Chicago Coffee Con - 2018
Chicago Coffee Con - 2018

2018 Presenters


Kenneth Davids at CoffeeConChi 2018

Kenneth Davids – Author, Editor, Coffee Review

Kenneth Davids is editor, chief writer and co-founder of Coffee Review. He has been involved with coffee since the early 1970s and has published three books on coffee, including the influential Home Roasting: Romance and Revival, now in its second edition, and Coffee: A Guide to Buying, Brewing and Enjoying, which has sold nearly 250,000 copies in five editions with a sixth edition scheduled for 2017. His workshops and seminars on coffee sourcing, evaluation and communication have been featured at professional coffee meetings on six continents. In 1996 he was awarded a Special Achievement Award for Outstanding Contributions to Coffee Literature by the Specialty Coffee Association of America.

Tim Coonan at CoffeeConChicago 2018

Tim Coonan - Founder Big Shoulders Coffee

Tim Coonan is the owner of Big Shoulders Coffee, a coffee roasting company that has woven service into its fabric. 35+ years working in hospitality has him taught how to hustle hard, recognize the contributions of those around him me and pay attention to the details. Tim uses a pragmatic approach to problem solving and leadership. I also enjoy a good cup of coffee with friends.

Rebecca Siahaan at CoffeeConChicago 2018

Rebecca Siahaan - Barista Trainer Colectivo Coffee Roasters

Rebecca Siahaan has worked in coffee for 12 years. In her 9 years at Colectivo Coffee Roasters, she worked at several cafes in the Milwaukee area as a barista, a shift leader, and head barista before becoming a full-time Barista Trainer in 2015. Rebecca an SCA Intermediate Barista, and has dabbled in barista competitions as a judge and competitor, and coach. 

Daniel Kvist at CoffeeConChicago 2018

Daniel Kvist - In-House Barista Bodum

Daniel Kvist, originally from Denmark, a.k.a. The Great Dane (He’s 6”4’). Daniel has lived in New York for 6 years, and spent the last 2 working for Bodum. His works as in-house barista and global coffee event manager, so he’s always on the road. French Press is Daniel’s preferred coffee during the week, but he gladly pulls out the Siphon on the weekends.

Scott Marquardt at CoffeeCon Chicago 2018

Scott Marquardt - Roaster, Entrepreneur

Scott Marquardt has been craft roasting for fun and farmers markets for a dozen years. His experience is almost entirely with DIY roasting devices. This session will introduce the fundamentals of home roasting, presenting various DIY and commercially available devices. You’ll also become acquainted with some excellent online resources, and there’ll be plenty of time for Q&A.

 Justin Doggett at CoffeeCon Chicago 2018

Justin Doggett - Founder Kyoto Black

Justin Doggett is the owner and founder of Kyoto Black, a Chicago-based company that focuses on Kyoto style slow drip cold brew.

NATHA TUNGWONGSAKUL at CoffeeCon Chicago 2018

Natha Tungwongsalkul- Head Roaster BattleCat Coffee

NATHA TUNGWONGSAKUL(HEAD ROASTER):  Her heritage us Thai. She lived in Las Vegas for 4 years and started in coffee since 18 years old. 

In fall of 2016, she moved to NYC and started working for Brownsville Roasters where her signature drinks were on the menu and she started helping out the head roaster.
She met Kevin in that realm and the two began the new journey of BattleCat Coffee. 
Vova Kagan at CoffeeCon Chicago 2018

Vova Kagan - Founding Member Sputnik Coffee

Vova Kagan is one of the founders of Sputnik Coffee, a Chicago based coffee company that believes delicious coffee can be affordable. This class will focus on how to make a great cup of coffee with a Hario V60 and have a fun time while you are at it.

David Mor at CoffeeCon Chicago 2018

David Mor - Beverage Director Cindy’s Rooftop, Chicago Athletic Association Hotel

David Mor is the beverage director at Cindy’s Rooftop, a premiere restaurant and bar, located in the Chicago Athletic Association Hotel in the Loop.

Ethan Fackler at CoffeeCon Chicago 2018

Ethan Fackler - Founder Chicago Bean Scene

Coming from the consumer side of the coffee business, Ethan Fackler is striving to help make specialty coffee not only more accessible, but more approachable. After years of travel to the country’s top roasters & coffee shops, he decided to form “Chicago Bean Scene” specifically to allow consumers to more easily refine their coffee preferences. Tasting various origins, varietals, processes, etc… side by side, in the judgement free comfort of their own home, via a carefully curated combination of smaller sized coffee samples, allows for greater exploration & enthusiasm. With a background in business, both as a distributor and manufacturer of industry-leading products, he brings a refreshing sense of collaboration to the partnerships he’s built with a multitude of Chicagoland roasters, both big and small. Their common goal is that of “Sharing Chicago One Cup at a Time”®️
Brandon Weidman at CoffeeCon Chicago 2018

Brandon Weidman - Founding Director Beto's Coffee Company

Brandon Weidman is the founding director of Beto’s Coffee Company, a nonprofit coffee initiative that repurposes waste materials from the coffee industry into merchandise and apparel. He and his wife, Hannah, have lived in Nicaragua since 2012 where they have served as directors of an international non-profit focused on community development in oppressed communities around the globe.  Brandon opened a cafe in Masatepe, Nicaragua, in 2013, and has spent the past 5 years working to better understand the relationship between coffee consumption and coffee farming and how we can all think more effectively about impacting the communities where coffee is grown.

