WBC Barista Meet & Greet Hosted by Proud Mary

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I have to say, usually the Barista Meet & Greet parties that traditionally take place the day before the start of the World Barista Championship are a little, well, boring. The baristas are nervous about their pending performances, the spaces are often too small for the number of attendees, and so on. But Proud Mary started a new tradition for awesomeness with the WBC Barista Meet & Greet last night: it was so great! Amazing food, great drinks (including a coffee beer that Proud Mary crafted especially for the gathering), and the competitors who attended were in high spirits. I tell ya, there’s just something about Melbourne that makes people happy.

Here are some shots from the evening…

All of the Barista Champs were invited to sign this giant commemorative poster.

All of the Barista Champs were invited to sign this giant commemorative poster.

It was such a cool party!

It was such a cool party!

From left, Thomas and Tobias of Denmark, and Asli and Drago of Turkey/Russia. Tobias is the Danish Brewers Cup Champ, and Asli is the Turkish Brewers Cup Champ.

From left, Thomas and Tobias of Denmark, and Asli and Drago of Turkey/Russia. Tobias is the Danish Brewers Cup Champ, and Asli is the Turkish Brewers Cup Champ.

Norwegian Brewers Cup Champion Alex meets new friends.

Norwegian Brewers Cup Champion Alex meets new friends.

Team Indonesia meets the Melboune coffee locals.

Team Indonesia meets the Melboune coffee locals.

Cafe Imports' Noah (left) and Gabe (right) do what they do best: talk coffee and make friends.

Cafe Imports’ Noah (left) and Gabe (right) do what they do best: talk coffee and make friends.

The Proud Mary party was a great chance for folks to mingle and get to know each other

The Proud Mary party was a great chance for folks to mingle and get to know each other

Nolan (in plaid) is the owner of Proud Mary, and was our most gracious host last night.

Nolan (in plaid) is the owner of Proud Mary, and was our most gracious host last night.

Barista champs stepped behind the Proud Mary bar to experiment with Proud Mary's extensive brew bar and 6-group Synesso.

Barista champs stepped behind the Proud Mary bar to experiment with Proud Mary’s extensive brew bar and 6-group Synesso.

U.S. Brewers Cup Champ Erin McCarthy and his coach, Katie Carguilo, in their Team America vests.

U.S. Brewers Cup Champ Erin McCarthy and his coach, Katie Carguilo, in their Team America vests.

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Square Mile of the UK is representing here with John Gordon, returning UK Barista Champ. Interestingly, John is an Aussie, and his wife, Jess (pictured) is a kiwi!

Square Mile of the UK is representing here with John Gordon, returning UK Barista Champ. Interestingly, John is an Aussie, and his wife, Jess (pictured) is a kiwi!

Lovejoy (Barista Champion of South Africa) and Mirriam (Barista Champion of Zambia) swap tips.

Lovejoy (Barista Champion of South Africa) and Mirriam (Barista Champion of Zambia) swap tips.

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.