Barista Magazine Names Crimson Cup’s Brandon Bir One of 10 Best Coffee Pros to Follow on Instagram

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Columbus, Ohio Coffee Q Grader Brandon Bir has been named one of the 10 best coffee pros to follow on Instagram by Barista Magazine. Bir is the Education and Sustainability Director for Crimson Cup Coffee & Tea.

Brandon Bir, Education and Sustainability Director for Crimson Cup Coffee & Tea
To touch coffee on the farm, and again in the U.S., is one of the more gratifying parts of my job. I feel privileged to work with so many people behind the bean and am excited to share their stories.

When Barista Magazine went looking for the best coffee professionals to follow on Instagram, a coffee Q Grader based in Columbus, Ohio rose to the top. In “The 10 Best Coffee Pros to Follow on Instagram Right Now,” writer Erin Meister called out Brandon Bir’s “contagious enthusiasm” and the “sheer joy he finds in coffee and life” as reasons to follow @BrandonBir.

As the Education and Sustainability Director for Columbus coffee roaster Crimson Cup Coffee & Tea, Bir travels more than 25,000 miles each year to forge relationships with coffee growers in far-flung destinations such as Ethiopia, Guatemala, Honduras, Papua New Guinea and Peru. His Instagram feed flows with stunning images of coffee, coffee growers and coffee country as well as more technical details of the coffee craft from his daily grind at Crimson Cup’s Innovation Lab.

“Brandon’s pure talent and zeal for coffee have been instrumental to Crimson Cup’s growth over the past seven years, “said Founder and President Greg Ubert. “It’s exciting to share in the new coffees, drinks and knowledge he brings home from his travels or develops at our Innovation Lab.”

Describing himself as “a coffee and tea professional with a passion for sustainability and international community development,” Bir said he hopes his newest accolade brings more attention to coffee and the people who grow it. “To touch coffee on the farm, and again in the U.S., is one of the more gratifying parts of my job,” he said. “I feel privileged to work with so many people behind the bean and am excited to share their stories.”

When not trekking up a mountain on a remote farm or developing new drinks at the Innovation Lab in Columbus, Bir can be found representing Crimson Cup at a growing number of stateside coffee events. Most recently, he was one of five top judges at the Golden Bean North America coffee roasting competition and served up coffee mocktails to chefs at the Culinary Vegetable Institute’s Roots Innovate 2017 conference.

In his role as Education Director, Bir and his team develop coffee education courses for both coffee enthusiasts and coffee professionals. Through its 7 Steps to Success coffee franchise alternative program, Crimson Cup helps more than a dozen independently owned coffee shops open each year. The program includes a full range of barista training as well as guidance in everything from choosing a location and hiring staff to marketing and operating profitably.

Bir has honed his craft through intensive coffee education. In 2016, he became one of only 3,500 coffee professionals worldwide to be licensed as a coffee Q Grader and earned an SCA Coffee Taster Certificate. A certified Specialty Coffee Association instructor, he was one of the first 31 graduates of the new SCA Coffee Buyer Pathway and holds Level 2 Certification from the Specialty Tea Institute.

About Crimson Cup Coffee & Tea

Columbus, Ohio coffee roaster Crimson Cup Coffee & Tea is Roast magazine’s 2016 Macro Roaster of the Year. Since 1991, Crimson Cup has roasted sustainably sourced specialty and craft coffee in small batches, which it sells directly to consumers and as wholesale coffee beans. The company also teaches entrepreneurs to run successful coffee houses through its coffee franchise alternative program, which includes a coffee shop business plan. Crimson Cup coffee is available through a community of more than 350 independent coffee houses, grocers, college and universities, restaurants and food service operations across 29 states, Guam and Bangladesh, as well as the company’s own Crimson Cup Coffee Houses. To learn more, visit crimsoncup.com.

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Cheryl Claypoole
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Brandon Bir (center) Education and Sustainability Director for Crimson Cup Coffee & Tea