hansens small batch roasters. So cute. So effective...

Loring Versus Probat, Solberg
Loring Versus Probat, Solberg

Loring shipped a Smart Roast to Oslo just to set it up and use it for the cupping, scheduled for...

George Howell lecture at Nordic Cup
George Howell lecture at Nordic Cup

Next day was the first of the Nordic Cup. Actually it was a smaller group focused only on...