A Cupping Extravaganza Coming to Charlotte, N.C.

Charlotte espresso lovers: Seize your cupping spoons and prepare to style coffees from throughout!


Featured photograph by Daniel Weiss through Unsplash

LaChrista McArthur loves espresso individuals.

Although she’s working on the Specialty Espresso Expo in Portland, Ore., this week, she encountered a number of espresso lovers in her hometown of Charlotte, N.C., who gained’t be capable to make it this 12 months. A visit throughout the nation for a espresso occasion is simply not within the playing cards for lots of people, whether or not due to funds, work, or different life obligations.

“It began from a dialog I had with a co-worker,“ says LaChrista, who’s the founding father of The Barista Coalition, a corporation that seeks to make specialty espresso accessible for everybody. “Final 12 months they had been capable of go to Expo and so we met up there. … After which (not too long ago) at work, I requested, ’Are you going?’ They stated no, this 12 months they wouldn’t be capable to afford it.“ Her co-worker then stated that the worst a part of lacking the Expo was lacking out on all of the coffees that attendees would be capable to attempt.

So LaChrista had an thought: Why not attain out to the good espresso roasters who shall be on the Expo, so the Barista Coalition may introduce native espresso individuals to the scrumptious coffees obtainable there?

The event flyer is modeled after a coffee stain on paper. It lists event details of date and time and place, and reads : We're bringing some amazing coffees to your front porch.
Infinite Cups will deliver Expo-caliber coffees to Charlotte later this month. Photograph courtesy of The Barista Coalition.

Infinite Cups

Cue Infinite Cups, a cupping extravaganza going down in Charlotte, N.C., on April 30.

LaChrista’s expertise with espresso started in highschool with a senior undertaking: taking on a espresso store for a day. She labored with a mentor who helped her pull off her senior undertaking and not using a hitch. These days, LaChrista is lending a hand to different baristas. Her aim is to enhance range and enhance entry to training within the espresso neighborhood.

Training, Inspiration, and Entry

The Barista Coalition focuses on training {and professional} improvement for baristas. LaChrista mentions that for lots of people beginning out in espresso, there may be not a transparent plan for upward mobility. Providing profession help and coaching helps espresso individuals flip a job right into a profession. “(Espresso profession success) shouldn’t be a matter of connections,” LaChrista states. “It needs to be obtainable.”

Baristas crowd around a white bar as people pull shots at an event.
Group occasions are an enormous a part of The Barista Coalition’s aim of constructing neighborhood. Photograph courtesy of The Barista Coalition.

Infinite Cups is a superb instance of how internet hosting neighborhood occasions can deliver individuals collectively to be taught and uncover extra. Roasters responded favorably to the decision, excited to share the love (and the coffees) that shall be at Expo. The Barista Coalition has gathered beans from all around the world for this occasion. Sponsors embrace Brandywine Espresso Roasters, WatchHouse, Abracadabra Espresso Co., Oddly, Onyx Espresso Lab, and others (together with your buddies at Barista Journal; we’re large followers of The Barista Coalition’s work).

The Charlotte Espresso Group

Constructing neighborhood is one in every of The Barista Coalition’s core values. LaChrista mentions that earlier than the pandemic, espresso professionals gathered collectively in her space rather more incessantly. All through the early days of COVID-19, The Barista Coalition hosted digital espresso crawls as a solution to hold individuals related.

Whereas the in-person occasion calendar continues to be emptier lately, Infinite Cups shall be an effective way to deliver espresso individuals collectively once more. Baristas new to the Charlotte espresso scene could have an opportunity to make some buddies and contacts, and everybody will be capable to benefit from the camaraderie that espresso occasions deliver.

LaChrista and two baristas laugh together by an espresso machine.
Infinite Cups will function coffees from roasters from all around the world. Photograph courtesy of The Barista Coalition.

The Particulars

Infinite Cups will happen on April 30 at Not Simply Espresso on Jay Road in Charlotte; festivities will start at 6:30 p.m.  

Within the spirit of inclusivity, the cupping occasion is free to attend. “This occasion is about neighborhood and all of the great components that hold it going,” The Barista Coalition Instagram explains. “This occasion can also be about making the far and distant accessible. This occasion is about making area the place espresso professionals don’t need to assume (about) cash (flights, taking off, and so forth.) or really feel like they’re lacking out on all of the enjoyable on this season of espresso occasions, however can take into consideration constructing their palettes and having fun with experiences with the neighborhood in their very own yard.”


J. Marie Carlan (she/they) is the net editor for Barista Journal. She has been a barista for 15 years and writing since she was sufficiently old to carry a pencil. When she’s not behind the espresso bar or toiling over content material, you could find her perusing report shops, accumulating bric-a-brac, writing poetry, and attempting to maintain the vegetation alive in her Denver house. She sometimes updates her weblog.

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