Painting Over The Craic

Those of you who have visited our Sussex Terrace location will have no doubt noticed the now iconic monthly illustrations that have been popping up over the last year. All the images have been the work of our good bud Stephen McCarthy who is not only an extremely talented illustrator but also one of our longest standing customers from way back in the day.

The story of how the collaboration came about though is one that may not be so obvious, and surprisingly starts with something as mundane as three phase power. Really.

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When we help people setting up coffee shops there's always an unexpected problem that arises somewhere along the way and it was no different for us when we were fitting out the shop on Sussex Terrace. Our particular problem was that the power we required to run all of our equipment was such that it was tripping all of the switches on the street. Not something we were particularly pleased with. 

The only solution we were offered was upgrading the power to a brand new three phase supply, at a not insignificant cost, but we had no choice in the matter and pressed on. However, when the day came to install the new board, what came with it was a giant silver box standing 6ft by 5ft and 2ft deep that stood like a big metal elephant in the middle of the courtyard. 

Over the years we've had setbacks big and small, but we've always tried to approach each problem with the hope that there may be a silver lining, or in this case a less silver one. We knew that we needed to cover it up so we decided we'd go one step further and make it beautiful, and that's where Steve came in.

Steve's job was to deliver us a mural for the beginning of every month, starting last September, that would give us something more aesthetically pleasing to look at than the metal box it covered. Each month was to be inspired by that month but each month needed to be different. This made our space more beautiful, provided him with a monthly creative challenge and over the course of the year became one of the most interesting projects we've ever undertaken. To say that Steve nailed it would be something of an understatement and the popularity of his work led us gradually on to the next phase of the project. 

We hooked up with Workgroup and charged them with making a calendar out of the 12 illustrations that Steve had put together that was both useful and beautiful. Steve has also sent us a few lines on each piece to explain what was going on in his head at the time and it features on each month's upper side. We signed off on the print last month and right now in our roastery we have a limited edition run of only 1,000 calendars that we are releasing into the wild today. There will be no more printed after that.

Each calendar contains all 12 of Steve's illustrations printed on the finest stock we could find but what makes them extra cool is the perforated lines. Every print tears out neatly and will fit in a standard record-sleeve frame that you can find in most local Swedish conglomerate furniture stores. 

The calendars are available in all of our shops, on our retail site and to all of our wholesale customers as of right now. We're glad that we got these to market in time for Christmas but moreover we're delighted that somehow we managed to take some big bad metal news and turn it into something positive, and have some craic along the way. 

3fe Coffee Roasters: What we did next....

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In the Beginning 

In late 2010 on foot of an old email thread regarding Maraschino Cherries (really), I invited Fiona McHugh of Fallon & Byrne down to my new “shop”, 3fe in the Twisted Pepper nightclub on Dublin's Middle Abbey Street. Fallon & Byrne was, and is, the go-to place for all things culinary and having recently decided that wholesale coffee was the way forward for me, I thought I'd take a punt at picking up the most prestigious account in the city as my first client. 

Unfortunately, the night before we were due to meet for an early coffee, a student night by the name of “Mr. Jones” went off like never before in the Twisted Pepper and despite assurances that the place would be spotless by the next morning, I arrived to find the place covered in rubbish and the floor sticky with whatever concoctions they were drinking the previous night. This was not good.

When Fiona arrived I had barely any time to clean and I'll never forget the fear in her eyes as she ducked under the shutter into a dark nightclub that stank of dancing sweat and Buckfast. I led her to the only clean chair at the bar and apologised for the state of the place. I explained to her what we were trying to achieve with 3fe and where we wanted to go. Then I made her a coffee.

Fiona, still weary of her grim surroundings, took one sip of the cappuccino, pointed at it and said “Wow. We need to be making coffee like this”. We had ourselves a wholesale business.

Mastering the boring stuff

Within a few months we picked up a few other accounts like Roasted Brown, L. Mulligan Grocer, Hollands of Bray and as they grew so did our own business. When Brother Hubbard opened in 2011 the city's coffee scene was really starting to bubble and since then we've been incredibly lucky to be part of an industry that's gone from a niche tipple to an everyday staple.

Wholesale has always been a difficult gig but a challenge we've always enjoyed. In the early days (pre-Mythos!) we spent most of our time re-dialing grinders and delivering 100's of kg's a week in my now departed Peugeot 307 (the suspension gave way when the Bolivian's landed).

At the time there were few, if any, people who self-identified as baristas and so it was a slow process taking on wholesale customers because the skill set wasn't there to ensure the coffee would be well-represented. It was for that reason that we initially only took wholesale customers in Dublin (and Bray!) because we wanted to keep a hold on quality as much as possible.

As more and more people came on board with specialty coffee we also started to see more people returning home from cities with more developed coffee scenes than Dublin's, with better coffee knowledge and standards. At this point we decided to broaden our horizons and soon had coffee shops like Established in Belfast, Suas in Ennis, Urban Grind in Galway and Arch in Waterford, all blazing a trail outside of Dublin.

