Coffee fans, this fest is for you: Pour Over Cincy/NKY celebrates shops, roasteries

Posted at 11:31 AM, Nov 15, 2016
and last updated 2016-11-15 12:08:37-05

Cincinnati has its share of food, beer, wine and spirits festivals, but on Sunday a coffee showcase at Newport's Northern Kentucky Incubator Kitchen will underscore the variety of coffee shops and roasteries in the region.

Pour Over Cincy/NKY developed out of a sister festival in Ypsilanti, Michigan, Pour Over Ypsi, which held its second edition on Oct. 23. Cincinnati food writer and 513{eats} editor/co-founder Ilene Ross got the idea from her daughter, Cami Fussey, who founded the Michigan festival in 2015.

“The thought sort of came to me randomly one day that we had an unusually large amount of coffee roasters in a small town in Michigan — maybe we should get them together to show off what great talent and product comes out of Ypsilanti,” Fussey said.

Fussey then wrangled three of her friends to help organize the fest. “We wanted to focus on raising awareness of the variety of quality roasteries and shops in the general area, as well as make people aware of the different kinds of flavors they can taste in each different roast from each different place,” she said.

More than 100 people showed up each year — a good turnout considering Ypsilanti is a town of 19,400 people. Ross visited the inaugural festival and loved what she saw.

“I said, ‘Why can’t we do this in Cincinnati? We should do this in Cincinnati,’” she said. “One thing we can all agree on is that the first thing in the morning we all want a cup of coffee.”

La Terza roasterie will provide some of their brews at the fest.

Mother and daughter joined forces and started planning the Cincinnati edition last year. Ross contacted local shops and roasters, such as Carabello, La Terza, Deeper Roots and Pneuma Coffee. There also will be non-dairy drinks, and Pomeroy, Ohio’s family-owned Snowville Creamery agreed to sponsor the dairy side of the festival.

“All of the beverage events we have in the city are alcohol, so I’m excited that this one isn’t,” Ross said. 

Along with the seven participating cafes and roasteries, three bakeries will provide snacks: Happy Chicks Bakery, Brown Bear Bakery and Grateful Grahams. Pizzeria Locale will have its butterscotch pudding budino on hand, too. Instead of charging participants a booth fee, Ross is allowing them to host for free and sell their products.

“I actually had more food people keep emailing me, saying, ‘Can we be part of it?’” Ross said. “I had to turn people away and say, 'No, I really want this to be coffee focused.'”

Attendees will receive a 12-sample card including four-ounce pours of different roasts and methods of brewing coffee. Among the options:

  • Roger Rose, general manager of Price Hill’s BLOC Coffee Company, said BLOC will serve Deeper Roots beans Armonia La Hermosa and Finca El Jerto as V60 pours, and Amaro Gayo as a Chemex.
  • Smooth Cincy Coffee will have four flavors of its nitro cold brews to taste: Grind (regular nitro), Dark Side (dark chocolate), Buzz'n (hazelnut and honey) and Patch (fall spices).
  • Justin Carabello said he’ll brew Guatemala Geisha Acetenango in a siphon; make “an Aeropress affogato" with natural-processed Salvador coffee from Finca Himalaya, poured over pumpkin gelato from Madisono's Gelato; and offer a “mystery brew method.”

Ross said she’s more of a food expert than a coffee expert, but she does consume a lot of coffee.

A double shot of espresso from BLOC Coffee Company. (Photo provided by BLOC.)

“I drink my coffee black, typically,” she said. “As long as it’s really strong, I’m happy.”

She said she will be satisfied if at least 300 people attend the festival; a favorable response will make it possible for Pour Over Cincy/NKY to become an annual event.

“I’m just really proud of what our city has to offer — just as with our food scene — and I’m excited to see what the festival does to highlight it,” she said. 

Fussey also will be at the fest, rooting for her mom and her hometown.

“It’s awesome to be able to bring something I started with my friends in the place I live now as an adult back to the place where I grew up,” she said. “Cincinnati is another town that appreciates the variety and quality you can find with small, local roasteries, and I'm happy to see Pour Over grow there.”

Pour Over Cincy/NKY: A Local Coffee Showcase

When: 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 20
Where: Northern Kentucky Incubator Kitchen, 517 W. Seventh St., Newport
Tickets: $10 online, $12 at the door
Bonus: Some of the proceeds will benefit Food 4 Farmers and the Ohio Valley Chapter of Chefs Collaborative.