(photo courtesy of tonx)
Just back from the finals of the Western Regional Barista Championship in Berkeley—really exciting, and what a mob scene! Sarah was the emcee (and of course she did a great job, and no, I’m not prejudiced in the least), and now she’s out celebrating with the winners, but I thought there should be a post here ASAP to bring everybody the news: Chris Baca of Ritual got a double crown! First he was named The Barista’s Barista, elected by ballots from all the baristas participating in the event–the barista who was most supportive, most helpful, most team player, etc– or as Sarah described it “like Miss Congeniality in the Miss America pageant.” Chris would probably prefer “Mr. Nice Guy”. Then, before he had even finished blushing about that, Sarah announced him the winner and new Champion of the Western Region! The crowd went wild—both times!
In what seems to be his typical style, Chris accepted the award by talking about how great all his competitors had been: Kyle Glanville (#2), Heather Perry (#3), Drew Cattlin (also from Ritual and named Most Promising Newcomer yesterday), Nick Griffith, and Ryan Wilbur. And they all were really good, but Chris was both the judges’ choice and the crowd favorite. Hugging and cheering just kept on and on.
I’m sure Sarah will be posting more about it before long, but I just wanted you all to get the news right away. You shoulda been there!
Steve Allen (Sarah’s Dad)