It's the National Barista Competition, Cup Tasters and Latte Art in September at The Good Food and Wine Show. The stakes are high. A trip to Italy to compete on the World Stage next year. That's just for one barista. What is the value for everyone else? We'll tell you why they're worth the effort and your attention.
1. The comraderie.
When else do baristas and cafe owners have a chance to get together? Running a coffee shop is hard work and it's difficult to put your head above water let alone see what other baristas are doing. This is a chance to share and to learn and to meet new people who share your passion. The experience is invaluable and you will leave, as a competitor or a spectator, wanting to make better coffee.
David Coleman of Ours and Stephan Brits of the W Cafes hug it out after David is awarded the Western Cape title.
2. The Passion.
This is a labour of love and it is emotional to watch. The time put into these performances is incredible and when that hard work pays off, it shows. The SCASA team is determinded to get an SA barista to the highest level of competitive coffee. Lovejoy went to Melbourne and did us proud, whoever wins this year will have the full support of some of the most amazing coffee talent our country has to offer.
Tears of joy, Craig Charity after being announced KZN Champion.
Lovejoy Chirambasukwa, the current SA Barista Champion at Origin Coffee Roasting.
3. The Industry Collaboration.
They bring the best in the business together. The best equipment from competing companies, the biggest corporates to the smallest artisans, the green bean suppliers and the Why do they do it? They love coffee and they know that these competitions will raise the profile of coffee nationwide. SCASA is bringing in an international judge to check that we are up to scratch.
Jake Easton of Tribe Coffee and David Donde of Truth Coffee go head to head in the Cup Taster's Competition.
4. The coffees
. These baristas are using some of the best coffees in the world. They may not be readily available to the public right now, but it has to start somewhere. The competitions open our eyes to delicious coffees that we had never even heard of and for that we are very grateful.
The quality of the green beans is getting higher every year.
5. The Improvement
. Every year the quality gets better and better. The improvement is tangible. You can see it in your cup of coffee. Competition is good for any industry, this one is no different. It's pushing coffee to do more and be better.
Get involved. We'll be Livestreaming
the event from Joburg. If you're in town you should come check it out.