Did you smell the coffee? World-renowned writer, consultant, trainer and author of coffee books Scott Rao was in town recently to conduct a brewing class and workshop with Henry & Sons, a total coffee solutions company.
In late May, Rao — the author of coffee books The Professional Barista’s Handbook, Everything But Espresso, The Coffee Roaster’s Companion, and Espresso Extraction: Measurement and Mastery — trained the Henry & Sons team in the art and science of coffee. Henry & Sons is a company that offers three kinds of goods to the local coffee market: premium roasted coffee beans, top-of-the-line expresso machines and training for coffee shops and companies.
The coffee expert shared a variety of topics ranging from improving roasting skills, manual brewing, espresso extraction and the finer points of coffee science. He mentored the staff, shared coffee secrets, taught them about coffee shop planning, layout and design, and shared trends, new standards and techniques, among others.
Michael Harris Conlin, Henry & Sons president, said he invited Rao to work with his staff to raise the bar of the coffee business in the Philippines. “We pioneered coffee technology in the Philippines in the early 1990’s, and we want to continue to be the leader in this business. We brought Scott Rao here as a longtime partner of our company. He is the best person to help bring us to greater heights as he’s the best in the industry. Nobody comes close to him,” Conlin said.
Conlin described the relationship with Rao as something that will go beyond the workshops, “It is not just a short-term consultation. We will be working with him for years.”
For his part Rao said he was happy that everybody in the company was open and eager to learn more about coffee science, art and technology. “This company has been around for a long time, but the people are just so excited about the idea of learning some more. I like that about them,” Rao said.
“After all the learning and the science stuff, I think what I want people to remember is that coffee is here to be enjoyed and it makes people happy. At the end of the day, people are the most important thing,” Rao added.
Henry & Sons is the coming together of three legacy coffee brands : Boyds Coffee, Conlins Coffee and RICMAS Philippines. The Henry & Sons president said Rao’s workshop will help them develop products in the industry that have not yet been introduced to the market.
“We are going to launch new innovative products soon. It will be exciting,” Conlin said.