Karalynn M. McDermott at CoffeeCon Chicago 2018

Karalynn M. McDermott, Senior Vice President, BUNN

Since 1987, Karalynn has been in the coffee brewing equipment manufacturing aspect of the industry focusing on strategic marketing, product development, and sales channel development.  Karalynn’s understanding and passion for the science of brewing extraction has allowed her to aid roasters and micro-roasters with recipe development for their coffee programs.  She has assisted operators to adopt innovative new technologies such as thermal servers, pulse brewing, and trifecta®  – single cup, BUNNlink- Remote Equipment Management to enhance their coffee programs.

In 1997, she was part of a grassroots effort to resurrect the Golden Cup(r) Award after it had been dormant for 40 years.  Karalynn led the “Brew Crew” that authored and taught the Brewing Fundamentals curriculum for the Specialty Coffee Association of America.  In addition, she served on the SCAA Board of Directors from 2000 – 2004, receiving the Special Recognition Award from the association in 2004.  She is currently an Authorized SCA Trainer ® (AST) and has achieved the Professional Brewing Level certification.

Karalynn is Senior Vice President of Market Development with BUNN. She has earned the Certified Food Service Professional®, the industry certification for the Foodservice Industry.  Outside of work, Karalynn is passionate about tandem bike riding and hiking with her family.

Harry Winkler at CoffeeConChicago 2018

Harry Winkler - Barista Trainer La Colombe Coffee Roaster

RoastersHarry Winkler is a barista trainer with the Philadelphia-based La Colombe Coffee Roasters.  He’s spent years mastering the art of the pour and teaching others how to do the same.  Join him as he demonstrates the techniques behind those beautiful designs you see in the cup.  He’ll cover everything you need to know to pour like a true barista: from steaming the perfect milk, tweaking your espresso, and pouring classic designs like the rosetta and tulip.  

Jim Ephraim at CoffeeCon Chicago 2018

Jim Ephraim, father of the SRM

Jim was chief designer of the SRM-4555— the world’s smallest roller-style coffee grinder. The SRM is regarded by many as the greatest gourmet coffee grinder ever produced for accurate particle size reduction, which has become a staple in the cold brew industry. Jim also led the development of several grinding automation improvements and has worked on several patents related to coffee processing.

Jim has led other companies in the industrial engineering field over his career. In 2015 he returned to Modern Process Equipment as General Manager. MPE is the leading process engineering and coffee equipment manufacturer with over 50% worldwide market share for industrial coffee grinders and tubular drag conveyors. He holds a BSME from University of Missouri and MBA from Penn State.


Cathy Bouchard at CoffeeConChicago 2018

Cathy Bouchard - Founder Le Chocolat

Thanks to her long journey from a life dedicated to the artistry of fashion design to the artistry of chocolate, for the past dozen years local residents have been the fortuitous beneficiaries of Cathy Bouchard’s shift in passion.

But it was more than simply a sweet tooth that led Bouchard to explore the wonders of chocolate. Her investigations into the healing properties of cacao to help alleviate the effects of fibromyalgia eventually led to the opening of her namesake shop in downtown Naperville, which has become a combination of chocoholic Eden, peaceful oasis and civic institution.
Robert Wallach at CoffeeCon Chicago 2018

Robert Wallach - Founding Partner, Co-inventor Coffee Freshness System

Robert is a founding partner and co-inventor of the Coffee Freshness System which utilizes pressurized CO2 gas to preserve the freshness of roasted coffee beans. He has a degree in Chemical Engineering and has previously worked in the Semiconductor Industry of Silicon Valley. The search for a better way to preserve coffee beans for home brewing led Robert to study the science of coffee staling extensively and in 2012 to partner with a Mechanical Engineer and develop the Coffee Freshness System. Robert is passionate about the field of Coffee Freshness and is eager to share his knowledge on this subject at CoffeeCon Chicago.

Jesse Raub at CoffeeCon Chicago 2018

Jesse Raub - Educator Ruby Coffee Roasters

Jesse Raub has worked with coffee for over twelve years. He spent eight years managing Wholesale Education for Intelligentsia Coffee, and recently took a role with Ruby Coffee Roasters managing Wholesale, Education, and Events. He loves finding new ways to make coffee brewing accessible.
Sam Lowe at CoffeeCon Chicago 2018

Sam Lowe - Roaster Allegro Coffee Roasters

Sam Lowe has been roasting for Allegro Coffee Roasters’ Midwest satellite since it’s opening in March 2017. Sam comes from Bloomington, Indiana, where he worked as a barista for the locally-famous Runcible Spoon Café and Restaurant.

