Coffee Fest...looks like it's being billed toward retailers? I was wondering if any roasters have been.
What'd you think?
Was it worth it?
Would you go back? Are you going back?
How does it compare to SCAA?
I went to one in Chicago a few years back and to the Coffee and Tea show this year in Toronto.
I went because I was just opening my company, rocketfuelcoffee.com and needed any information I could get my hands on. And I learned quite a bit. However, many of the booths had to do with
- coffee flavorings
- cups and store supplies
- insurance and organizations like that
- barista championships
- crap I don't even know what
About 20% had to actually do with coffee, espresso, roasters and useful information. Only because I am a networking. socializing busybody and I invited myself to dinner with a group of coffee company owners did I actually learn anything at all.
The workshops etc are infomercials for the guys who sponsor them.
So have a plan to make it worth your while because most coffee company owners I know who take this business seriously go once and never again.
By all means if anyone who knows different, please chime in.
I went to CoffeeFest in Seattle in October 2010. Took a few classes, the hands on barista class, nothing new to me. I also took the SCAA Barista certification, passed the hands on part perfectly and failed the written part. I have owned my coffee shop for 5 years but they have their own way of describing things. Nice waste of money for that. Overall though it was good for a one time visit, I wouldnt go every year, maybe to some other events. A few roaster manufacturers were there, had everything out, small to large roasters. Lots of info and products. I traveled from Florida so the trip wasn't cheap.
I appreciate the responses. That's kind of what I was thinking...I've been to SCAA and really enjoyed it. Spent a whole day on the show floor and the rest of the time in classes. Didn't see many classes that I found interesting at Coffee Fest so think i'll bypass it even though i have family in chicago i could stay with, i still don't think it'd be worth the flight and other expenses involved.