[Photos: Liz Clayton]

Though it may already feel like your lifestyle, coffee is far more than just a drink—it's a potential social activity! We've rounded up some great coffee events coming up this month in New York City, where you're sure to learn as much as you taste. Or, well, just taste. No one will judge.

Honduras Cup of Excellence Tasting and Talking: Tuesday, July 19

Coffees from this year's Cup of Excellence contest in Honduras will be unveiled and discussed by Byron Holcomb of Dallis Bros. Coffee, who attended the competition earlier this year. Besides a guided cupping, Holcomb will tell stories from his visit to the coffee's origin farms, as well as answer questions about all things coffee and Cup of Excellence. Many of these coffees won't make it to New York cups at any other time, so check them out at Root Hill along with their backstory.

Root Hill Cafe
262 4th Avenue, Brooklyn, NY 11215; 718-797-0100
Tuesday, July 19, 6-8pm. Free.

Thursday Night Throwdown: Thursday, July 21

Join baristas and coffee-positive pals at cozy Dora for a coffee geek's idea of a great time at this month's installation of the Thursday Night Throwdown, a latte art competition masquerading as a party -- or is it the other way around? Judges Dan Streetman of Irving Farm Coffee and Erin McCarthy of Gimme! Coffee will adjudicate the rosettas, hearts and triple-tulips of New York City's most esteemed pourers. It's $5 if you want to enter the head-to-head tourney yourself, but free to watch and drink beer.

221 East Broadway, New York, NY 10002; 212-876-8065
Thursday, July 21, 8-11pm. $5 to buy in, free to attend.

Yes Equal! Manual Brew Down: Thursday, July 28

As fun as latte art is to watch, coffee competitions have, thankfully, escalated past that superficial layer of expertly textured microfoamed milk and into the essence of taste. In the service, then, of brewing great tasting coffee as well as great looking coffee, RBC NYC plays host to a manual brewing competition Here the best tasting cup wins -- using the coffee of one's choice and the method of one's choice, be it V60, syphon pot, Chemex, brewing through your sock -- you name it! Hosted by RBC NYC and reputed coffee tabloid sprudge.com, the proceeds from this event will benefit the Equality Texas Foundation. Judges are even flying in from as far as the coast -- the third coast of Grand Rapids, Michigan, that is. Tasting of coffee, giving of prizes and drinking of beer are all part of the fun.

71 Worth Street, New York, NY 10013; 212-226-1111
Thursday, July 28, 7:15pm. Free.

Under (Manual) Pressure: La Marzocco and Counter Culture Espresso Machine Tour


Sure, rock bands go on tour, and even monster trucks. But espresso machines? Yes, if they're state-of-the-art manually customizable pieces of Italian craftsmanship by La Marzocco. Counter Culture Coffee hosts this evening of espresso mayhem, where attendees will see a demo of La Marzocco's Strada EP -- a $20,000 machine created with full barista control at the forefront, using medical technology! No kidding. After learning about the Strada, there will be a two-hour playtime for folks to lay their hands on one of the most advanced brewers in the world. (Just don't cloud the stainless steel with your excited breathing.)

Counter Culture Coffee New York Training Lab
37 W 26th St. #400, New York, NY, 10001
Friday, July 29, 6-9pm. Free.

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