NOTE: THIS POST WAS ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED APRIL 20TH 2018. DUE TO SITE HOST TRANSFER DATE OF PUBLISH IS NOT CORRECT.
The Toronto Coffee and Tea Expo returned to Toronto for the 2nd year in a row to bring the best baristas, roasters, tea sommeliers, blenders, distributers, coffee shops an café gear all under one roof – the Evergreen Brickworks. This is a place where all coffee and tea lovers can discover what’s ‘brewing’ inside the minds of leading coffee and tea innovators as they explore exhibitors from all over. In addition, you can participate in the new, and returning hands-on programs (which are free by the way!) such as the TIY (Tea-It-Yourself) workshop and How to be a Barista!
So, here are the six reasons why if you love coffee and tea, leave in or near Toronto, you need to visit the Toronto Coffee and Tea Expo!
REASON ONE: It’s held at the Evergreen Brickworks!
I’ve got to admit, I’ve only been to the Evergreen Brickworks once or twice during school. So when I found out this expo was here, it was enough to sell me (despite the coffee and tea of course)! The Don Valley Pressed Brick Works Company produced a wide variety of bricks and kiln-fired clay products that built many landmarks in Toronto including Massey Hall and Casa Loma. As of 2010, it is opened year-round with living demonstration of how past and present works together to create greener models for urban living.
REASON TWO: You learn the agriculture behind coffee
Misha’s Mundi Coffee – the rarest coffee in the world
ABOUT MISHA MUNDI COFFEE
This is 100% Arabica Coffee grown in the finest Peruvian soil with the help of a native Peruvian animal known as the Peruvian Coatis, belonging to the racoon family. Now this journey may be a little weird for some, but trust me, I sampled this coffee and it was DELICIOUS.
When the coffee is matured and ready to harvest, the red cherry is collected from the coatis, leaving the green cherry. During the second round of selection, the coatis pick out the sweetest red cherries. This is where it will get a bit weird…
In the coati’s digestive system, the stomach amino acids and enzymes breakdown the outer layers of the coffee cherry. Once dissolved, the coffee bean remains whole infused with other fruits and vegetables. The remaining layers help protect the coffee bean when extracted from their feces. After extraction, sent to the wash mill (where they’re washed several times to remove all feces matter). Once clean, they’re spread to be laid out in the sun to dry for 3-5 days. When dried, they are cleaned, packaged, and shipped to the warehouse centre in Toronto. They are then roasted here in Toronto, to be packaged and distributed worldwide. The profits received are sent back to the nursery, where the circle is complete. By maintaining the nursery, you protect the coatis, in return sending you the richest and rarest coffee in the world.
REASON THREE: You learn the agriculture behind tea
Wize Monkey – Coffee Leaf Tea
The founders Max and Arnaud were completing their Masters in France, and one of their class projects was to build a global business. They found a study that proved health benefits of Coffee Leaf Tea. This is where they realized that the typical coffee farm only has a three-month long harvest season. So they asked themselves a question – What if the leaf could stabilize their economy?
Their mission then became to break the poverty cycle in coffee communities by harvesting a tasty, healthy, and sustainable product.
These premium arabica plants have premium leaves, which in turn, create a sweet and smooth cup. With rich volcanic soil and perfect microclimate, this is the ultimate location for a coffee farm. They partner with a farm that has the highest level of ethics, that are higher than fair trade farms.
The Coffee Leaf:
REASON FOUR: SAMPLES, SAMPLES, SAMPLES
REASON FIVE: Purchasing all the coffee and tea (and snacks)
What I bought:
REASON SIX: Great way to network, learn industry secrets and even create things
The Maker Bean Café
A space where guests can enjoy a great cup of coffee and food while letting their imaginations soar by designing and making things together. They specialize in high-tech digital fabrication like 3D printing, laser cutting and educational workshops.
At the Toronto Coffee and Tea Expo, you are able to customize your own! You have a huge selection to choose from, or if you have your own design, you can have that done too! You can create large signs, pins, lasered macarons, and my favourite part – COASTERS. The bonus part: if you are the first 100 people to the expo for each time slot you receive a free TCTE x The Maker Bean coaster (shown below)
Galligreen has become one of North America’s most diverse collection of high quality Foodservice Disposable products. Their expansive line of products comprises of over 300 items ranging from compostable products, cutlery, cups, bowls, gloves, wooden and bamboo products, take-out constrainers, paper bags and poly bags.
This company is great to network with if you’re in the food industry business! I’ll for sure be keeping them in entrepreneurial mind!
That’s all for now folks! If you made it to the end and learned just as much as I do, be sure to check the expo out next year to learn more! You don’t want to miss this chance in buying some of the best or rarest coffee beans in the world, a wide range of tea and kombucha. Learn to be a barista too!
Hope to see you all there next year!
*NOTE: this post was made in collaboration with Toronto Coffee and Tea Expo, however all opinions are of my own!