A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from April 07, 2009
Barista

"Barista” is the Italian word for “bartender.” By at least 1964 (according to an English citation below), the “barista” was a person in an Italian coffee bar who worked the espresso machine. “Barista” began to be used in coffeehouses in the United States by 1988. By the early 1990s, the term “barista” was used for the employee who concocts the drinks at Seattle’s Starbucks coffee chain.


Wikipedia: Barista
In English, barista is a name applied to a person, usually a coffeehouse employee, who prepares and serves espresso-based coffee drinks. The word is borrowed from Italian, where it has a wider meaning of “bartender”. The term persists in American coffeehouse jargon, with many employers such as Starbucks officially utilizing the title for such employees. Often, among coffee enthusiasts, the term is reserved for one who has acquired some level of expertise or particular skill in the preparation of such drinks. Within certain circles, its meaning is expanding to include what might be called a “coffee sommelier” — a professional who is highly skilled in coffee preparation with a comprehensive understanding of coffee, coffee blends, espresso, quality, coffee varieties, roast degree, espresso equipment and maintenance, latte art, etc. Stephen Morrissey of Ireland is the current World Barista Champion.

The word barista is of Italian origin. In Italy, a barista is a “bartender”, who typically works behind a counter, serving both hot drinks (such as espresso), and cold alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages. The plural in English is baristas, while in Italian the plural is baristi for masculine or mixed sex (baristi: “barmen”, “bartenders”) or bariste for feminine (bariste: “barmaids”).

Kick Butt Coffee
What is a Barista?
Written by Michael Pollick
If you were to visit a bar or coffeeshop in Italy, you might very well encounter a uniformed bartender called a barista. In Italy, a barista is a trained mixologist familiar with both alcohol and coffee-based drinks. He or she might even wear an elaborate jacket similar to that of a bandmaster or military officer. A barista is usually treated as a respected specialist, in the same vein as a wine steward or sommelier.

When the gourmet coffee industry exploded onto the scene during the 1980s and 1990s, however, the term barista took on a slightly different meaning. A barista in the coffeehouse sense is an expert in producing espresso and espresso-based drinks. Expresso is an intensely-flavored form of coffee generally served in a small cup called a demitasse. In order to brew a perfect cup of espresso, a barista must place a measured amount of ground coffee into a wire basket and tamp it down firmly. The wire basket is then locked under the spout of an espresso machine.

Hudsons Coffee
What is a Barista?
Barista is the Italian term for a professional espresso beverage maker where training can take up to four years. The skill of the Barista can make all the difference between happy and dissatisfied customers.

That’s why we treat our Baristas with great respect, making sure they are trained and tested to consistently make coffee to the highest standards.

Barista Magazine
your home for the worldwide community of coffee and the people who make it.
4! Celebrating Four Years of Barista Magazine!

Merriam-Webster Dictionary
Main Entry: ba·ris·ta
Pronunciation: \bə-ˈrēs-tə, bä-ˈrēs-tä\
Function: noun
Etymology: Italian, person working behind a bar, from bar bar (from English) + -ista 1-ist
Date: 1982
: a person who makes and serves coffee (as espresso) to the public

(Oxford English Dictionary)
barista, n.
[< Italian barìsta (plural barìste; 1939-40) < bar (see BAR n.1 28a) + -ista -IST.]
A bartender in an Italian or Italian-style bar. Also spec. (orig. U.S.): a person who makes and serves coffee in a coffee bar (the more frequent sense in English).
In spec. sense, a proprietary name in the United Kingdom.
1982 P. HOFMAN Rome, Sweet Tempestuous Life 24 A good barista can simultaneously keep an eye on the coffee oozing from the espresso machine into a battery of cups, pour vermouth and bitters..and discuss the miserable showing of the Lazio soccer team.
1988 Boston Globe (Nexis) 13 Dec. 61 A feisty but cordial competitor to the larger caffeine chains the [Boston Coffee] Exchange has unfurled a help-wanted poster titled ‘Learn to be a coffee barista’.
1990 Atlantic Nov. 157/2 This ritual unites all the baristas in Italy. But not everyone accomplishes the layer of light-colored crema, or foam, that is the pride of an expert espresso-maker.
1999 Dominion (Wellington, N.Z.) (Nexis) 24 Feb. (Business section) 24 New bariste undertake an intensive training programme which covers the philosophy, history, and science of coffee, and the psychology of service.
2001 Times 7 Mar. II. 5/1 The key to a good espresso lies in the barista..and whether he or she cares enough to do it right.

Google Books
Cassell’s Beyond the Dictionary in Italian
By P. J. T. Glendening
New York, NY: Funk & Wagnalls
1964
Pg. 31:
caffe (m). Coffee. You go into a bar (often advertised as a bar-gelateria or bar-caffe or pasticceria), order your drink, pay and receive a ticket, which you present to the barista behind another counter together with a ten-lire tip (per person), telling him what you have already paid for.

Google Books
Dictionary of Italian legal terms and relevant definitions
By Joseph Thomas Genco
Published by J.T. Genco
1980
Pg. 30:
barista m. or f. — bar-keep; one who tends or serves in a bar.

New York (NY) Times
FARE OF THE COUNTRY; IN ITALY, ESPRESSO IS THE ELIXIR OF LIFE
By PAUL HOFMANN; PAUL HOFMANN, A FORMER TIMES CORRESPONDENT WHO LIVES IN ROME, IS THE AUTHOR OF ‘’ROME. THE SWEET TEMPESTUOUS LIFE’’ (CONGDON & LATTES).
Published: August 7, 1983
The counterman is called the barista, an expression derived from the word bar that the Italians have borrowed from English. The barista is most often a young man who, in immaculate white, goes through the automatic motions and has the quick reactions of a professional driver. He can field orders from half a dozen patrons at the same time, slam cups under the spouts of his espresso machine, offer his contribution to a loud debate on the soccer championship, and still wink at a woman customer whose appearances have become notably frequent of late.

