Barista Magazine Publisher Kenneth R. Olson is in Minneapolis this weekend for the Big Central, which brings four—count ’em, four—competitions together under one roof. Thanks to the generous support of hosts Cafe Imports and Curtis, the event has attracted a great crowd and loads of excited, talented competitors.
The South Central Brewers Cup, the South Central Barista Competition, the North Central Brewers Cup, and the North Central Barista Competition are all taking place this weekend. You can watch the whole thing live RIGHT HERE.
This is the first competition to take place with the new, controversial format: there will be NO finals round for the barista competitions. That means baristas will perform one time and one time only, be judged by different judges, and then a winner will be announced on Sunday. We’ll see how it all shakes out.
Ken has been sending photos from the competition for us to share with you, so in case you’re not able to be there in person, here are some scenes from Minneapolis this weekend.