KEVIN LEAL at CoffeeCon Chicago 2018

Kevin Leal - Founder Battle Cat Coffee

Kevin has been in coffee since the late 90’s. He started a non-profit program from a small leadership program which now has become called BattleCat Barista Training Program (BCBT). The goal is to empower and enable baristas to be present to their greatness. To enroll shops and restaurants to take a  closer look at their wholesale costs. His program provides a barista that can roast, sell and distribute their own coffee. 


Nick Selman at CoffeeCon Chicago 2018

Nick Selman

Nick is CEO and Co-Founder of Javaya: the one-stop-shop for the best specialty coffee in the U.S., shipped to your doorstep at the peak of freshness. Javaya’s secret sauce is its Future Fresh® Date innovation which guarantees your coffee ships within hours of roasting. Previous to co-founding Javaya, Nick was a business leader with over a decade of experience providing strategic vision and growth to organizations of various sizes from both management and sales positions. His early career as a Mechanical Engineer afforded him a strong analytical background from which to understand customer needs, develop elegant solutions amid complex business requirements, and envision where the proverbial puck is headed. Through these experiences, he has developed an understanding of how Strategy actually works at the “nuts and bolts,” front lines level of organizations that are not common in today’s leaders.


Tim Taylor at CoffeeCon Chicago 2018

Tim Taylor

Tim Taylor is founder of Ipsento Coffee–a Chicago based farm-to-table roaster and retailer. He has since sold the company and remains in the coffee sector as an independent contractor. Tim has been working in specialty coffee since 2007–gaining experience in virtually every role in the trade. He serves on the board of the Alliance for Coffee Excellence which governs the renown Cup of Excellence competition. He is frequently called upon as a coffee resource to the press. Tim’s favorite coffee changes nearly every week.


Emile Chaillot at CoffeeCon Chicago 2018

Emile Chaillot - Grey Goose Ambassador - Chicago

Born in Paris, Emile Chaillot began his carrier by collaborating with the most well-known venues in Paris.

In 2002, “L’Etoile” one of the most prestigious bar restaurant recruited him, where he performed as head- bartender, redesigned cocktails and trained new staff.

Two years later, he operated as Head-Bartender at “Poona Lounge” where he designed the bar’s first creative cocktail list, drink menu and handled the bar management.

Then, he accomplished a consultancy mission at “L’Aventure” to upgrade their standards and come up with creative cocktails.

In April 2005, “Doobie’s”, the friendliest and delightful private bar in Paris, contacted Emile to work as cocktail bartender designer for 1-1⁄2 years.

He completed successfully 2006 by obtaining the “operating bar manager” position for the opening of the new trendy Paris cocktails bar “L’Eclaireur”. He was in command of the entire bar logistic, staff training and developed exclusive drinking concepts.

He organized successful cocktails events in partnership with prestigious spirits brand which trusted his knowledge. He promoted tailor-made cocktails recipes on promotional videos for well-established brand spirits companies.

Emile acquired the gratitude of his peers by positioning “L”Eclaireur” as one of the top 6 mixology & cocktails bar in Paris within a year.

In January 2008, Emile decided to move ahead and move to New York and to acquire a different lifestyle experience throughout bars and cocktails culture.
Firstly, he was hired at “Lea lounge NYC” and redesigned the drink menu.
Then, he was recruited as bar supervisor by the famous bar lounge “230 Fifth rooftop Garden” overlooking the emblematic Empire State Building.

Furthermore, in November 2008 he crossed the globe towards Sydney, Australia. He was enrolled at the “IVY Pool Club” where he operated until March 2009, and at the same time he was a bartender instructor for Mr. Alex Beaumont’s bar school, Vice-President IBA (International Bartender Association).

In late mid 2009, he kept on travelling and stopped in Hong Kong to collaborate with some prestigious brand spirits companies such as Campari Gruppo & Moet Hennessy. He conducted bar training sessions, based on products, drinks, service rituals, and bar mechanics.

Late 2010, Emile made his way back to Paris to operate as an independent beverage consultant. He kept on traveling the world, running seminars and presentations on Bars and Restaurants conventions across the globe, sharing his knowledge and experience with others.

In December 2010. He was labeled as “Cognac Educator” with “Mention du Jury” by the BNIC (Bureau Interprofessional du Cognac)

Moreover, he has been collaborating with most prestigious venues and bars in France and worldwide, and major beverage spirits companies such as Pernod-Ricard, Chivas Brothers, Campari Gruppo and MBWS GROUP to develop either their training programs, signatures drinks and strategies.

Early 2014, Emile beginning his adventure with Grey Goose Vodka as the Ambassador for Le Logis, the brand home of Grey Goose Vodka, where was collaborating on daily based with the creator of the liquid, Mr. Francois Thibault. Between 2015 and 2017, Emile was spreading the love and the passion of Grey Goose Vodka into the French market before taking the current position at the Ambassador for Chicago in August 2017.