World Coffee Championships Podcast

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Summary

“We Were the Punks” traces the early days of the World Barista Championships from a rag-tag group of volunteers looking to raise specialty coffee awareness to a powerful, monetizable stage grappling with questions of scale and professionalism. Along the way, co-host Sonja Bjork Grant leads us through stories of spit buckets, snakeskin boots, backstage woes, intensifying competition preparation, and devastating debriefs through interviews with Tone Elian Liavaag, Emma Markland-Webster, Simi Benzadon, Paul Basset, and Heather Perry.

Learn more about this episode of the World Coffee Championships Podcast, made possible with the support of Victoria Arduino, including a full transcript and credits at sca.coffee/sca-news/listen/wcc-podcast/03-we-were-the-punks

Show Notes

“We Were the Punks” traces the early days of the World Barista Championships from a rag-tag group of volunteers looking to raise specialty coffee awareness to a powerful, monetizable stage grappling with questions of scale and professionalism. Along the way, co-host Sonja Bjork Grant leads us through stories of spit buckets, snakeskin boots, backstage woes, intensifying competition preparation, and devastating debriefs through interviews with Tone Elian Liavaag, Emma Markland-Webster, Simi Benzadon, Paul Basset, and Heather Perry.

Special Thanks to Our Series & Episode Sponsor, Victoria Arduino
This series of the WCC Podcast is brought to you by Victoria Arduino. Born in the early twentieth century amid social and cultural transformation, Victoria Arduino broke with tradition and focused on progress, a mission it carries forward today. Victoria Arduino advances coffee knowledge and innovates across design, technology, and performance to produce machines that nurture coffee professionals' passion for espresso excellence. For more information, visit victoriaarduino.com. Victoria Arduino: Inspired by your passion.

We’d like to thank Sonja Bjork Grant, our co-host for this episode, and our interviewees for their time in sharing their stories about the early days of the World Barista Championship, in order of appearance: Tone Elian Liavaag, Emma Markland-Webster, Simi Benzadon, Paul Basset, and Heather Perry. Thanks, too, to Igloo Media for use of audio from “Living Coffee with Paul Basset.”

For a full list of those who helped across the entire series, a year-long effort, click here. Series 01 of the World Coffee Championships Podcast is a coffee documentary series produced by James Harper of Filter Productions for the Specialty Coffee Association.

Learn more about this episode of the World Coffee Championships Podcast, made possible with the support of Victoria Arduino, including a full transcript and credits at sca.coffee/sca-news/listen/wcc-podcast/03-we-were-the-punks.

What is World Coffee Championships Podcast?

Where did the World Coffee Championships come from? How did things go wrong? How were they fixed? Across six episodes, we'll hear from people who come together every year to celebrate specialty coffee and push the industry forward, exploring the role competitions play in different communities and recognizing the large network of volunteers who make these annual events possible.

While we're disappointed that the competitions aren't happening this year, we hope this podcast will help us feel more connected. And, if this is the first time you've ever heard of the World Coffee Championships, this series will give you an entertaining window into this world and why so many of us love it so much.