Bel Townsend
  • Female
  • Darlington
  • United Kingdom
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Bel Townsend's Friends

  • Rebecca Johnston
  • Louise
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  • vincent
  • lindsaytron
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  • Aaron Meza
  • Shawn Steiman
  • Peter Tam
  • Monica Rae Hill
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Bel Townsend's Discussions

I want one of these - do you recommend them??

Started this discussion. Last reply by Bel Townsend Jun 12, 2009. 13 Replies

Little coffee vans.

Started this discussion. Last reply by chris ganger Apr 9, 2009. 6 Replies

Water quality?

Started this discussion. Last reply by Brady Sep 28, 2008. 3 Replies

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Profile Information

What is your position in the coffee industry?
barista, home barista, coffee enthusiast
Where are you located? ( City and Country )
Darlington, north-east UK
How many years have you been in the industry?
If you are a barista or shop, are you interested in a barista exchange with another coffee shop/barista?
Tell us more about your coffee shop or barista skills.
Worked as the manager/chef and barista for a year in a cafe specialising in luxury coffees. From there I've undertaken two lots of professional barista training at a independent roaster company. I also worked at Caffe Nero for the past 8 months, and took their barista training course as well.
I am a certified coffee geek too - I am currently doing my PhD in geography, researching the concepts of luxury and wastage in the coffee industry.
What cities or countries are you interested in traveling to?
Brazil, Italy, Nicaragua, Paris, Istanbul... basically I'd love to go anywhere!
About Me:
I'm a caffeine addict who is just beginning to learn coffee gourmandism! I have always loved the stuff, I love the performance that goes into making good espresso and I think the history of the coffee industry is fascinating.
I've been working in Caffe Nero for far too long, and have come to the dull conclusion that they are not actually very good at what they do. I am a PhD student at the university of Sheffield studying all aspects of coffee - in terms of globalisation, fair trade, consumption, branding, and culture. Really really enjoying it. Hopefully I will be able to go out to Costa Rica and Nicaragua at the end of the year to see the coffee harvest as well.
About My Company:
I would love to open my own coffee shop and cafe sometime soon... It's gonna be called Doctor Coffee's and based in Vancouver when we finally move over there!
What is your favorite thing about the coffee industry?
That there is so much that goes in to making what is essentially just a drink, and the variations in, and history of this drink is fascinating

My coffee shop dream...

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Bel Townsend's Blog

What the customers actually think - focus group responses to questions of quality, value and skill

Posted on October 1, 2008 at 7:22am 6 Comments

I have been asking lots of people what they think "high quality" coffee is. The following quotes are from professional Baristas, coffee shop owners and other industry specialists from Barista Exchange.

"coffee made from a barista, so he can have the best blend but if he dont know how to grind and dose or he or she are overheating milk, whats the point of 'best beans'?"

"For me everything start in the coffee bean. At least for my country coffee is an art. We want the… Continue

It's been a loooong, long time.

Posted on September 20, 2008 at 5:45am 1 Comment

Hey all,

I haven't been on here in MONTHS! tut-tut, how lapse of me. Anyhoo, while I catch up on all the gossip for you merry bunch I thought I'd post you all an update.

My uni project is developing slowly but surely in that I'm just about to start my second year. It has come round sooooo quickly, it's unnerving. For the past year, I've been reading solidly about Coffee, and Waste and Quality, and coffee shop culture, and the effects of caffeine on the brain, and the economics of… Continue

First unOfficial Attempt at Coffee Cupping

Posted on May 15, 2008 at 3:57am 7 Comments


I know how cupping should be done; I know that I am supposed to use very small samples of single origin green coffee beans, roasted to order to a light Vienna or half-City roast. I should then grind these to French Press level - not too coarse, not too fine. Then I have to smell it. Then I add boiled water straight on top of the beans, and allow it to cool and for the grinds to settle. After that I break the 'crust' - that is, all the grinds still forming a skin on the surface… Continue

Finished!!!! (dances round room madly)

Posted on April 14, 2008 at 1:49pm 8 Comments

Hey everyone,

this is a bit of a cop-out blog post, but I thought I'd publicise today's Happy Thought.