Starting small not only gave us a chance to ensure the coffee we shipped was of sufficient quality, but also allowed us to get good at all the non-coffee things we did. The learning curve in setting up systems for invoicing, boxing, shipping and all the other mundane things we do from day to day are equally as important as the coffee and we were starting with zero experience in all these fields.

Achievability is such a crucial factor in growing any business and we just about found a balance between fast growth and not breaking ourselves.

At the time, this managed growth felt like we were going too slowly but when we look back it meant we went much faster. We rarely lost wholesale customers, we built strong relationships and we got really good at the stuff you don't post on Instagram.

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Next Steps

In recent months it's dawned on us that we've reached the next step of wholesale growth that we need to make: International Wholesale. Until now we've only been focused in Ireland and although we've done the odd one-off here and there internationally, it's never been our focus.

Our growth in Ireland has been extra remarkable when we consider it’s a country with a population not much bigger than Berlin and although that meant we had a smaller market to work in, it also made us more focused on our approach, especially with regard to service, quality, and viability.

As the Irish Market grew though we soon began to see our awesome enemies at the likes of Coffee Collective, The Barn, Koppi, Five Elephant, Tim Wendelboe, La Cabra, et al nibble away at our market whilst we left theirs untouched. It's great having diversity in our city's coffee scene but the time has now come to add 3fe to the diversity in other country's coffee scene and bring what we do best to those cities and towns.

We’ve now been roasting for four years and in that time we’ve built a strong repertoire of great farms that we source from year on year that are special and unique to us.

Steve, Monika and Simon have done incredible work to insure that 3fe’s coffee’s are reflective of the type of offering we want to be able to roast and the quality of what we ship out is of an incredibly high standard. The last few months especially have shown us that our reputation as roasters is now on par with the reputation we’ve built as retailers, and the offering that we can present to our wholesale customers is both attractive and diverse. 

Shipping International

Today we launch our international wholesale business and take on the next stage of growth and development for our business. We're eager to talk to you about your guest or staple coffee if you're interested in working with us drop us a mail [email protected]

By this day next year we're hoping to have coffee in every large European city and at least every major international city. It's quite an exciting time for us.

In the coming weeks we'll be announcing a series of international events and hopefully you'll be seeing our coffee in hoppers the world over. We're excited about meeting some of the best coffee shop owners from around the globe and we can assure you there'll be no sticky floors this time.

 

7 Days of AeroPress - Day 7 - Meet our Competitors (pt.3)

 
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Craig Walsh
1) Briefly tell us about yourself.
My name is Craig, I live in Bray and I've been working in 3fe since 2013. I'm now responsible for equipment and machine sales in 3fe.

2) Have you ever entered a coffee competition before?
I entered my first competition in 2012, the Irish Barista Championship. I'd only been working in coffee for a few weeks so naturally I didn't do too good. In 2014, I came second place in the Irish AeroPress Championship, but my biggest success in coffee competitions was in 2015, when I came first in the Coffee Throwing Championship. 

3) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
Easy to use and travel. easy to store. cheap

4) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
The power to automatically dose coffee.. 

5) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
I'd visit Costa rica. We've worked with some amazing farms in Costa Rica and I'd love to visit one farm in particular, Farami de Dota, which provide us with spectacular coffee every year. 

6) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 things would you bring?
A TV, dvd player and boxset of friends.

7) Describe yourself in 3 words.
Competitive, competitive and competitive.


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Moyses Allem
1) Briefly tell us about yourself.
My name is Moyses Allem. I'm from Brazil. I have been working with coffee for about 14 years, in London, Brazil and Ireland. Currently working in Dukes Coffee Co in Cork city.

2) Have you ever entered a coffee competition before?
It's not my first time. I participated in some coffee competitions in London and Ireland. Some went really well, others not so much, but always having fun!!!!

3) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
I think it is easy and practical to use. It's never been my favourite method of brewing, but practicing I was surprised with the results that you can achieve!

4) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
I would make good coffee grow in any weather conditions or altitude, so I could have a coffee plant in my backyard!!!

5) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
I would love to go to Ethiopia, the begining off the coffee history!

6) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 things would you bring?
A good coffee, a hammock and a boat!

7) Describe yourself in 3 words.
Focused, friendly, calm


Luke Dowling
1) Briefly tell us about yourself.
My name is Luke Dowling and I've been working in the Irish coffee industry for over 4 years now. I've done everything from working in the busiest café in Ireland, to roasting, to competing at the national level while working with some of the best Baristas in the business. Currently I'm plying my trade with CoffeeAngel after taking a break from the coffee world and rediscovering the love I always had for coffee.

2) Have you ever entered a coffee competition before?
I took part in the 2014 Irish Barista Latte Art Competition. I didn't place where I wanted, but I was very happy with my performance. 

3) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
Its portable, easy to use, and most importantly; there are dozens of ways to adjust the taste of your coffee- whether it be inverted or regular that most other brewing methods don't possess.

4) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
I would love to have the ability to roast coffees by holding the beans in my hands! I would be able to roast my own coffee, in my own hands, at my convenience! Saving money would be a bonus!!!

5) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
I would love to visit Peru and sit drinking some fine coffee while looking over The Sacred Valley at Machu Picchu!

6) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 things would you bring?
A good knife, flint and a survival book... I'm going to need it!! Hopefully by some stroke of luck there are coffee plants on the islands and I could at the very very worst make my own coffee somehow!!!

7) Describe yourself in 3 words.
Crazy, Random, Ridiculous


Natalia Biss
1) Briefly tell us about yourself.
Hi guys!
Polish girl trying to get used to life in Ireland for 6 months now, Barista in Coffeeangel, "extract more" friendly and dogs friendly -> well that's me-Natalia; still asking myself what I'm doing in Ireland! So far, I'm super happy to be here!

2) Have you ever entered a coffee competition before?
I recently took part in "The Liberties Brewers Cup Competition" and placed 4th.

3) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
Playing with temperatures is my thing: that's why I like aeropress the most. 

4) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
Speaking about coffee superpowers -> I wish I could talk with coffee beans : "Hi little fella, what do you prefer?  89C? 93C?" 

5) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
Guatemala comes first to my mind as I would love to visit a coffee plantation there considering it was the origin of the first filter I've ever had.

6) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 things would you bring?
If I was trapped on a desert island I would bring roller blades (cause it makes sense with sand around, right?), my dog ( he has a passport already -.-) and access to Spotify. 

7) Describe yourself in 3 words.
Extra hot decaf ;) 


Karol Adamski 
1) Briefly tell us about yourself.
Hi all, my name is Karol, polish lad, coffee man in Coffee Angel

2) Have you ever entered a coffee competition before?
This is my first coffee competition, and the reason why I'm here is ironic aversion to aeropress, this is not my favorite coffee weapon, and although im not a competing type of a guy, I thought that to take a part in such gig will give me some super powers, or at least some will to spend a bit of time with the aeropress, and who knows maybe I will eventually understand whats so cool about the aeropress :)

3) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
See answer 2. 

4) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
I would love to have aeropress superpowers today, but normally its roasting coffee powers :)

5) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
Kenya, obviously for my unconditional love for coffees from that region, but I would place Colombia at the same level, both for cup qualities, I'm not sure which country would be first to visit if ever, but my guts drag me rather to Colombia, for some reason... :)

6) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 things would you bring?
1 container of coffee, same size container of wine, ale cigis :). 

7) Describe yourself in 3 words.
Honestly I dont know how to describe myself in 3 words. I rather use some sentence: "Remember that failure is an event, not a person" :). Zig Ziglar :). 


Tudorin Gabriel
1) Briefly tell us about yourself.
Hi, my name is Tudorin Gabriel. I am from Romania and i work as a head barista in KC Peaches on Nassau street.

2) Have you ever entered a coffee competition before?
It is my first competition,so wish me luck.

3) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
My favorite thing about Aeropress is: easy to use -easy to carry.

4) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
"I hate when people make my coffee. You dont know how much milk I like, or how much sugar I take... You dont know what I have been through." ... A superpower like this, to please the customers!

5) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
Kenya or Ethiopia- big fan of their coffees.

6) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 things would you bring?
Solar electric generator, Satelite TV with Sky sports and Gordon Ramsay -to call him donkey.

7) Describe yourself in 3 words.
I suffer from OCD (obssesive coffee disorder).


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Sergiy Polimashev
1) Briefly tell us about yourself.
My name is Sergiy Polimashev, I live in Dublin, originally from Ukraine and working in CoffeeAngel CHQ.

2) Have you ever entered a coffee competition before?
Aeropress 2015, 2016, but didn't get any place.

3) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
Simple, easy to use any place

4) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
Brew best quality every  time

5) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
Guatemala,  Kenya , Ethiopia ,Brasil   

6) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 things would you bring?
Knife, girls and coffee set :)

7) Describe yourself in 3 words.
Spontaneous  , extreme ,  Laziness


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1) Briefly tell us about yourself.
My name is Gemma Gaughan, I'm 21, I've worked in coffee for the past 3 years now, I'm from Dublin. I currently work in Gather&Gather and used to work in coffeeangel.

2) Have you ever entered a coffee competition before?
I've competed just once before in the Liberties brewers cup in Legit Coffee a few months ago.

3) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
My favourite thing about the aeropress is how quick and easy it is, it's so compact and you can bring it anywhere! 

4) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
My coffee superpower would be the ability to make a perfect brew while seatbelt hungover (which is something I've tried and failed miserably at so many times before) 

5) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
I'd most like to visit Honduras because a friend of mine went there for a botany trip and the pictures he took were so beautiful, it's the one place that appeals to me most. 

6) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 things would you bring?
If I was trapped on a desert island I'd bring my dog, my toothbrush and my Harry Potter books.

7) Describe yourself in 3 words.
Witty, generous and empowered.


