Ryan Jones was the champion of New Orleans’ third Thursday Night Throwdown, held March 19, 2015. You can find Ryan working at Mojo Coffee House on Freret Street.
Where are you from?
How did you get into coffee?
In college I started working at a PJ’s that my Aunt’s high school friend owned. Eventually I grew out of that place and landed at Mojo.
What do you love about coffee in Nola?
New Orleans is just such a small city, and it makes the coffee community that much more close-knit. There’s so much variety and a lot of really cool people here who are willing to share their interests, too. The coffee community really shares in the same laid back attitude the city as a whole has.
What’s your favorite espresso/milk ratio and/or cup type for latte art?
I prefer to drink a cortado or just straight espresso. But for art purposes… those 8 oz cups are marvelous.
The Mojo Coffee crew has made a strong showing at all of the TNT events so far. What is your group dynamic like? How does that contribute to your barista life?
Everyone at Mojo shares the same love for coffee, so I find that all the employees are pretty easy to get along with. Our boss (Demian Estevez) loves to encourage us to do better and is always trying to educate and share with us his passion for coffee as well. We have a lot of Mojo gatherings, and get a lot of Mojo support, so at the throwdowns we love to come out and support each other, even if not everyone is throwing down.
What are your thoughts on the prize packages? How does the community support make you feel?
SO MANY PRIZES. Makes me feel great that all these people, and not just coffee shops, support what we’re doing and the specialty coffee community in New Orleans.