Stu Guidry of HiVolt Coffee (pictured right) won the June TNT title on his home turf. He has been the reigning champion while TNT was on summer hiatus, and he also used all of that time to complete his interview questions. You’ll find Stu in the judging panel as #tntNola resumes on September 24.
Where are you from? How did you get into coffee?
Alexandria, Louisiana. A friend of mine got me a job at a cafe back home when I was 17. It was called “House of Java.” The original one closed but I think there might still be one open somewhere.
What do you love about coffee in Nola?
I think we’ve come a long way the past few years. I think we’ll always be the “chicory cafe au lait” city to some people, which is fine. But I guess my favorite thing is it’s finally reaching a point where almost any part of the city has a coffee shop nearby where you can get good espresso.
You’ve been a member of several bands and are well-known in the Nola music scene. Tell us about your music and if/how coffee supports or relates to you being a musician.
I’ve always juggled playing in rock bands and working in coffee shops. The beauty of working in a coffee shop is you (hopefully) get to listen to pretty much whatever you want, and if business is slow that gives you lots of time to browse the internet or whatever to find new shit. Its like working in a record store in terms of just how much time you get to spend listening to music.
Do you have a preferred espresso/milk ratio or cup type for latte art?
Cortados and macchiatos are my go-to’s. For pouring you can’t go wrong with a cappuccino, though I’m disappointed no one’s challenged me to pour some macc’s at a competition.
What do you think about the massive haul of TNT prizes? Used anything yet?
I think it’s great. I’ve mostly been using the French press and kettle I won. I’m having a lot of fun with it.
Are you infamous for anything?
I take mock-selfies of a friend of mine whose infamous for taking a lot of selfies. You can find them on Instagram via the hashtag #seanselfies.
Anything you wish I’d asked?
“Why are you sitting outside on your phone doing an interview? Your shift just started.”