Uses This

Interview

What do people use to get the job done?

Katie O'Shea
Photo by Matthew Staver.

Katie O'Shea

Barista, bike fanatic

Who are you, and what do you do?

Katie O'Shea: barista at Intelligentsia Coffee & Tea in Venice, CA; bike dork.

What hardware do you use?

Coffee hardware: Espresso: Custom-built Synesso Hydra (two-group) espresso machine with wood & glass panelling. Coffee: Hario V60 ceramic dripper with paper filters; Chemex 6-cup glass woodneck with paper filters/Coava Kone metal filter; Bodum 8-cup French Press. Grinders: Mazzer Robur E & Mazzer Super Jolly (in the shop), Rancilio Rocky & Red Rooster Camano hand grinder (at home).

Bike hardware: Puch Olympia 53cm cyclocross frame, stripped of paint to showcase the gunmetal-grey frame & the lovely brass brazing at the lugs; Motobecane Mirage 50cm road frame, powder blue with white components. Steel is real.

And what software?

Coffee software: Black Cat Classic Espresso (a blend that aims for a baker's-chocolate-&-black-cherry flavor profile throughout the year, though its components change based on what is in season & what is currently in stock, usually at least 80% Brazilian espresso & coffee from one other country, often from East Africa); a seasonal espresso blend (right now it's the Honey Badger espresso, which is comprised of two Brazilian micro-lots & one Kenyan micro-lot to create a caramelly, dried-apricot, tamarind flavor); rotating single-origin espresso like such as Los Inmortales El Salvador: El Pino, La Tortuga Honduras, Cruz del Sur Peru.

Bike software: Too many to easily list here, but the mains are: Brooks saddles, Sugino cranksets (the Motobecane is single-speed, the Puch is fixed), Dia-Compe (cyclocross-style) brake levers. Matching toe straps, saddles, & handlebar tape (dark brown on the paint-stripped Puch, white on the blue Motobecane). The Motobecane is still, & forever, in progress, but the Puch is mostly built up the way I like it.

What would be your dream setup?

My dream set-up would be a bike/coffee shop that offers fully-built frames, parts, & service for randonneur-style touring bikes as well as specialty coffee & home brewing equipment. No cream or sugar.