2012 Coffee & Tea Festival NYC
The 7th Annual Coffee And Tea Festival, held last month in New York City, once again delivered an educational and entertaining celebration of these two beloved beverages. With record attendance of over 5,000 attendees, the 2012 festival was an all-time high for the show. While this year’s SOLD OUT show may have disappointed those who could not get tickets, it delivered a fantastic experience for consumers, area retailers, and the media who packed the aisles at 7WEST to learn about and sample some of the best coffees and teas from around the world.
An international lineup of coffee and tea exhibitors—more than 50 in all—delivered an exceptional opportunity to taste many quality beverages. Those with a sweet tooth were delighted to see exhibitors who offered samples of a variety of cookies, cakes, chocolates, and honey.
COFFEE THE MUSICAL:
Serving up a song (and a smile) were the folks from COFFEE: THE MUSICAL, a new musical set to land on Broadway in the 2012-2013 season. The cast of Coffee: The Musical hosted a special event on Saturday night—a cast reading and performance of its upcoming songs—which received a thunderous round of applause from the special invited guests, media, and lucky ticket holders in attendance. “We really enjoyed the evening,” said Susan Smith speaking on behalf of her family who travelled from Boston to attend the festival and the Coffee: The Musical sneak peek. Among those joining the lead female vocalist Jodi Katz of Trans-Siberian Orchestra fame, was TV and movie actor Jay O. Sanders, Broadway superstar Bart Shatto (Les Miserables, Civil War, and Cats), Kathleen Monteleone (finalist on NBC's Grease), Shannon Hamm (TV host on YouNow.com) and producer Robert Galinsky.
The 2012 Coffee and Tea Festival NYC was also privileged to host the United States Barista Championships for the Northeast region. Thirteen states sent representatives to compete in this year’s regional competition—all baristas hoping to take home the win.
Congratulations go out to NYC’s Katie Carguilo from Counter Culture Coffee who was this year’s regional champ. Carguilo moves on to the next round of competitions where she’ll compete against fellow baristas from other regions. The National USBC Competition will take place in conjunction with the 24th annual SCAA Exposition and Symposium in Portland, Oregon April 19 – 22 2012. Good luck Katie!
Attendees were thrilled to see the return of some of the special presenters including Yoon Hee Kim, Marcela Zuchovicki, Chef Melody McGinley Whitelaw, Donny Raus, Chris Cason, and Ellen Easton. New to the festival programming this year was Michael Schwartz, founder of BAO who explained the history and mystery of kombucha.
A noticeable presence of volunteers—more than 100 in all sporting the official event t-shirt—were on hand to assist exhibitors, register guests, assist presenters, and welcome visitors. “We could not have pulled off an event of this size without the assistance we receive from our volunteers,” said Andy Calimano, owner of Starfish Junction, producers of the festival. “It is great to see so many volunteers return year after year. Our volunteers this year were just amazing,” he added.
A thank you is also due to our event photographers Evan Cohen, Tanya Deutsch, Waseem Ghattas, David Sherman, and Susan Smith. View their photos at www.coffeeandteafestival.com. Thanks too, to the National Coffee Association and the Specialty Tea Institute for their support.
This year’s show goodie bag was sponsored once again by ING DIRECT and was filled with a variety of samples from Almondina, Biscoff Gourmet Cookies, Celestial Seasonings, Choice Organic Teas, Numi Organic Tea, Teeccino Herbal Coffee, and Walker’s Shortbread. It also included a recipe booklet from Cabot Creamery, free movie screening promos from Fox/Searchlight Pictures, and discount subscription offers from Coffee Talk and The Tea House Times.
As in years past, the exhibitors and attendees came out in support of the event charity, Cup for Education. The money raised at the event will go to help fund some of the worthy programs sponsored by Cup for Education with their mission to help poor rural coffee communities of Central and Latin America build schools within their communities, and assist in providing them with teachers and the basic tools needed to educate the future generations of coffee farmers. To find out more or to make a donation, visit them at www.CupforEducation.org
In case you missed the 2012 Coffee and Tea Festival NYC, below you will find a list of our exhibitors and partners:
*Goodie Bag Only
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