Cafe Society

Coffee Klatch for a Cause

There are lots of reasons for attending the “Live to the Fullest Cup” event at Fluid Coffee Bar, 501 East 19th Avenue, this Friday at 7 p.m., which will raise money for 26-year-old Semeon Abay, head roaster for the Denver-based Novo Coffee, who was recently diagnosed with advanced metastatic prostate cancer and given one to two years to live.

One reason would be Novo’s coffee. If you’ve ever tasted it, either at one of the restaurants or coffee shops around town that carry it or at Novo’s own cafes, you know Semeon, who grew up in the coffee Mecca of Ethiopia, roasts a mean cuppa. This coffee wunderkind has wowed some of the most jaded java tasters around, garnering some of the top scores ever on Coffee Review, the main mag for caffeine fiends. So if you’ve ever appreciated the exquisite beans that Semeon’s toiled over, now’s the perfect time to give back.

Another reason would be Semeon himself. His short life has been filled with one adventure after another, from teen idol status in his native Ethiopia (where he was featured on a popular TV show), to an unexpected relocation to the States thanks to his chance win in the U.S. Diversity Visa Program, to settling in Denver and finding a new family among the folks at Novo. With a background like that, it’s not surprising he displays wisdom and grace beyond his years, as anyone who knows him will testify. So an event like this will ensure a stellar guy has a lot more adventures to come.

Finally, even if you’ve never met Semeon or tried his coffees, “Live to the Fullest Cup,” be well worth your time. After all, some of the region’s top baristas will be squaring off in a latte art competition, pitting their best foamy creations against one another in an espresso showdown of epic proportions. Better yet, you can even place bets on your favorite java jockey or buy tickets for a coffee raffle, with proceeds going to Semeon.

Just be warned: With all the caffeine and good vibes involved, things are sure to get feisty. Donations will be requested at the door; for more information, call 720-519-4681 or e-mail [email protected]. – Joel Warner