A dedicated team of coffee professionals, including Skip Finley of Dalla Corte North America, have been working around the clock for the past few months to develop the first step in the United States having an official entry into the World Latte Art Championship!
Really, with the amazing show American baristas have been putting on for years at the Coffee Fest Latte Art Competitions, it is long overdue for the United States to have a spot in the World Latte Art Championship—so thank you to Skip and the team!
Here’s how it’s going to work this year: It’s called the Latte Art Exhibition this year, since it’s essentially a test run. 64 baristas may register to compete in this fast-paced contest of latte art mastery.
Here’s the skinny from the SCAA’s website:
“This new exhibition in the Activities Hall represents a grass roots effort supported by Dalla Corte North America and the barista community to bring the excitement of latte art to life around the country. This event will feature some of the best barista talent in the U.S. demonstrating their artistic skills and is sure to be a thrilling addition to The Event. Latte art is an extremely effective technique for drawing customers’ attention and simultaneously preparing a beverage of high quality and takes hours of practice to perfect. Similar to World Latte Art, baristas will be judged based on visual attributes, creativity, identical patterns in the pairs, contrast in patterns, and overall performance. The Latte Art Exhibition highlights artistic expression in a platform that challenges the barista in an on-demand performance.
For the preliminary round of the exhibition, baristas will go head to head in a 64-person single elimination throwdown with the judges calling for one of three basic latte art designs. The top 32 will move on to the second round where they will be asked produce a single creative latte pattern during their 10 minute practice (they can pour as many lattes during that 10 minute period) then move to the main stage to create two identical free-pour lattes based on that design. The judges will score this round and the top 8 competitors qualify for the final round. In the finals the baristas will be asked to create two identical free-pour macchiatos, two identical free-pour cappuccinos and two identical free-pour lattes in a ten-minute routine. The top-scoring barista in the final round will be declared the winner. ”
Some killer prizes are up for the winner, too, including a Dalla Corte espresso machine and home barista set-up from Prima Coffee! The set-up includes a knock box, pitchers, shot glasses, and a tamp mat.
And Prima is hooking the top three finishers up with a tamper, as well!
The competition times are a little wonky, but since this comp will be happening in the Activity Hall—the same place where the USBC, the US Brewers Cup, the US Cup Tasters Comp, the BGA Cafe, and loads of other stuff will be going down—you’re sure to see it.
Thursday April 11, Friday April 12, Saturday April 13
Thursday: 11am – 12pm & 2pm – 3pm
Friday: 11am – 12pm & 3pm – 4pm
Saturday: 10am – 12pm Finals & Awards
Questions? Feel free to contact Patrick Burns at firstname.lastname@example.org
And you guys, registration is OPEN now so hop on over HERE to register right away! It costs $25 to enter, but every penny goes to a fund to provide relief to coffee producers suffering from coffee-leaf rust devastation in Central America.