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October is the time to get excited about the annual New York Coffee Festival. After my experience last year, I couldn’t wait to get my caffeine buzz going again. Held every year at the Metropolitan Pavilion in Chelsea, the New York Coffee Festival hosts everything New York has to offer in the field of coffee and related foods, activities, and organizations.

New York’s best coffee establishments were onsite giving out samples of their Coffee, Espresso, Cold Brew, and everything in between. Sey CoffeeJoe CoffeeStumptownCoffee of Grace (and many more) were among the specialty roasters to set up shop. Guest coffee roasters from other parts of the world were also in attendance serving their best, including Ebel Coffee and Daterra Coffee. To try everything is a challenge, but to then pick highlights among all of the expert roasters, that is even harder. But I’ll try: here’s my coffee highlight from this year’s festival:

Nobletree Cold Brew: Bold but smooth, this is an “all day” type of brew. 6am? 4pm? I’ll take a large, please. Thanks for powering me through this eventful festival!

If you’re looking to lighten your coffee, you’ve got options. Super Creamer can add a high-protein, lactose-free boost. Califia Farms was ready to add one of their many almond milk varieties. Oatly made me a “CortadOat” with Variety Coffee!

NYC based Azuca explained the health benefits of CBD, and their vision of CBD options in all of NYC’s coffee shops. Instead of asking for two pumps of simple syrup, ask for two pumps of a CBD syrup like Azuca!

Local bakeries such as Danny Macaroons and The Good Batch had the perfect coffee pairings. If you prefer your coffee pairings sans gluten, don’t worry! Sans Bakery has a wide variety of baked goods suitable to your diet. One food to be careful of: the Espresso spread by Flat Brew. It is a delicious alternative way to intake your daily caffeine, by spreading it on a bagel for example. Just be careful of pairing it with coffee, that’s a heavy dose!

I tried the coffee questionnaire at Trade Coffee which matched me up with a roast based on my normal coffee preferences and habits. They matched me with the Southern Weather Blend by Onyx Coffee Lab, and I received a pour-over coffee on the spot to confirm! Take the quiz at Trade’s website to see your ideal coffee:

The festival always brings you a step further than just eating and drinking. Breville had a half dozen espresso machines open to the public and instructors to teach proper barista technique. A Sensory Experience was offered to isolate tastes, smells, and sounds, and identify their role in the coffee experience. Industry experts explained the supply side of the coffee bean procurement process. Finally the masters of coffee faced off and competed in a number of categories.

The Coffee Music Project and the Coffee Art Project both showcased and gave a platform to up and coming artists, as well as raised funds for Project Waterfall.

Profits from the festival go towards Project Waterfall, which, in partnership with NYC based charity: water, develops projects to get clean water to the communities of coffee-growing regions of the world.

If you missed it (or just miss it) New York Coffee Festival will return next year! October 11-13 2019 has been confirmed, and The Couch Sessions will keep you in the loop as the event approaches! Click here for more pictures from this year’s festival, or check out the official event hashtag: #NewYorkCoffeeFestivalfor everyone else’s experience!

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