Ipswich City Council

Media Release

Short black cup world record smashed

28 May 2008

IPSWICH now holds a place in the Guinness Book of World Records*.

It is not a sporting feat or a world speed record. It is something far more demure that sits outside the office of Mayor Paul Pisasale.

It's a living collection of short-black coffee cup sets or demitazzas.

Mayor Paul Pisasale started collecting the cup sets in 1993 and all of them are available for a short black on short notice.

The international office of the Guinness Book of World RecordsTM confirmed the Mayor's collection of 650 sets of demitasse cups (1500 individual cups) is the biggest collection in the world.

"The previous world record was held by Michael Millerick in the USA who has 220 demitasse cup sets which are currently on display at the Java Jungle Cafe in Reno, Nevada.

"The official certificate says demitasse cups,  which is French, but with my Italian upbringing we have always called them demitazzas," C r Pisasale said.

"People have been very generous in donating to my collection once they discovered my passion for short-blacks.

"The cups they bring might have been ones they've had in the family for decades or something they picked up while travelling overseas. 

"More importantly I have been able to donate specially selected cups to local charities, framing them and making them available for auction," Cr Pisasale said.

 "I enjoy people taking an interest in the collection and love sharing it with as many people as possible and I frequently invite people from around the city, and the world, to visit and enjoy a coffee with me - all they have to do is pick a demitazza to enjoy it in."

Cr Pisasale said the cups represented many countries, cities and places from around the globe.

"I am extremely proud they have found a home in Ipswich.

"What better place for this wonderful collection which, in itself, represents the spirit of community through the many people who have added to it over the years."

Cr Pisasale offered a personal ‘thank you' to his mother, Maria Pisasale who gave him the first cup in the collection and friend, Michael Gambaro, both of whom attended a function in Ipswich to celebrate the listing.

"A big ‘thank-you' must go to each and every person who has made a contribution over the past 15 years, for this is not just my collection but one which I truly believe also belongs to the people that have helped build it,  and to many more who will enjoy it in the years to come," Cr Pisasale said.  

*Trade Mark