Written by Marcel Reyes, Staff Writer. 

Dylan, James Coffee Co. 

Dylan, James Coffee Co. 

They’re the reason you go back to your favorite café and stay for a couple of hours. They greet you with a smile, ask if there’s anything more you need, and make thoughtful suggestions that you would like – because they know you by now. And damn if they can’t pour a tulip right into your morning latte to brighten your day.

 

Pablo, Cafe Virtuoso.

Pablo, Cafe Virtuoso.

While the origin of coffee, its roast and preparation method matter to me more now than before, one of the distinctive contributions of the second wave was the rise of the barista as a profession. In the third wave, baristas grow their ability to do a range of free pour shapes, attend conferences and seek certification. Yet at the heart of your interaction with these hard working professionals, it is their ability to connect with you and help you to feel welcomed by the culture of the café that really builds the reputation of any coffee establishment. They are what inspired me to begin my #BaristaTradingCard series on Instagram.

Jonathan, Caffe Calabria.

Jonathan, Caffe Calabria.

Working now with San Diego Coffee Network, I will ensure that San Diego’s best baristas are discovered and shared in this series, along with the baristas I meet while traveling the world. I will also continue the tradition of letting a barista I’ve profiled nominate his or her own barista.

Matt, James Coffee Co. 

Matt, James Coffee Co. 

Follow the adventure by keeping up with the #BaristaTradingCard hashtag on your Instagram app, or by tuning in here for a monthly recap of the #BaristaTradingCard.


If you know of a talented barista who makes amazing latte art, send your own nominations and tips to Marcel at marcelsreyes@gmail.com


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