 

7 Days of AeroPress - Day 6 - Meet our Competitors (pt.2)

 

Luis Alvarez
1) Briefly tell us about yourself.
Luis Alvarez from Venezuela, I work in Dublin Barista School for the last 2 years and before that I used to work for Butlers chocolates. Originally a Mechanical Engineer in my country.

2) Have you ever entered a coffee competition before?
Yes, I've been a finalist for the last 3 years in the Irish Latte Art (2014, 2015, 2016) Championship.
Irish Barista Championship 2015 competitor.
Irish Aeropress Championship 2016 Semi-finalist.
Sensory judge in the Irish Brewers Cup 2017

3) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
That my "on location" pictures look way cooler when I'm brewing an Aeropress. (Translation: portable)

4) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
I wanna be able to read the TDS with my eyes, Superman style. (Those refractometers are bloody expensive)

5) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
Venezuela, so I can go and visit my family. Would love to do a trip to coffee regions of my country. 

6) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 things would you bring?
A MASSIVE yacht with a bunch of people, a captain to navigate that yatch and get me the hell out of there, a lot of rum.

7) Describe yourself in 3 words.
Half-elf, Colour-blind, Ginger.


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Marta Wincenty-Cichy
1) Briefly tell us about yourself.
Originally I am from Poland, but I've been living in Ireland for over 4 years. I work in Dunnes Stores Head office as a coffee kiosk manager. 

2) Have you ever entered a coffee competition before?
This will be my first time in coffee competition. 

3) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
It's portable.

4) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
Cup warmer in hand to keep my coffee hot for longer. Such a mummy dream ;) 

5) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
Hawai. Because it's Hawai ;) 

6) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 things would you bring?
Husband, baby and aeropress. Or no! I need grinder too, so no husband ;) 

7) Describe yourself in 3 words.
Brewing mum-photographer. 


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Hrvoje Vincek
1) Briefly tell us about yourself.
Hailing from Croatia, I moved to Dublin two years ago and got into speciality coffee. Didnt know Dublin has such a coffee scene and I'm very lucky to be here and see how the scene is still growing. Worked in bars before to pay my college but I couldn't be in a cubicle job, so I decided to stick with a position behind bar and replaced alcohol with coffee. Aeropressing myself two years and still liking it. Currently working in the funkiest coffee shop in Dublin called Pot Bellied Pig. 

2) Have you ever entered a coffee competition before?
Attended Fun and Tipsy Vice Irish Coffee Championship 2016. It was more about to see and feel the thing about coffee comp. For the recipe i was using aeropess but in the end i messed up and came 5th. Dont mix coffee and whiskey. ;)

3) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
I can work on my triceps. Push it real good.

4) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
To do useful things faster with more energy not only stupid:)

5) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
Ethiopia of course. its clear for itself.

6) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 things would you bring?
Decks, longboard and AeroPress.

7) Describe yourself in 3 words.
Tall, Yugoslavian male.


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Wil Gilbert
1) Briefly tell us about yourself.

Wil Gilbert, from France, living in Cork, barista currently looking for new challenges.

2) Have you ever entered a coffee competition before?
Well just one Cork Aeropress Comp few weeks ago and did well...

3) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
The endless coffee extraction possibilities.

4) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
Super-sweet-spot-extraction.

5) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
Guatemala - awesome coffee and culture.

6) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 things would you bring?
A book ( any Jules Verne) ...well 3 books it is a desert island so better not spoil it.

7) Describe yourself in 3 words.

Passionate (about coffee...), Creative


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Szymon Urbanczyk
1) Briefly tell us about yourself.

My name is Szymon Urbanczyk. I'm 27 years old. I am from Poland, I live in Ireland for the last four years. Started off in coffee 3 years ago with no experience and never drank coffee before. I currently work for Bear Market IFSC branch. 

2) Have you ever entered a coffee competition before?
This is my first coffee competition.

3) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
It is hard to make a bad coffee using aeropress and it is easy to clean after. Very convenient for travel. 

4) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
Enjoying of espresso is a superpower for me. I mean I like espressos, but to just simply enjoy it, and drink it with pleasure, like a filter coffee.

5) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
I would choose Tanzania, but not for coffee reason. I would like to climb on Kilimanjaro mountain.

6) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 things would you bring?
I would bring a plane, the book "Flying for Dummies" and a lot of fuel.

7) Describe yourself in 3 words.
Lazy.


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Reda Majauskyte
1) Briefly tell us about yourself.
My name is Reda. I am Training Manager & Barista Trainer in Butlers chocolate cafes. I love coffee and cacao. My daily routine is all about the progress – not about being the best – and about getting better continuously. I love to work hard coaching/helping other competitors in coffee competitions. I love to travel and learn more about the coffee industry around the world, keep improving my sensory skills, knowledge and get involve in any coffee projects.

2) Have you ever entered a coffee competition before?
I am current Cup Tasting Champion of Ireland. It was a big challenge for myself to represent Ireland in the World of Coffee Event in Budapest.

3) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
Make our life enjoyable (coffee anywhere) during our journey in any part of the world 

4) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
One day of the week I would call coffee day.

5) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
I love any good coffee, but my favourite is Kenyan coffee

6) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 things would you bring?
My dog Max, Elvis and water :)

7) Describe yourself in 3 words.
Dog&Coffee lover, Ambitious,  Crazy&Fun


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Matthew Forde Connolly
1) Briefly tell us about yourself.

Matthew Forde Connolly, Bray Bré, Five Points.

2) Have you ever entered a coffee competition before?
First time competitor. hopefully won't get stage fright and under perform.

3) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
My favorite thing about the AeroPress is how easy it is to throw at people who ask for soya.

4) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
My superpower would have to be being able to pull perfect espresso by flicking a bean into cups.

5) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
The coffee producing country I would most like to visit is Mexico. because.. Tequila.

6) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 things would you bring?
 I would bring a bag of cans, cigarettes and some chunes.

7) Describe yourself in 3 words.
Pint of Smithwicks.


Seivijus Matiejunas
1) Briefly tell us about yourself.
9 years ago, I joined the coffee world. I started as barista and then I joined barista trainers team in Bewleys. I love to compete and coach/help other competitors in various national and world championships including Latte Art, Cup Tasters, Barista & Aeropress. 

2) Have you ever entered a coffee competition before?
I started to compete (Barista, Latte Art, Cupping & Aeropress champ) in 2011. A few years in a row I represented Lithuania and Ireland in World Latte Art championships. In 2016 I won Irish Cup Tasters Championship. I have never won Aeropress Championship yet.

3) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
Its unbreakable, fits in my bag and easy to brew.

4) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
I would love to go to Ethiopia. The place where coffee began. 

5) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 things would you bring?
Water, food and coffee. 

6) Describe yourself in 3 words
Stubborn, passionate & never gives up.

 

7 Days of AeroPress - Day 5 - Meet our Competitors (pt.1)

 
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Richard Finney.
1) Briefly tell us about yourself.

PwC Accountant turned wine shop/deli/coffee shop owner in The Counter, Letterkenny. Originally from Belfast but dragged to Donegal via marriage. Occasional barista in our coffee shop but mostly filter coffee alchemist whilst pretending to work next door in our shop.

2) Have you ever entered a coffee competition before?
Coffee comp virgin. Go easy on me.

3) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
Portability. It’s my go to brewing method for holidays and travel.

4) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
Removing the bitterness out of unreasonable customers.

5) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
Burundi. Some cracking stuff coming out of there.

6) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 things would you bring?
Spotify. Coffee. A Genie in a Bottle.

7) Describe yourself in 3 words.
Nordy. Bald. Loveable.


Thomas Gallo.
1) Briefly tell us about yourself.
My name is Thomas Gallo, 24 years old French lad. Working as a barista at Cloud Picker Coffee in Dublin. 

2) Have you ever entered a coffee competition before?
First time competing in the coffee industry! And really looking forward to it!! 

3) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
For me, the Aeropress is the easiest and fastest way to get a great cup of coffee whenever you desire it. It gives you a great brew and it's quite simple to use and so affordable for everyone!

4) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
Get a coffee farm right in front of my home, so you can grow, roast and brew whenever you want. But we're in Ireland so... 

5) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
I'm really looking forward to visit Nicaragua one day! I love to travel and discover new countries and cultures, and I once had a great cup of coffee from there, so I'll give it a go. 

6) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 things would you bring?
An Oasis album, Wine (obviously), Bread and cheese (as they match each other). 

7)Describe yourself in 3 words. 
Happy, traveller, fun.


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Daniel Horbat
1) Briefly tell us about yourself.
Hi, my name is Daniel Horbat and I'm from Romania. I currently work in Network cafe as head barista.

2) Have you ever entered a coffee competition before?
I competed in many competitions and my best results are:
-Irish cup tasting champion 2016
-Irish latte art finalist 2016
-22th place at the World Cup tasters 2016 Shanghai
-AeroPress and brewing competitor 2016-2017

3) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
Very easy to use and handy for travel.

4) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
Coffee super power:)..good one:) To brew with cold water and extract the coffee fast :)

5) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
I would like to visit the geisha estate from Panama....everybody knows why.

6) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 things would you bring?
My cross fit gear, my beard balm and 50+sunscreen for my tattoos.

7)Describe yourself in 3 words. 
BARISTA WITH ATTITUDE (B.W.A)


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Stephen McCabe
1) Briefly tell us about yourself.
Hello my name is Stevie McCabe. I grew up in North county Dublin and I now live in the city. I’m currently the manager of 3fe on Lower Grand Canal Street, I’m a snappy dresser and terrible person with good hair. 

2) Have you ever entered a coffee competition before?
This will be my first coffee competition outside of some in house competitions and quite a few latte art throw downs. Have not been crowned a winner of any yet. 

3) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
It was the first piece of coffee equipment I bought and I find that to be often the case for people just getting into coffee these days. So as a gateway into brewing I think its a good way to start. Also they don’t break so easy. Tough little tubes. 

4) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
I would like to produce cows milk. 

5) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
I would love to visit Kenya and hit up Kebel Konga to visit the great Dr. Brian. He keeps growing those tasty coffees and I love to drink them. 

6) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 things would you bring?
Sunglasses, a personal chef that can double as a friend and a hammock. 

7)Describe yourself in 3 words. 
Sleepy Fancy Boy.


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Marcin Kotwicki
1) Briefly tell us about yourself.
My name is Marcin (Mairtin/Martin) and I live in Dublin City, previously in Galway. I've been working in the coffee industry since 2009 and I am a member of SCA since 2015. Currently working at LEGIT Coffee Co. on Meath Street, Dublin 8.

2) Have you ever entered a coffee competiton before?
I competed in Irish Latte Art Championship in 2015 & 2016 and the Irish Brewers Cup this year with no luck in both competitions ;), but I did get silver in the Irish Aeropress last year :)

3) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
Its light and portable (I take it on every holiday!)

4) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
Coffee gives me superpowers, I don't need anything extra!

5) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
Kenya - my fav coffee.

6) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 things would you bring?
Alladin's lamp, Golden Fish and Kenyan Coffee ;)

7) Describe yourself in 3 words. 
Curious, Ambitious, Obstinate.


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Kevin Powell
1) Briefly tell us about yourself.
Kevin Powell, Dublin, Meet me in the Morning.

2) Have you ever entered a coffee competition before?
This is my second time entering the aeropress comp and last year Colin had it out for me.

3) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
That each year I get to use it in a competition.

4) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
The ability to easily win coffee competitions.

5) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
Vietnam, more for the weather and food and I hear there's some good cheese there.

6) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 things would you bring?
Cat, cat food and a second cat (cats can drink salt water)

7) Describe yourself in 3 words. 
Large, bearded, chef.


Paul Hickey
1) Briefly tell us about yourself.
Paul, from Celbridge and living in D8. Not working in coffee, just obsessed with it! Work as a hospital pharmacist to pay the bills/for coffee.

2) Have you ever entered a coffee competitio before?
First time entering a competition, looking forward to getting chucked out in the first round!

3) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress? 
It's so easy to clean! It makes whopper brews too I guess.

4) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
Instant soft water because the water in work is muck. 

5) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why? 
Rwanda. Producing some of my favourite coffees in the past couple of years and a country looking to start anew after it's recent past. 

6) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 things would you bring?
 A boat, petrol and a map.

7) Describe yourself in 3 words.  
Lower your expectations.


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Gary Hollywood
1) Briefly tell us about yourself.
My name is Gary Hollywood, I'm from Dublin. I've been a Barista for around 10 years and I have worked for Bewley's for 7 and a half of those years. I'm eclectic when it comes coffee and music, no matter what the origin/region/process or the genre/artist/song is, as long as it's well made, it's perfect for me!

2) Have you ever entered a coffee competition before?
Latte art and Cup Tasters 3 times (didn't get far). Competed for the first time at the Irish Aeropress championships last year, and won... so I got to represent my country, in my home town at the world's last June. 

3) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
It saves lives, or at least hangovers (brought mine to the hotel for after my mates stag!) everyone wanted my coffee!!

4) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
A TDS tongue/Refractometer vision! Exact extraction measurement by taste and sight! 

5) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
Nicaragua. Bewley's has a strong relationship with a particular farm there and it would be something special to see, having met some of their producers when they visited Ireland at World of Coffee.

6) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 things would you bring?
Desert island? Should I say my wife? No...?

7) Describe yourself in 3 words. 
Friendly Neighbourhood Barista...


 

7 Days of AeroPress - Day 4 - The Poster.

 

You will have probably seen The Irish AeroPress Championship 2017 poster on Instagram, Facebook and twitter, as well as throughout cafes across Ireland. With its bold and vibrant colours, its pretty hard to miss! 
Our AeroPress Poster was designed and printed by Or Studio, a design & Risograph print studio based in Dublin, founded by Kate Brangan and Jo Little. The studio acts as a space to experiment with process and collaborate with other designers, illustrators and artists and are the only studio in Ireland to own and operate a Riso printer. While generating their own content and projects, they also take on client work, such as our beautiful poster. The Aeropress Championship 2017 posters are risograph prints using spot colour soy inks and printed on 100% recycled paper.

Printing with a risograph digital duplicator is not an exact science; misregistration can occur and there are no guarantees with consistent ink density and coverage, but it's exciting not knowing how the inks will blend or what you will end up with. The process requires testing and experimentation to see how the materials behave, creating a unique result.

The Aeropress posters were printed in four passes through the machine, each time layering another colour on top of the last to create tactile and vibrant prints.

We're delighted with how they have turned out and we will have them available to purchase on the night for €5. 

For more details on our friends over at Or Studios and examples of other projects they have worked on click here! 
 

Make sure to check back tomorrow for day 5 of our 7 Days of AeroPress!

 

7 Days of AeroPress - Day 3 - Our MC & Judges.

 

Julia Murray - Our MC for the night.

