The Oregon Convention Center (OCC) opened the first of two brand new cafes operated by Roast Magazine’s 2012 Macro Roaster of the Year, Portland Roasting Coffee.
In a grand opening event held earlier this week, representatives from the coffee company, convention and tourism industries, and local food product companies celebrated the introduction of Portland’s highly touted coffee culture to visitors from across the globe through a coffee tasting, or “cupping” ceremony, in which small cups of freshly roasted coffee are infused with boiling water and evaluated for aroma and flavor profiles, among other elements.
“Portland has earned the reputation as a city with distinct taste for quality, small-batch coffee and a commitment to sustainability,” said Karen Totaro, OCC’s assistant executive director. “By offering Portland Roasting as our exclusive coffee in our catering and cafes, convention visitors from around the world can literally taste the essence of Portland during their stay.”
The new café was designed with the Pacific Northwest aesthetic in mind; a large slab of reclaimed Oregon old-growth fir frames the entrance and also serves as the platform for tables and the coffee bar inside. While the beans are sourced from locations throughout the world through fair trade agreements, the coffee is roasted just blocks from the OCC at the company’s headquarters, and delivered in compostable bags by bike. Café cups and utensils are biodegradable and a host of local food companies are represented in the baked goods and refreshments offered to café customers.
Totaro cited Portland Roasting’s dedication to environmental stewardship, ranging from global water protection and resource initiatives to operating a zero-carbon facility, as primary reasons the partnership works for OCC.
“We take sustainability very seriously at OCC and we’re proud to be considered a sustainability leader in the convention center industry,” said Totaro. She added, “Partnerships with local companies such as Portland Roasting, who share our commitment to sustainability, help us continue to walk our talk.”
Portland Roasting Coffee’s second OCC café is scheduled to open in early 2012.
About Portland Roasting Portland Roasting has been a steadfast pioneer of Portland coffee culture since 1996, navigating the coffee-growing regions of the world to bring the best of each season’s crop to Oregon.
The first coffee company to deliver its products to clients by bike, the company provides coffee through wholesale, retail and online channels as well as through private businesses and institutions. Portland Roasting’s sustainability platform includes the Farm Friendly Direct program and the Northwest’s first biodegradable Ecotainer. Visit www.portlandroasting.com for more information.
About the Oregon Convention Center The Oregon Convention Center is the largest convention center in the U.S. Pacific Northwest and a top meeting destination. It leads the industry in sustainable operations and business practices as the first to earn LEED-EB (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design – Existing Building) in 2004, and in 2008, the first to be recertified LEED-EB Silver. Totaling one million square feet of space, it hosts an average of 650 events and over 700,000 visitors annually. Visit www.oregoncc.org for more information.
The Oregon Convention Center joins the Portland Expo Center, Portland Center for the Performing Arts and Oregon Zoo in a family of visitor venues owned and/or operated by Metro regional government. www.oregonmetro.gov.