Barista competitions have long been a source of inspiration, innovation, and community-building. This past March, a new twist was put on the usual presentation when Rosso Coffee Roasters
' Cole Torode, a former Canadian national champion we've featured on this blog
before, brought something surprising to the competition table. It was a highly valued Gesha coffee from La Palma y El Tucan in Colombia. But unlike every other coffee presented that weekend in Victoria, BC, this coffee—this rare and expensive coffee—was decaffeinated. And it was Swiss Water he trusted to do the job. Torode says the choice came about when he toured the Swiss Water Process facility last year. "I was learning more about caffeine and getting to taste regular versus decaffeinated coffees," says Torode, who is an owner of Rosso, based in Calgary.