Hundreds of coffee enthusiasts gathered at the first POUR Coffee Festival in Charlotte this past weekend to celebrate the growing appreciation for specialty coffee in the Southeast. Counter Culture Coffee team members from the Asheville Training Center joined the fun by brewing coffee for the crowd and setting up an educational center at the sold out event.
“It was an incredible privilege to be invited to take part in the first POUR Coffee Fest in Charlotte,” said Lissy Matthews, the regional manager of Counter Culture’s Asheville Training Center . “Matt Dudley of Marco Beverage and Diana Mnatsakanyan-Sapp of Undercurrent Coffee in Charlotte are both very involved with the specialty coffee industry, and they brought their passion and expertise to this event.”
Counter Culture also worked with baristas from Not Just Coffee—a Charlotte coffee shop and Counter Culture partner—to serve two different coffees at the event.
“Being able to work alongside Counter Culture at a booth dedicated to brewing great coffee and educating people about the seed to cup process was amazing,” said Michelle Yow, a manager and trainer for Not Just Coffee.
Counter Culture brought an educational aspect to the event by brewing two Burundi coffees and introducing attendees to the unique tasting notes of each.
“Watching people’s faces light up when they went from tasting the washed process to the natural sundried was particularly amazing because many of them had never tasted a natural process coffee before,” said Lissy.
Not only did we introduce many people to our coffees at the event, but we also highlighted the importance of education to help further the appreciation for specialty coffee. In addition to conversations about processing, we also sponsored an education station that helped people new to specialty coffee understand concepts like the life cycle of a coffee plant and what goes into making specialty coffee.
“Although the Southeast has had a strong coffee presence for years, these sorts of specialty coffee events seem to happen in every other region of the country but this one,” said Lissy. “To see a festival like this come to the Southeast—and, more specifically, Charlotte—was incredibly exciting!”
We can’t wait to take part again!