Barista Magazine

I write, interview, and photograph for both the print and digital journals of Barista Magazine– the digital home of the leading trade magazine for the worldwide community of specialty coffee professionals.

I analyze market trends to pitch and deliver stories on topics such Carbon Markets, stem rust, and service industry. Read below!

Three Pillars of Roasting for Cutbow Coffee’s Paul Gallegos

We learn how New Mexico native Paul Gallegos creates and sustains his philosophies.

BY ALEXA ROMANO
SPECIAL TO BARISTA MAGAZINE ONLINE

Photos provided by Alexa Romano

Before the sun rises, before cars accumulate on the freeway, before the city awakens, and before individuals begin to crave their morning cup of coffee, Paul Gallegos is already at least three batches into roasting coffee to keep Cutbow Coffee his café and roastery, stocked with beans.

Cutbow Coffee is nestled in Albuquerque, N.M., where I am currently learning to roast and cup. Paul began roasting in the 1980s under Alfred Peet and continues to roast today. With almost 30 years of roasting experience now, Paul opened Cutbow Coffee in 2018 […] Read More

Exploring Jamaica Blue Mountain Coffee

An informative look into a less common, yet highly sought after, coffee origin.

BY ALEXA ROMANO
SPECIAL TO BARISTA MAGAZINE ONLINE

Have you ever had or served coffee from Jamaica? Perhaps you have not heard about Jamaica’s Blue Mountain coffee-producing region, and you’re unfamiliar with its characteristics—or both. Today we’re going to debunk some myths about what others have to say about Jamaica Blue Mountain coffee and describe the unique features that make Blue Mountain coffee the rarity that it is […] Read More

Carbon Emissions in the Coffee Industry: Part I

We explore the varying levels of coffee’s carbon footprint.

BY ALEXA ROMANO
SPECIAL TO BARISTA MAGAZINE ONLINE

Have you ever thought about the carbon impact that coffee has on our planet? Coffee is a prominent topic both in climate change discussions and sustainability initiatives. Recently, we published an article about a new digital carbon measurement tool that analyzes crop data and assesses its potential future inputs as related to carbon net capture. Today, we’re going to further explore that topic by breaking down carbon emissions in coffee and investigating what companies are doing to combat this. 

Increasingly, companies both large and small are addressing their environmental impact by pledging to reduce their carbon footprint, which can be defined as the amount of greenhouse gases, specifically carbon dioxide, emitted into the atmosphere by something (such as a person’s activities a or a product’s manufacture and transport) during a given period […] Read More

Carbon Emissions in the Coffee Industry: Part II

Agricultural organizations, including coffee-producing groups, take charge of nature-based climate solutions.

BY ALEXA ROMANO
SPECIAL TO BARISTA MAGAZINE ONLINE

Photos provided by Alexa Romano

Our recent first article in this series about carbon and coffee showed how the coffee industry contributes to carbon emissions through growing, transporting, and roasting coffee beans. Lately, many organizations are taking steps toward reducing their carbon footprint. This changes their classifications as carbon neutral, carbon net zero, carbon zero, or carbon negative. 

Agricultural organizations, and even coffee producers themselves, are now taking initiative to implement nature-based farming methods, while local organizations carry out carbon offsetting projects […] Read More

Carbon Emissions in Coffee: Part III

We wrap up our series on carbon in coffee by understanding how social sustainability is crucial to tackling the climate crisis.

BY ALEXA ROMANO
SPECIAL TO BARISTA MAGAZINE ONLINE

Photos by Alexa Romano

Carbon Offsetting Through Coffee

Our three-part series on coffee and carbon has given us strong insight to the voluntary carbon market through a coffee lens. As we’ve learned, the coffee industry generates emissions, especially through roasting and transporting coffee, as well as partnering with organizations that generate their own emissions like dairy and packaging suppliers. We’ve also learned that these carbon credits must be verified under certain standards, many of which are related to projects that restore and protect natural environments. Some of these projects motivate agricultural producers and communities to develop restoration and conservation practices. 

However, does coffee have a future in the voluntary carbon market? Can coffee production be a nature-based solution to decarbonization? In this final edition of “Carbon Emissions in Coffee,” we discuss how solid socioeconomic foundations could be the most important place to start […] Read More

‘Trouble Brewing: De-Escalation Techniques for Baristas

October + November 2021 Issue of Barista Magazine

Baristas work on the literal frontlines of service. In that position, especially over the last year and a half, they’ve been thrust into an unwelcome position where they’re responsible for enforcing health and safety measures. As customers rebel and act out against the rules necessary to combat the global pandemic, baristas are finding themselves more and more in the role of social worker trying to calm down irate customers and keeping their cafés working. In “Trouble Brewing: De-Escalation Techniques for Baristas,“ writer Alexa Romano gives insight, resources, and best practices to help keep conflict out of the coffee shop […] Read Here

Coffee Leaf Rust and Its Effect on Hawai’i Coffee

We explore how coffee leaf rust has impacted the world over the last several decades, and how it recently affected coffee-growing regions in Hawai’i.

BY ALEXA ROMANO
SPECIAL TO BARISTA MAGAZINE ONLINE

Photos by Alexa Romano

Coffee leaf rust (CLR) is a disease caused by the fungus Hemileia vastatrix. This destructive disease affects coffee trees and has spread like an epidemic throughout the world’s coffee-producing regions, including Asia, South America, Central America, Africa, and now Hawai’i […] Read Here

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