MICE final

Why we love MICE and why we think it’s important

This past week we have been showcasing our locally roasted White Horse Coffee and ACME & Co. Cups at the Melbourne International Coffee Expo, affectionately known as MICE. Before we left for Melbourne, we wrote a short article about what MICE is and why you should care (find it here), so we won’t rehash any of that info in this post. Rather, this time we just want to share why we love it and why we think events like this are important.

Our thoughts, inspired by three days of connecting a passionate coffee community with a passionate coffee industry under one roof, fueled by an incredible amount of very good coffee.

Introducing our coffee to the passionate people at MICE
Introducing our coffee to the passionate people at MICE

 

The Coffee

Obviously MICE is about coffee. But not just any coffee – passionately grown, lovingly roasted, beautifully brewed coffee. Yes the best thing about MICE is the impressive quality of the coffee and the dedication of the people who grow, roast and brew it. Every independent roaster had something amazing on offer and all our staff commented on how inspired they were by tasting these coffees.

MICE gives roasters and cafe owners like us the opportunity to showcase our coffee, but also, maybe more importantly, it allows us the chance to experience some of the best coffee in the country roasted and brewed by some of the best Baristas in the world.

There were also several coffee championships being held, from roasting, brewing filter coffee, latte art, cup tasting, as well as the Australian Barista Championships. Watching the dedication of these people made me (Dom) think of my twenties and how much time they’ve invested to get to this level.

Showcasing our White Knight Blend
Showcasing our White Knight Blend

 

And they liked it. Phew!
And they liked it. Phew!

The Inspiration

It’s hard not to be inspired by being immersed in an environment like this. We loved watching our staff walk around the event tasting coffee and chatting to passionate well-educated coffee professionals from different companies. One conversation after another the bar was being raised higher and higher in the specialty coffee movement in Australia. This is good for everyone, the coffee professionals and the community who enjoy our coffee. Already post MICE we have had several meetings on how to improve our store, how we can improve our training and how we can be more involved in the competitive arena next year.

Conan & Braydon brewed like champions
Conan & Braydon brewed like champions

 

Our cups got a lot of love
Our cups got a lot of love

The Community and Camaraderie

The sense of community is strong at MICE. Meeting new people and catching up with old friends is always a good thing. But the community at MICE is so strong that it offers a feeling of togetherness and camaraderie as we all seek the same goal – exceptional coffee experiences.

You’d think by putting many of the big competitors in the Australian specialty coffee scene under one roof would magnify the competitive spirit, but this could not be further from the truth. Of course every brand was seeking to gain attention and deepen love for their brand, but the sense of togetherness is much stronger than the sense of competition between the brands that were there.

After all, we’re in the hospitality business and true to form, the goodwill and generosity was impressive. We sensed a high level of maturity in the industry and most understand that there is enough room for all of us and as the specialty coffee culture spreads it wings there is more than enough opportunity to go around.

We had a constant flow of people coming to our stand having been sent by other coffee brands. It was common to hear “such and such coffee said we should come over and try your coffee, they said it was delicious” And of course we returned the favour by recommending other coffee brands to try. We’d like to pay particular respect to the following brands that made us some very special coffee.

  • Toby’s Estate
  • Ona Coffee
  • Axil Coffee Roasters
  • Five Senses
  • Veneziano

The camaraderie and sense of team was also strong amongst ourselves as we travelled together and worked alongside each other doing what we love. We get that on a daily basis at home, but there’s something more profound in a shared experience of showcasing our coffee to a new and wider audience.  

John from Toby's Estate showing Abhi incredible setup
John from Toby’s Estate showing Abhi their incredible setup

 

Dinner with the crew at Higher Ground
Dinner with the crew at Higher Ground

The Cafes

And lastly, while we were in Melbourne, as always we make a commitment to visit as many fine coffee establishments as possible. So in the early hours of the morning before MICE opened it’s doors we walked the dark streets of Melbourne in search of the best coffee we could find. Thanks to the following cafes that brewed us remarkably special coffee.  

  • Patricia Coffee Brewers
  • Auction Rooms
  • Slater Street Bench
  • Axil Coffee Roasters
  • St Ali
  • Kettle Black
  • Market Lane
St Ali
St Ali

 

Auction Rooms
Auction Rooms

 

Slater St Bench
Slater St Bench

 

Axil Coffee Roasters
Axil Coffee Roasters

 

Patricia
Patricia Coffee Brewers

 

We were very spoilt by the hospitality of the Melbourne coffee scene and the wonderful people at MICE! Have we inspired you to think about going to MICE next year?

We hope so.

Dom & Darryn

PS. And by the way we also won a Bronze for our White Knight blend.

MICEAward

2 comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Dom & Abhi

Specialty Coffee Radio Interview with 2SSR

Last week an Dom and Abhi were interviewed about specialty coffee on radio 2SSR. Since the interview played live last Thursday we’ve had so many customers say how much they loved the it and wanted to listen to it again. We’ve also had quite a few customers say they missed out on listening to it live. …

WH-1051 sml

What is MICE and why you should care?

MICE stands for the Melbourne International Coffee Expo which started a few years ago in 2012. The first year was viewed as a testing ground for the 2013 World Barista Championship which was held in Melbourne as part of the MICE event the following year. MICE is now known throughout Asia Pacific as the largest …

Sign up and get helpful info on how to make great coffee and go in the draw to win our Fresh Roasted Coffee delivered to your door.