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Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Search on for Pinoy barista to compete in world championship

The Filipino barista who will win in the first Philippine National Barista Championship in February will represent the country in the World Barista Championship in May 23 to 26 this year in Melbourne, Australia.

The winner will get a P10,000 cash prize, a one-year coffee education scholarship worth
P30,000, and an all-expenses-paid round-trip airfare and accommodation to the coffee-
making competition in Australia, where he or she goes head to head with more than 50 other
national representatives.

The search for the country’s official representative will happen on February 1 and 2, 2013, at the Megatrade Conference Center in SM Megamall, Mandaluyong City, in an event organized by the Association of Filipino Baristas, Inc., and Espresso World.

Only one contestant per coffee house can participate during the preliminary round, with the top six advancing to the finals.

Now on its 12th year, the World Barista Championship is considered the most prestigious coffee-making competition in the world and has even been called the “Olympics of Coffee.”

Competing in three elimination rounds, contestants have to create 12 coffee beverages,
consisting of four espressos, four cappuccinos, and four signature drinks, within 15 minutes.

They earn points not only for the taste, visual presentation, and functionality of their drinks, but also for keeping their working areas clean and maintaining good hygiene.

Cynthia Ludviksen, managing director of World Coffee Events, which licenses the Philippine
National Barista Competition, said it’s good to see baristas get “much-deserved recognition at all corners of the world.”

In a press release, Ludviksen said, “The Philippine National Barista Championship will certainly elevate the role of Filipino baristas. It’s very encouraging to watch them share their expertise, passion, and knowledge of specialty coffee.”

Although the Philippines has not had an official representative to the World Barista
Championship in the last 12 years, numerous Filipino baristas have competed and won in
several international contests.

One of them is UAE-based Pinoy barista Gerald Delos Reyes, who emerged the Regional
Barista of the Year for the Middle East and North African region in October 2012.

A barista at the Dubai Airport Costa Coffee branch, Delos Reyes impressed judges with his
Mocha Flora— a lavender- and rose-infused mocha drink—and bested eight other rivals from Oman, Bahrain, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, Egypt, and Kuwait. - VVP, GMA News


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