Many customers will add specifications to their requests: an espresso ristretto (short and dense) or lungo (diluted), in a water glass instead of in the customary ceramic cup, or macchiato (spotted, meaning with a drop of milk), or served with a shot of brandy or without that ring of foam that others like. If patrons don’t sugar their coffee themselves the counterman will ask how sweet, or bitter, they want theirs.

Google Books
Italian Quarterly
By University of California, Los Angeles. Dept. of Italian, Dante Alighieri Society of Los Angeles, University of Massachusetts at Boston
Published by Italian Quarterly, 1986
Item notes: v. 27
Pg. 105:
Valerio, the barista who runs the espresso machine in Daria, is a friend of Annigoni’s and gave me a poster from one of the maestro’s exhibits. 

10 November 1991, Los Angeles (CA) Times, “Seattle Espresso Bars Gather Steam” by Pat Hanna Kuehl, travel, part L, pg. 5:
Seattle coffee isn’t the run-of-the-mill lukewarm, weak and watery stuff most Americans imbibe. It’s serious caffeine. The fix starts with a one- to two-ounce shot of thick, black-as-sin, bitter-tasting essence of the bean extracted by steam pressure. Many Seattleites order double doses, then the barista (Italian for barkeeper) performs variations on the theme. Stand in the vicinity of an espresso counter and you’ll hear gibberish like: “One mondo double skinny latte no foam slammer, one cafe Americano and one espresso macchiato, please.”

Google Books
23 May 1994, New York magazine, “A Starbucks Is Born: Obsessiveness Training at Barista Boot Camp” by Henry Alford, pg. 58:
I WAS LEARNING HOW TO CALL DRINKS. CALLING DRINKS IS the rather elaborate process by which, using a syntax unique to Starbucks coffee bars, a barista (which, you’ll recall, is the correct name for the folks who make your coffee) stationed at the cash register yells out a drink order so that its eccentricities are easily understood by those whose duty it is to make the drink.

Google Books
The Ultimate Barista:
The Definitive Guide to Coffee and the World of the Barista

By David Gee and Matthew Gee
Edition: 2, illustrated
Published by Barista Basics Coffee Academy
2004

Google Books
Barista Techniques:
An Essential Guide to Preparing and Serving Espresso Coffee

By John Doyle
Published by Coffee Training Centre
2005

Google Books
Barista: A Guide to Espresso Coffee
By Jill Adams
Published by Pearson Education Australia
2005

(Trademark)
Word Mark BARISTA
Translations THE ENGLISH TRANSLATION OF THE WORD “BARISTA” IN THE MARK IS “BAR HAND”.
Goods and Services (CANCELLED) IC 042. US 100. G & S: CATERING SERVICES, NAMELY, SUPPLYING COFFEE, TEA, OTHER NON-ALCOHOLIC BEVERAGES AND RELATED PRODUCTS TO OTHERS. FIRST USE: 19881115. FIRST USE IN COMMERCE: 19881210
Mark Drawing Code (1) TYPED DRAWING
Serial Number 73799056
Filing Date May 10, 1989
Current Filing Basis 1A
Original Filing Basis 1A
Published for Opposition October 24, 1989
Change In Registration CHANGE IN REGISTRATION HAS OCCURRED
Registration Number 1578334
Registration Date January 16, 1990
Owner (REGISTRANT) GROEPLER, ELIZABETH A. DBA BARISTA INDIVIDUAL UNITED STATES BOX 722 KENTFIELD CALIFORNIA 94914
(LAST LISTED OWNER) ESPRESSO COFFEE, INC. CORPORATION ASSIGNEE OF COLORADO BUILDING J, UNIT B 3300 AIRPORT ROAD BOULDER COLORADO 80301
Assignment Recorded ASSIGNMENT RECORDED
Attorney of Record THOMAS S. BIRNEY
Type of Mark SERVICE MARK
Register PRINCIPAL
Live/Dead Indicator DEAD
Cancellation Date July 23, 1996

(Trademark)
Word Mark ESPRESSO BARISTA
Translations The English translation of “BARISTA” in the mark is “bartender”.
Goods and Services IC 030. US 046. G & S: coffee. FIRST USE: 19930219. FIRST USE IN COMMERCE: 19930219
Mark Drawing Code (1) TYPED DRAWING
Serial Number 74374640
Filing Date April 2, 1993
Current Filing Basis 1A
Original Filing Basis 1A
Published for Opposition November 30, 1993
Registration Number 1823030
Registration Date February 22, 1994
Owner (REGISTRANT) COFFEE BEAN INTERNATIONAL, INC. CORPORATION OREGON 9120 NE Alderwood Road Portland OREGON 97220
Assignment Recorded ASSIGNMENT RECORDED
Attorney of Record Regina Hauser
Disclaimer NO CLAIM IS MADE TO THE EXCLUSIVE RIGHT TO USE “ESPRESSO” APART FROM THE MARK AS SHOWN
Type of Mark TRADEMARK
Register PRINCIPAL
Affidavit Text SECT 15. SECT 8 (6-YR). SECTION 8(10-YR) 20040411.
Renewal 1ST RENEWAL 20040411
Live/Dead Indicator LIVE

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityFood/Drink • (0) Comments • Tuesday, April 07, 2009 • Permalink