Coffee Fest Tokyo Latte Art Championship to Attract Heavy Hitters

Latte Art Tokyoj

It makes perfect sense, of course, that Coffee Fest’s famously popular Latte Art Championship would sail over to Tokyo eventually, especially considering that more and more competitors to the U.S. Coffee Fest Latte Art events hail from the Japanese capital. And who can forget the moment so many of us held our collective breath for, when Hiroshi Sawada of Tokyo’s Streamer Coffee won top honors at Coffee Fest Seattle in 2008, after he’d traveled to try for the title year after year after year.

Hiroshi Sawada, owner of Streamer Coffee in Tokyo and one of Japan's most influential baristas, appeared on the cover of Barista Magazine's Feb+March 2011 issue. Now Tokyo has tens of thousands of talented baristas, many of whom will no doubt participate in the Coffee Fest Tokyo Latte Art Championship April 2–4.

Hiroshi Sawada, owner of Streamer Coffee in Tokyo and one of Japan’s most influential baristas, appeared on the cover of Barista Magazine’s Feb+March 2011 issue. Now Tokyo has tens of thousands of talented baristas, many of whom will no doubt participate in the Coffee Fest Tokyo Latte Art Championship, with FBC International and FABEX, April 2–4.

We celebrated Tokyo’s great coffee culture by featuring Hiroshi on the cover of our February+March 2011 issue, but believe me—that culture is probably five times as strong now, at the beginning of 2014, than it was just three years ago.

I shot this photo in Tokyo at the 2012 Barista Nation event. I was so impressed with how talented and enthusiastic the Japanese baristas were.

I shot this photo in Tokyo at the 2012 Barista Nation event. I was so impressed with how talented and enthusiastic the Japanese baristas were.

Now Coffee Fest with FBC International and FABEX will be hosting the Coffee Fest World Latte Art Championship Open from April 2 through 4 in Tokyo, Japan. We’re thrilled to announce that Barista Magazine’s publisher Kenneth Olson will fly to Tokyo to judge the competition alongside Coffee Fest director David Heilbrunn. And it wouldn’t be a Coffee Fest Latte Art Championship without Heather Perry emceeing, right? So Ms. Perry will be there in Tokyo, too. You can look for plenty of coverage right here on Barista Mag’s blog throughout the event, as well as a gazillion fun Instagram photos and Tweets, I’m sure.

This photo was taken by Aida Batlle when she visited the Japanese Barista Championship in Tokyo last fall. She said it was super intense!

This photo was taken by Aida Batlle when she visited the Japanese Barista Championship in Tokyo last fall. She said it was super intense!

“Sixty-four competitors will meet at Tokyo Big Site at FABEX, the World Food and Beverage Great Expo, to compete for the title of World Latte Art Champion at the first Coffee Fest event in Asia since 2008,” states the press release. “Competitors will be judged on five categories: aesthetic beauty, definition, color infusion, degree of difficulty and creativity, and speed.”

“Having seen the international competitor participation soar to nearly half the field over the past years, we are confident that this 64 competitor field in Japan may be the deepest of any World Latte Art Championship Open to date,” Heilbrunn said.

About the Author

Sarah

Sarah Allen is co-founder and editor of Barista Magazine, the international trade magazine for coffee professionals. A passionate advocate for baristas, quality, and the coffee community, Sarah has traveled widely to research stories, interact with readers, and present on a variety of topics affecting specialty coffee. She also loves animals, swimming, ice cream, and living in Portland, Oregon.