WBC Finalist #1: William Hernandez of El Salvador

For his signature drink, William incorporates a siphon, an AeroPress, lime juice, ground coffee, and again the wine glasses for aroma.

William hails from Viva Espresso in San Salvador, El Salvador, home to Alejandro Mendez, who won the World Barista Championship in 2011. So we expect big things from young William, and here in Melbourne at the WBC 2013, he has delivered.

William meticulously setting up his station in his 15 minutes of preparation time.

William meticulously setting up his station in his 15 minutes of preparation time.

All of Viva Espresso’s competitors are created in the image of Federico Bolanos, who owns Viva Espresso. Federico works with the barista champions around the clock all year long to make sure they’re equipped to play hard at the WBC. In fact, no one outside of Viva Espresso has ever won the national championship.

William actually has changed up a lot of his performance throughout the rounds in the WBC—a risky, but sometimes smart move.

William actually has changed up a lot of his performance throughout the rounds in the WBC—a risky, but sometimes smart move.

William’s performance is based on a processing method that was specifically created for his coffee, which comes from Finca Santa Petrona, the family farm of Lily Pacas, who is Federico’s wife.

For his signature drink, William incorporates a siphon, an AeroPress, lime juice, ground coffee, and again the wine glasses for aroma.

For his signature drink, William incorporates a siphon, an AeroPress, lime juice, ground coffee, and again the wine glasses for aroma.

His performance is also a lot about aroma. He uses upside down wine glasses to catch the aroma and condensation of his coffee. Then he asks his judges to right the glasses and take a whiff. William certainly has a commanding presence on the stage; he’s confident and charming—no surprise he made it this far.

Final time: 14:56

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.