Mike Thelin writes for Portland Monthly: Portland Plated....his latest article started a fierce little blog fest which could reflect how things are heating up in heavy coffee culture cities.

Portland Coffee Wars....I echo Thelin's sentiments in the last line.... "....This is about to get interesting."

Check it out:

http://www.portlandmonthlymag.com/blogs/portland-plated/coffee060309/

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This is a sarcastic reply...yes?

Of course we want higher consumer expectations and better coffees....

Good to see you at Barista the other day

Sam
Interesting read, but I think that the industry saw this coming. Especially when they started shutting down Starbucks all over the place and new roasters were popping up like a never ending game of Whack-a-Mole. Personally, I'm stoked. Pushing each other (roaster to roaster and barista to barista) is always a plus because it encourages us to grow and give way to new (hopefully better) standards and skills. I don't think anyone would argue that. Viva barista and all that goodness.
sarcastic.....nooooooooo, not here.
Competition definitely improves the breed. I'm looking forward to trying lots of new coffees and being impressed over and over again.
While I definitely agree with the roll of eyes at the perceived "war", I am really curious to see what the outcome is. I'd really love to see lots of thriving cafes expertly serving different roasters... if only we can access EVERYONE and get the masses on board. Believe it or not there are still people in pdx who don't drink coffee?!?!?

another thing that occurred to me is that there hopefully will come a time when green standards and environmental practices take on more of a role as yard stick for this competition. While quality is the obvious metric, eventually, if this sort of expansion is going to continue, much MUCH more attention needs to be paid towards company practices. CCC already has their 3rd party cert for DT. Who will follow suit?
Didnt I hear someplace recently that no one should be above or better than another. We should all be equal. :)
I'm a roaster for Kaldi's Coffee Roasting Company in St. Louis. We love you Intelli, Stumptown, Counter Culture, PT's, Etc,... etc.... This industry is not about competing in the cutthroat sense of the word. It's about leadership. We are all trying to be great. We are all striving for excellence. We are all hoping to share a great cup of coffee with the world, and hopefully each other. I have never felt negativity from a specialty roaster. This is why we have things like Barista Exchange and the Guilds. We work together and help each other succeed. We have barista jams and coffeereview.com. We have the USBC and roast exchanges. We work with each other to build capitol for importing really special coffees. I know I'm cheesy as hell, but we are like a big extended family. We see each other a couple times a year, have some coffee, some beer, exchange ideas, and leave happy. No war. No spite. Just coffee love.
I'm with Joe here. Make Coffee not War. Thelin's writing (which I dig) does not accurately reflect his title of his blog at all (or vice versa). There is no war going on here in Portland, in fact many of the new roasters and retail shop owners got there feet wet serving Stumptown coffee. Everyone is stoked for a new coffee house to open and excited to dry different coffees. The blog is pretty accurate and a great read, but it's the comments are a bit negative.

People almost always like to root for the little guy ... which Stumptown was just 5 years ago. They still do a great job, but any company is going to change and evolve as they grow. They've opened up opportunity for others to follow here in Portland and that is cool. It reminds me of the Micro-Brew beer revolution that took place here in Portland, where there were a couple big names on the micro-brew scene who spawned dozens of local breweries.

I love this city and am excited to be part of the 4th, 5th what wave is it now? :)

Joe Marrocco said:
I'm a roaster for Kaldi's Coffee Roasting Company in St. Louis. We love you Intelli, Stumptown, Counter Culture, PT's, Etc,... etc.... This industry is not about competing in the cutthroat sense of the word. It's about leadership. We are all trying to be great. We are all striving for excellence. We are all hoping to share a great cup of coffee with the world, and hopefully each other. I have never felt negativity from a specialty roaster. This is why we have things like Barista Exchange and the Guilds. We work together and help each other succeed. We have barista jams and coffeereview.com. We have the USBC and roast exchanges. We work with each other to build capitol for importing really special coffees. I know I'm cheesy as hell, but we are like a big extended family. We see each other a couple times a year, have some coffee, some beer, exchange ideas, and leave happy. No war. No spite. Just coffee love.

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