Meet SCASA Vice Chairman, Alessandro Morrico April 02 2019

Meet Alessandro Morrico, the quintessential coffee connoisseur. Alessandro is a Director at Morrico Specialist Coffee Supplies, the Vice Chairman of SCASA, the National Head Judge and holds a SCAA diploma, amongst many other things. Alessandro knows coffee and its mechanics very well and has been a pillar in our industry for quite some time as he embodies coffee’s la dolce vita...

How did you end up working in the coffee industry?
When I was five, I had my first latte macchiato and later at 13 when I began making espressi in my father’s restaurant in Rosebank. By 18 I was training, becoming a qualified technician in an Italian firm for the espresso industry.

What excites you about the coffee industry?
The constant research and methods used particularly in development and farming and the processing of the beans, as well as the research and technology used in the search for the optimum extraction and consistency.

Has South Africa’s coffee industry grown? Are we on par with the rest of the world?
Has grown tons literally, but not on par with globe yet. Watch this space!

As a SCASA BoD member what you like to see more of in the future (in the industry)?
Camaraderie amongst members and more respect. Less politics and more fun, cause that's what coffee should be about. Higher standards and commitment, leading to better quality in more cafes.

What skills in your opinion should a barista or coffee professional have to be considered good?
Someone who refers to themselves as a “barista” ought to be very good at making coffee amongst other things. Any one missing skill on the list and the individual is NOT a barista, perhaps wanting training or becoming but NOT YET a barista. This term, on this side of the world has been abused. 

What can coffee shops do to create more awareness for specialty coffee?
Serve delicious coffee consistently, irrespective of where it came from and who roast it.

Any memorable SCASA coffee event moments you would like to share with us?
Any event, from the first to the last event, they're all memorable – it’s a party of enthusiastic coffee individuals supporting each other for the sake of spreading quality, appreciation, method and education – you gotta love it!

What is currently your favourite coffee, how are you brewing it, and why?
I love the richness of the central Americans as espresso and the exquisite complex aromas and flavours of recent Indian and Asian naturals on a cupping table. Why? It's the two extremes of roasted coffee. First step you cup it, then sell it, grind it and put it through an espresso machine for the rest of the world to drink. 

What’s your advice or motivation to current and/or aspiring coffee professionals out there?
If you love it and respect it, don’t stop! Do it right always, and success is only a matter of time.

Photos: Facebook/MorricoSA / Charina Bartlett (HeSheDigital)