I am currently registered as an MPhil student at university, and in order to be upgraded to PhD, I had to write an enormous paper, explaining exactly what I want to do in my research, and why I want to do it, and why it's remotely interesting to anybody else. Mine is all about the coffee industry. 4500 words DONE.… Continue

What the hell I think I am doing...

Posted on March 17, 2008 at 3:52am 4 Comments

Even the words terrify me now. "Upgrade Proposal". I have to write exactly what I want to do with this project, 4000 words, and then a panel interview to defend The Plan. I've still got a couple of months, but it is now becoming obvious that before I can convince other people that this is a good, plausible idea, I need to figure out once and for all what that idea actually is.

I've been faffing. Farting around with vaguely academic concepts and seeing how they could possibly be… Continue

Comment Wall (38 comments)

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At 6:37am on October 10, 2010, angela said…
My name is miss angela desmond i saw your profile today and became interested in
you,i will also like to know you more,and i want you to send an email to my
email address so i can give you my picture, for you to know whom i am.
Here is my email address(
I believe we can move from here!
I am waiting for your mail to my email address above.
(Remeber the distance or colour does not matter but love matters alot in life)
At 5:26am on June 10, 2009, Brady said…
The xbox looks great! Good work.
At 12:00pm on June 9, 2009, Brady said…
Have been following the whole "steampunk" lever machine discussion for a while and finally decided to figure out what you were talking about (having no idea what this meant). Where have I been? Have always thought that was a great aesthetic, but had no idea that it had a name! Thank you!
At 6:56am on September 22, 2008, vincent said…
Hello there stranger, Hope all is well. havent heard from you in awhile. So what's this Shared Earth business all about anyway?
At 7:41am on July 3, 2008, vincent said…
Buenas Dia
I'm glad at least you tried the Rwanda. I never said that it or any other African was better than Latin American coffees, but I think it has a good body, and nice acidity that makes a good cup. I'm not crazy about coffees from the Americas though, with the expection of Organic Chiapas, or a good Costa Rican (La Minita). What do I think is the best coffee or coffee region- Indonesia. Celebes, Sumatra and Java. Ethiopian Yirgacheffe and the Harrar are excellent African coffees. Coffee was born in Ethiopia ( the dancing goat story). It's the perfect place to grow coffee, always has been.
At 5:40am on July 1, 2008, Treva said…
Great. I was hoping you would join the Coffee Culinaria group. I am also looking to recruit chefs who are NOT yet on barista exchange - but who are involved with coffee - let me know if you have ideas - suggestions - I want to bring the coffee and culinary worlds together in some small delicious way.
At 7:58am on June 30, 2008, vincent said…
I'm glad you got the coffee, I hope you like it. You'll have to give me a full report. Today, I'm actually brewing that for samples(the Rwanda). I've got much to do today, some big orders to roast. have a good day, Madam Bel of Darlington.
At 10:17am on June 20, 2008, vincent said…
It's Ok, that you are Married to the "pure coffee culture" but having an affair with a little flavor. I never drink coffee without milk, it would be like going to work without any knickers on. Your maple drink sounds good. I'm sorry you are having to drink not so good coffee my dear but Alas! Coffee cometh your way, out of Dallas, to the Jetty, on plane across the Atlantic, into to Ireland to pick up more things to take to England, on to the main land, pass liverpool, and then North about 200 km to Darlington. Have a nice day
At 7:08am on June 20, 2008, vincent said…
Morning Lady Townsend, I'm bloody tired, been a rough week, i feel like someone kicked me in the balls. Anyway let's talk coffee, No roasting today(Friday) Today's brew will be Costa Rica Vienna Roast, and for Decaf,, Sumatra. One of my favorites. The decaf Sumatra has a very musty, earthy, taste. Doesn't sound very good does it, but it is. What about you?
At 7:03am on June 19, 2008, vincent said…
I'll be roasting it today(Thursday). The Costa Rican/Mexican blend sounds good. Have you noticed that Brazil is completely different from the rest of the coffees that are grown in the Americas? and yes it does has a slightly harsh metalic taste to it. However, that's a quality it can have when roasted for espresso because that gives a hardness. Ok Lady, I must start my day. I hope yours goes well. cheers

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