Ep 03: "We Were the Punks"


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“We Were the Punks” traces the early days of the World Barista Championships from a rag-tag group of volunteers looking to raise specialty coffee awareness to a powerful, monetizable stage grappling with questions of scale and professionalism. Along the way, co-host Sonja Bjork Grant leads us through stories of spit buckets, snakeskin boots, backstage woes, intensifying competition preparation, and devastating debriefs through interviews with Tone Elian Liavaag, Emma Markland-Webster, Simi Benzadon, Paul Basset, and Heather Perry.
Special Thanks to Our Series & Episode Sponsor, Victoria Arduino
This series of the WCC Podcast is brought to you by Victoria Arduino. Born in the early twentieth century amid social and cultural transformation, Victoria Arduino broke with tradition and focused on progress, a mission it carries forward today. Victoria Arduino advances coffee knowledge and innovates across design, technology, and performance to produce machines that nurture coffee professionals' passion for espresso excellence. For more information, visit victoriaarduino.com. Victoria Arduino: Inspired by your passion.
We’d like to thank Sonja Bjork Grant, our co-host for this episode, and our interviewees for their time in sharing their stories about the early days of the World Barista Championship, in order of appearance: Tone Elian Liavaag, Emma Markland-Webster, Simi Benzadon, Paul Basset, and Heather Perry. Thanks, too, to Igloo Media for use of audio from “Living Coffee with Paul Basset.”
For a full list of those who helped across the entire series, a year-long effort, click here. Series 01 of the World Coffee Championships Podcast is a coffee documentary series produced by James Harper of Filter Productions for the Specialty Coffee Association.
Learn more about this episode of the World Coffee Championships Podcast, made possible with the support of Victoria Arduino, including a full transcript and credits at sca.coffee/sca-news/listen/wcc-podcast/03-we-were-the-punks.

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