There’s an unusual scene in the large Chinese cities of Shanghai, Chongqing, Beijing, and Guangzhou. Rather than occupying stores selling Sinkiang Black Beer, green tea, or pearl milk tea, city goers are flooding coffee shops for a daily caffeine hit.
“Coffee drinking in China is a fashion, not a habit,” says Shirley Liu, Yunnan Volcafe General Manager. “Five years ago, you wouldn’t have seen any coffee shops in the city. Now they’re everywhere.”
Danny Wilson is in high spirits following his third-place win at the World Coffee in Good Spirits Championship (CIGS) in November. Following the results, the Ona roaster celebrated with a glass of champagne before attending the official competition after party with his team.
“It’s crazy to think I only [had] about four months’ preparation in total. To end up third with so much talent in the competition is super inspiring. It’s a testament to the quality of Australian specialty coffee,” Danny says.
The past year couldn’t have been more of a surprise to me. At the beginning of September 2017 I would have said I’m not interested in competing in coffee championships. Little over a year later, I placed 10th in the 2018 World Brewers Cup (WBrC).
The Brewers Cup is a platform that can mean something different to each competitor. For me, it was a way to challenge myself and grow personally by getting out of my comfort zone. Through doing it, I not only accomplished these goals but managed to push myself professionally and developed my coffee knowledge immensely in a short space of time.
Visiting Veneziano Coffee Richmond is a unique experience. Passing its roastery operations, cupping lab and a smaller interactive micro roastery, you are welcomed into its newly opened 80-seat dining space. But that’s not all Veneziano Coffee Roasters has to offer, with a state-of-the-art training studio upstairs.
Veneziano’s training school runs three sessions a day, covering everything from the barista basics to roasting and cupping.
Competitions are one of the most rewarding growth experiences available to a barista. They’re scary, fun, tough, and competitive, but highly worth trying to benchmark your skills and putting yourself in a challenging position.
The hardest part about starting your competition campaign is knowing where to start. Competing can be quite a daunting process: standing up in front of a panel of judges, displaying your skills to professionals and in some cases, presenting a speech with the countdown clock and flashing cameras in your peripheral. The key to starting your competition preparation, however, is to do just that – start.
It’s an awkward feeling when you haven’t been invited to the hottest ticket event of the year. Nobody likes missing out, and no-one likes being an after-thought invite. To avoid such disappointment, consider yourself personally invited to the biggest coffee dedicated event of the year – MICE, taking place from 7 to 9 February, 2019.
Are you excited? You should be. This is a once-a-year opportunity to celebrate the Australian coffee industry, your industry.