USBC Finals: Pete Licata
Pete Licata - Honolulu Coffee Co.
Pete begins sharing the story of his introduction to this Kona coffee. He refers judges to the flavor tasting cards on the table and goes to work preparing the honeyd coffee, 3 specific tastes as he experienced them. Red typica, 1800 ft. Rusty’s Hawaiian, he picked himself, pulped them, and saved the cascara to make a tea representing the first taste he had of this coffee. He let it cure in the parchment for three months. The 2nd taste was in Honolulu, a light roast of the coffee that he cupped, and noted flavors that he showcases in a French press. The 3rd tasting was as an espresso. He pulls the shots, lets them cool for a moment, and then pours the tea thru a cloth filter. He explores the sugars from the mucelig, sour fruit notes, and the parchment has a grain flavor. French press focuses on the sweetness of chocolate and caramel, natural acidity. Roasted longer for espresso which translates to more sweetness and subduing the big acidity and natural fruit flavors. Taste them as tea, French press, and then espresso, from light flavors to heavy flavors, sweetness translating through the three. Coffee is balanced and sweet, but not very complex.
In his cappuccinos, he’s going to introduce another coffee which will improve the complexity. Caramel sweetness in the crema ring, dried ginger in the bottom of the cup. The natural coffee, also from Rusty’s Hawaiian, is both red & yellow caturra which Pete dried on raised screens for 3 weeks and cured in the fruit for 3 months. Wow.
Found another coffee on Kona which he pulped, and did two separate 12 hour dry fermentations with a rinse between that cleaned up this coffee a lot.
Ask judges to evalute crema, stir and take in the nose of tropical fruit. Wants them to wait a moment until it cools. 50% of honey, 35% of washed and 15% of natural. He layered the coffees together. Meyer lemon, blackberry, chocolate and caramel in the cup.
Thanks judges, calls time at 14:56.
Why he could be Champ: Pete is back again in the USBC finals, and has been here before. He is the SWRBC champion, one of two regional champions who made it thru to finals. He’s been intimately involved in all steps of his coffee’s production, from selection and harvest to process to roast, and this hands-on knowledge can really help the judge’s connect. Two competitor’s from Honolulu Coffee were in the semi finals, proving their coffee has merit here. Pete has been focused throughout the weekend and has been seen in the competitor’s prep room and lounge with his headphones and iPod, presumably going thru his routine in his head. Anytime you see a regional champion in the finals, you know they are a front-runner.