Exploring the Physics of Coffee at Trieste’s 2024 Science and Comma Festival

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by EH

In the heart of Trieste, where the aroma of espresso fills the air like an intoxicating muse, the Antico Caffè and Libreria San Marco is poised to host a captivating journey into the depths of a beloved beverage: coffee. As part of the 2024 Science and Comma Festival, the preview event, aptly titled “The Physics of Coffee,” promises to tantalize both the intellect and the taste buds.

Scheduled for Sunday, May 12th at 11 am, this immersive conference-laboratory invites attendees to delve into the scientific principles underpinning every stage of coffee preparation. From the delicate roasting process to the art of extraction, Eugenia Fenzi, director of the historic Antico Caffè, and Alberto Polojac, maestro of the Bloom Coffee School, will guide participants on a captivating journey through the physics behind one of the world’s most cherished beverages.

But the exploration doesn’t end there. On Sunday, May 19th, the festival continues its quest for experiential enlightenment with the panel discussion “How is Biodiversity Faring? A Dialogue with the Bees.” Against the backdrop of Caffè San Marco, Michele Bottazzo, a forestry expert specializing in agro-environment and biodiversity, and Eugenia Fenzi will unravel the intricacies of biodiversity and sustainable cultivation techniques. The dialogue will be followed by a delectable tasting session showcasing the local honey production of the Italian and Slovenian Karst, guided by sensory analysis expert Maria Luisa Zoratti.

As the festival unfolds, the stage is set for a series of theatrical performances and thought-provoking screenings. On Tuesday, May 21st, “Galileo (R)evolution – The Path of Science,” takes center stage at the Teatro Miela. Renowned scientific communicator Massimo Polidoro, alongside researchers Pier Paolo Di Fiore and Anna Chiara De Luca, will illuminate the challenges and triumphs of those dedicated to scientific inquiry. The evening culminates with the screening of “Galileo (R)evolution,” a docufilm exploring the enduring legacy of the iconic scientist.

But the festival’s offerings extend beyond the realms of science and theater. From workshops for young minds to screenings of acclaimed films, the program caters to diverse interests. “Radioactive,” a biopic chronicling the life of Marie Curie, and “To the End,” a documentary tracing the genesis of the Green New Deal, promise to captivate audiences with their tales of scientific discovery and societal change.

Science and Comma 2024 isn’t merely a festival; it’s a testament to the intersection of knowledge and culture. With its eclectic lineup of events and esteemed partners, including the SISSA Interdisciplinary Laboratory and the Casa del Cinema Association, the festival embodies the spirit of intellectual inquiry and creative expression.

As participants embark on this captivating journey, they’re reminded that in the pursuit of knowledge, every sip of coffee and every word spoken holds the potential to ignite curiosity and inspire change.

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Edward Hunt
Edward is a defence consultant working independently for various companies and governments. He has lived in Trieste since 2017 after moving with his family from London. Currently he also writes articles for various aerospace industry magazines, works with flight simulator game developers and corrects erroneous opinions in the FT comments sections like a Boss.


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