1) Give us a brief introduction of yourself.
Julia Murray - Head of Coffee Development with Gather & Gather. From Dublin, Ireland … Working with coffee for longer than I care to remember! First love of coffee while backpacking in Australia, then back to Ireland to work as a Barista Trainer with Bewley’s. I had 2 kids and worked as an independent Barista Trainer while they were little. Worked with a number of Micro Roasteries (training, selling, roasting etc). Love judging lots of things, especially coffee.


2) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
That you can buy replacement rubber bungs (as I recently found out, after purchasing our 5th one for home use….it is used pretty much every day!) 

3) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
To be the Global Terminator and Obliterate Terrible Dark Thrifty Roasts! 

4) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
I think it would have to be Kenya … so many stunning coffees I have enjoyed over the years have come from here ... 

5) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 items would you need?
Really? A big knife, a coffee tree and lotsa wine….

6) Describe yourself in 3 words.
Determined, fun and empathic! 

7) Name of a song that best describes you.
Oscillate Wildly – The Smiths ... no lyrics, probably a good thing!

8) Have you ever MC'ed at any events before or is this your first time?
I have MC'ed at various National Competitions over the years and I MC'ed the WBC in Dublin in 2016 …it was super scary at first but became enjoyable … love a mic!!


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Ger O'Donohoe - 1/3 of our Judging Panel for the Night.

1) Give us a brief introduction of yourself.
Ger O'Donohoe, Rialto, Dublin, Taurus, 36 years young, ex-wannabe rock star, natural red head, Dog Dad ... I run First Draft Coffee in Temple Bar, Im education Coodinator for SCA Ireland, and I publish the Dublin City Speciality Coffee Map of Dublin in Dublin.   

2) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
All the Penis Pump jokes.

3) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
To roast perfectly, and consistently by shooting lazers from my eyes. 

4) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
Brazil, those guys can dance!

5) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 items would you need?
Homing pigeon, paper, writing implement

6) Describe yourself in 3 words.
Sound As Fuck

7) Name of a song that best describes you.
"Ave Maria"

8) Have you ever judged any coffee competitions before? If so, how would you describe yourself as a judge?
Yes, National Barista Comps/Latte Art Comps/Throwdowns ... Sound as Fuck.


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Rhia González - 1/3 of our Judging Panel for the Night.

1) Give us a brief introduction of yourself.
Rhia González, contrary to the surname 100% born and bred in Cork. The real capital! Manager & Mama of Alchemy Coffee in Barrack St, Cork City, since a few weeks after its inception nearly 3 years ago. 

2) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
Its ease and indestructiblity. It's perfect for beginners to brewing and travel, and it's a great introduction to filter coffee.

3) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
To telepathically be able to make 3 Chemex at once while up the walls on a Saturday afternoon! 

4) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
Bolivia, my most favorite coffees are from South America and it's such an underrated country in terms of beauty and culture. 

5) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 items would you need?
A book, a lighter and a Brita filter for water. Sorted.

6) Describe yourself in 3 words.
Independent, straightforward and a bit of a gypsy soul. 

7) Name of a song that best describes you.
Rebel Rebel by David Bowie.

8) Have you ever emceed at any events before or is this your first time?
Never been a judge before. I'll probably be honest, happy to see everyone enjoying themselves and watching for an underdog.


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Robyn Butler - 1/3 of our Judging Panel for the Night.

1) Give us a brief introduction of yourself.
Hi! My name's Robyn Butler and I've been working at 3fe since 2014.

2) What is your favourite thing about the Aeropress?
I'm going to have to be honest here and say I'm not a huge fan of the aeropress as a brew method, so my favourite thing about it is probably the competition, which is by far the most fun coffee competition around.

3) If you could have any coffee superpower, what would it be?
"If I were a robot the aeropress would be my arm"

4) What coffee producing country would you most like to visit and why?
El Salvador, just because I'm a big fan of Salvadoran coffees.

5) If you were trapped on a desert island, what 3 items would you need?
I would bring a friend, a copy of the 2016 world aeropress annual, and maybe some rum to keep the island theme going.

6) Describe yourself in 3 words.
Live laugh love. 

7) Name of a song that best describes you.
The theme music from Sex and the City.

8) Have you ever emceed at any events before or is this your first time?
Last year I judged the World Aeropress Championship, plus a couple of latte art throwdowns here and there. I would describe my aeropress judging style as tipsy at best.


Make sure to check back tomorrow for day four of our Seven Days of AeroPress!

 

7 Days of AeroPress - Day 2 - Our Sponsors

 

Kinnegar Brewing

As coffee professionals, we are used to having well trained palettes, and are always seeking out the highest quality coffee. So it's no coincidence that many baristas opt for well-crafted beer with the same high quality and deliciousness as their drink of choice. At 3fe, it's fair to say we absolutely love Kinnegar, it is a drink of choice for the majority of our staff, so when they told us they would like to sponsor the AeroPress Championship and provide some alcoholic refreshments for the night, we graciously accepted! Owned and operated by Rick LeVert and Libby Carton, Kinnegar is an Independent Irish Craft Beer Brewery, based on the outskirts of Letterkenny in Co Donegal. Their farmhouse brewery is named after the nearby Kinnegar Beach, and it is from there they produce the exquisite full-flavoured beers, and sell their wide variety of beers around Ireland. Everything they produce - from their core range to their specials - always deliver on flavour.

