By HEIDI GAISER/The Daily Inter Lake
barista skills against a big name in coffee circles in Seattle last
Klatch Coffee, located in the Los Angeles area, was Colter’s opening-round competitor in the America’s Best Espresso Competition, held as part of the 2012 Coffee Fest trade show.
“It was a great experience and I had a lot of fun,”Macdonald said.
Klatch had won a world’s best espresso competition at the World Barista Championships in Tokyo in 2007 and was named Roast magazine’s
Micro Roaster of the year in 2009.
“They’re very well known in the specialty coffee realm,”Macdonald
said of Klatch.
Colter Coffee was the only Montana company in the competition. Macdonald said he applied with no real expectations and was surprised to be accepted.
Each barista was given only six minutes to pull shots for three
“I had to adjust the grind and make sure the machine was dialed
in properly,” he said. “It was surprising how fast it went.”
Macdonald said the coffee world has become very much
“The standard used to be very specific, the ground coffee to water to pressure to temperature,” he said. “Now it’s changing where you can adjust the temperature and pressure while you’re in the middle of brewing coffee and espresso. The digital technology is changing
things by leaps and bounds.”
Macdonald said Colter has retrofit its downtown Kalispell store’s espresso machine with a digital temperature control, but he’s not sure he wants to change his company’s barista methods to the degree he’s seeing in the bigger cities.
He said modern espresso can be too syrupy for his liking.
“We stick to the traditional Italian method, but we put our own little twist on it,” he said.