Category: Arts:Food

Colin Harmon and Stephen Leighton Talk Coffee and host live talks from people in the coffee community.

TT SF: Trish Rothgeb (Wrecking Ball Coffee Roasters)

December 22, 2017

We’ve made it a habit the past few years running to release what we feel is a particularly special or insightful video right before the holiday season in the hopes that it sneaks into your (sub)conscious as you think about the year coming to a close and think about what it is you want to achieve in the year ahead.

There’s been a lot written this year questioning who we are as a community, what it means to work in coffee, and what’s coming next. Many of the questions seemed to focus on where we are as an industry: are we on the fourth wave, or the fifth wave? The sixth? What’s a wave, anyway? Although she’s “not the ‘wave oracle’,” returning speaker Trish Rothgeb is credited creation of the phrase “third wave coffee” (FlameKeeper, 2002) and has often been asked to give her take on the state of the industry. 

Here, recorded at our event in San Francisco, Trish delves into what inspired her to talk about coffee in waves all those years ago – something until now that she has previously brushed off in conversation - and what it means for coffee’s future. We hope this talk inspires you not only to learn more about the history, concepts, and people that Trish highlights in this talk, but also to impact how you think about coffee, our industry, and the work that needs to be done.

Photo by Cris Mendoza (Saint Frank Coffee)

Trish Rothgeb is the co-founder, owner, director of coffee, and roastmaster at Wrecking Ball Coffee Roasters in San Francisco.

Her experience in the industry spans over 30 years as a coffee roaster, green coffee buyer, and teacher of all things coffee. An avid traveler in coffee growing regions worldwide, she teaches “cupping” to coffee producers and coffee professionals around the world. She is also credited with coining the term “third wave coffee” and identifying the relevant concepts.

Trish is a licensed Q Grader and credentialed Q Trainer by the Coffee Quality Institute. She has served on the SCAA’s Roasters Guild Executive Council, was a charter member of the World Barista Championship Board of Directors and a founding member of the Barista Guild of America.

From 2013 to 2016, Trish worked on staff at the Coffee Quality Institute (CQI) as the “Director of Programs: Q and Educational Services,” in addition to her work with Wrecking Ball Coffee Roasters.