Brian Ludviksen, Customer Support ManagerBrian Ludviksen, also known to the online gaming world as Johnny Five, has been a dedicated servant to the world of coffee for more than 10 years. It all started when he took a night job at a coffee house and picked up some barista skills. That tapered into a roasting career that lasted until his introduction to Counter Culture Coffee. As manager of the Technical Services department, Brian is involved in everything from machine maintenance to exploring the science of brewing. When not working, Brian can be found playing with his dog, Toby; a Chihuahua-Pomeranian and listening to albums from his extensive and hip collection of vinyl.
Q: What coffee are you currently drinking?
A: Finca El Puente has been tickling my palate lately. I think this coffee is as delicately beautiful as it is powerful. A luminescent, cherry acidity and soupy, savory body lend this coffee stereotypical African features. The balance of its brightness and savory flavors also shows how well our dedicated roasters have perfected this bean's roasting profile.
Q: Choose your favorite coffee and brewing method.
A: Oh, is this a trick question?!? My favorite coffee brewing method would be espresso! I really like how the La Marzocco FB-80 pulls a shot. The pressure is both gentle and b and the temperature is consistent, giving any good espresso a fair shot at being poured at its best. I'm a stoic fan of our Espresso Toscano espresso blend, but as some of my fellow workers know I have made October my official single origin shot month; so I look forward to experimenting with a variety of single origins on the FB-80.
Q: Who at Counter Culture Coffee would you most like to arm-wrestle, and why?
A: I try to avoid physical conflict. However, I am making an official moustache growing challenge to my coworkers. I will be spending this autumn and winter growing and grooming a moustache that I will pit against my peers in an attempt to have the finest moustache at Counter Culture Coffee.
Q: What is your favorite book?
A: The Gutenberg Bible, the first book printed with movable type, is the most valuable single book. However, my favorite book would probably be...
Fiction novel: “Demian” by Hermann Hesse
Non-fiction novel: “What Einstein Told His Cook” by Robert L. Wolke
Play: “The Plebeians Rehearse the Revolution” by Gunter Grass
Poetry: “Japanese Death Poems” edited by Yoel Hoffman
Comic book: “Martha Washington Goes to War” by Frank Miller
Q: What keeps you busy outside of work?
A: I'm an agnostic Taurus who enjoys cooking, cleaning, gardening, Star Wars, skateboarding, and collecting records.
Q: Share an interesting fact you've learned about coffee while working at Counter Culture Coffee and name the person from whom you learned it.
A: The Golden Cup standard. Peter really helped me look past the rigid calculations to understand the concept. It's one thing to know how to do the math; it's another thing to know why you’re doing it.
Q: When you were 8 years old, what did you want to be when you grew up?
A: A writer.
Q: If you could beam yourself anywhere in the world for your lunch break, where would you go,and what would you eat?
A: Since you said beam ... how about being beamed aboard the USS Enterprise NCC-1701D and meeting Jean Luc Picard by the replicator in Ten Forward for some Earl Grey tea and maybe a Romulan ale.
Q: Which Counter Culture Coffee customer is most likely to see you outside of work (i.e. where do you like to hang out)?
A: One could find me at any of the following places in Raleigh when I'm not working: The Third Place Coffeehouse, Nice Price Books, Schoolkids Records, Lilly's Pizza, the flea market, American Way thrift store, or whichever Target (do you pronounce it with a French accent, too?!?) is close by.
Q: For a while there, you were dominating local weekly magazine the Independent's “missed connections” section. What inspired you to submit, and can you share any missed connections posts that you were particularly proud of?
A: Okay, it's true I’ve totally placed fake missed connections for years in the Independent. Here's one of my favorites:
It's not five minutes from now!
You walked into the coffeehouse and yelled "You gotta live NOW! It's NOT 5 minutes from NOW!" and had iced tea. I thought that was so cool. We should hang.