Got back yesterday from Dublin, having given a talk for the SCAE Irish chapter, and being hosted by Marco.
I hope the lecture went well (I get my feedback forms soon, so I will know for sure then!) I think I achieved what I set out to do, and that was to show people something that they would struggle to see anywhere else. I wanted people to go away with a lot of questions about their coffee, to talk less of strict rules and more of the guidance of taste.
It was a fairly well attended talk, with 40 of the top coffee people in Ireland there.
Joe Smith introuduces me:
It would have been nice if I could have spent some time with the coffee I was using before hand to get to know it a bit better. However it was nice to introduce the concept of brew recipes particular to every coffee to some people there.
What tied in with all this was the book I read on the way over. I picked up a collection of short works by Richard Feynman. (Perhaps I thought I could learn something of explaining difficult subjects to audiences from one of the great masters!). I can see why his style is often called infectious – it makes me want to be a proper scientist! What I really want to take away from it is his approach to science, the necessity of doubt – not only for progress but for integrity. Teaching as I do it can be all too easy to make bold statements of fact, and what I want to do is more actively question them, examine them and learn more. I identify quite strongly with the desire to have the experience of a new understanding, that incredible pleasure from finding something out.