Marco Beverage Systems Ltd

Marco Beverage Systems Ltd are one of the leading hot water delivery companies in the world. This Irish company are specialising in providing hot water systems, coffee brewers and tea brewers for savvy brew enthusiasts around the globe. Both of our cafes, 3fe Grand Canal St Lwr, and 3fe Sussex Terrace, along with our sister cafe, Five Points in Harold's Cross, use Marco boilers for all of our hot water needs. Anyone who has visited our cafes will have seen our beautiful SP9 brewers on the counters, which aid in producing consistently delicious coffee at high demand for our filter-loving customers. On the night of the AeroPress Championship, we will have our Marco boilers in full swing allowing all of our contestants to use as they wish. We have a long running, and very healthy relationship with Marco, who our wholesale team are resellers for, and we're grateful that they have helped to fund some of the expenses for the AeroPress Championship

Coffee Hit

Coffee Hit is an online coffee equipment store which sells everything from teaspoons to grinders. On the off-chance that we can't find the coffee tool we're looking for, our next step is always to check Coffee Hit! They are also the developers of the Rhinowares Milk Frothing Pitchers, which we use in our cafes and sell on our store. Coffee Hit have generously sponsored the Irish AeroPress Championship by providing us with some brilliant prizes, a Baratza Encore Grinder, Artisan Kettle, and a beautiful hour glass brewer.

TKC

TKC: The Kite Company, was formed in October 1989. Nearly 25 years on, TKC are still selling kites, but also happen to be the official distributors of the AeroPress in the UK and Ireland. It's from TKC that we source all of our AeroPress equipment that we stock in our cafes and webshops for our customers to buy. TKC have helped to fund some of the expenses for the AeroPress Championship, which we are very grateful for.

 

Thank you again to all of our sponsors who have supported 3fe in hosting the Irish AeroPress Championship 2017!

Make sure to check back tomorrow for day three of our Seven Days of AeroPress!

 

7 Days of AeroPress - Day 1 - What exactly is the AeroPress Championship?

 

What exactly is the AeroPress and what warrents it having its own competition?

Well, the humble AeroPress was invented in 2005 by Aerobie president Alan Adler, you know, the guy who invented the Aerobie Frisbee. At just seven ounces in weight, and only about a footlong, it is the perfect travel companion, but can also be used to make delicious coffee, with a wide range of brewing styles and recipes that can yield amazing and totally unique results. It is now a common household object that can be found in kitchens and offices across the world and its simple design allows it to be used by complete beginners to coffee professionals on a daily basis!

So how did this simple home brewer end up with a hugely anticipated yearly competition attracting contestants and fans from all over the world? The AeroPress Championship is an independent competition, that began in 2008 in Tim Wendelboe's coffee bar in Oslo, along side fellow coffee professional, Tim Varney. At the time, it was just organised as a bit of fun, almost mocking the rigid nature of other coffee competitions; The contestants drank lots of booze, brewed lots of delicious coffee, a winner was picked and everyone had a great time.

Since then, the competition has grown tremendously, developing a national championship circuit, with 51 nations participating each year to compete in the World Aeropress Championship. It has gained a huge following along the way, but the ethos remains the same. 


Since 2008, the World AeroPress Championship has been held all over the world, and has attracted fans and contestants worldwide.

| 2008 Oslo | 2009 Oslo | 2010 London | 2011 Milan | 2012 Portland | 

| 2013 Melbourne | 2014 Rimini | 2015 Seattle | 2016 Dublin | 2017 Seoul | 

What makes the AeroPress Championship unique is that although participants are serious about winning, the whole event is encapsulated in fun and having a good time, fans are encouraged to shout and cheer for their favourite barista and good music and beer has become integral. There is no criteria to enter or daunting scoresheets to worry about. Judges determine a winner on the count of a three finger point. "Which cup would you like to drink again?" ... One, Two, Three, Point! It is a great segway into competition for new baristas who don't fancy standing in front of a room full of people and reciting a fifteen minute performance and a great homage to the AeroPress!


This year, 3fe are delighted to be hosting the Irish AeroPress Championship. It's a competition that we look forward to every year and to have the opportunity to host it ourselves was a greatly appreciated!
 This day next week, 24 contestants from all over Ireland will be travelling to our cafe at Grand Canal to compete, with the winner being deemed the Irish AeroPress Champion 2017. We are looking forward to a great night, full of laughs, great music, delicious beer, prizes and giveaways, lovely food and of course, for the Irish AeroPress Champion to be chosen! The winner will not only win the coveted golden AeroPress trophy, but will also get the opportunity to travel to Seoul, in South Korea to represent Ireland in the World AeroPress Championship.

We hope to see many of you there to compete or cheer on the participants! Make sure to check back tomorrow for more information on this years Irish AeroPress Championship!