CoffeeCon is a consumer coffee festival and one day coffee university that travels to major coffee cities in the United States. It was created by coffee author and video producer Kevin Sinnott who wrote the book The Art & Craft of Coffee and produced a how to video called Coffee Brewing Secrets. While working on these projects Sinnott realized there are several industry B-to-B coffee events such as the Specialty Coffee Association of America and the National Coffee Association and that some local coffee shops were holding brewing seminars but there were simply no large scale festivals exclusively for coffee consumers. He decided to turn the book and the video into a live event. He created CoffeeCon as a place where coffee lovers could taste samples from local coffee roasters side-by-side, learn about coffee from national coffee experts and attend coffee classes on every brewing method. He hosts the event and calls it a coffee meet-up.
The first CoffeeCon was on February 25, 2012 with a grant for the local tourism commission in Warrenville, IL. It attracted over 1,000 consumers. The second event was held May 4, 2013 again in Warrenville, IL During 2014 Sinnott decided it was time to take the show on the road. His first stop was Chicago on April 12, 2014 at the Zhou B Art Center. He wanted to add art elements to enhance the coffeehouse flavor of the event as well as a Writer's Roundtable Panel to discuss the topic of new media writing. Next stop was San Francisco on July 26, 2014 at Terra Galleries. CoffeeCon LA is scheduled for November 8, 2014 with NYC in early 2015.
George Howell is the special guest presenter at every CoffeeCon. He teaches a two and half hour tasting seminar that teaches consumers the vocabulary of coffee tasting and trains the palate of the attendees. Coffee growers are invited to teach about coffee sustainability. Popular classes include grinding, water, hand pour methods and Turkish Coffee. Coffeemaker designers such as Alan Adler the inventor of the AeroPress and Joe Behm the inventor of the Brazen coffeemaker conduct classes on how to use their coffeemakers. Home roasting hobbyists are given space to give roasting demos. The Future of Coffee panel was a new first at CoffeeCon 2014 San Francisco.
CoffeeCon LA was November 8th 2014 and was held at the historic Mack Sennett Studios in Silver Lake. Mack Sennett's real name was Michael Sinnott. He was a silent movie director and produced the KeyStone Cops. Kevin Sinnott stated "It was like a coming home. I believe Mack would be proud that another Sinnott was work at his studio. CoffeeCon sited Mack Sennett Studios historic connection with CoffeeCon's founder.
CoffeeCon NYC was on March 7th the first CoffeeCon of 2015. CoffeeCon Chicago is planned for July 25, 2015.
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