Celeste Norris of Good 2 Go café on Melbourne’s Hosier Lane has been named Australia’s Barista of Choice on the inaugural National Barista Day.
Taking place 1 March, National Barista Day was created by www.BaristasforBaristas.com and Almond Breeze Barista Blend to recognise the people who are keeping Australia’s coffee scene thriving.
“To be crowned Australia’s first Barista of Choice is just incredible. Being a barista is more than a job for me as it enables me to use my passion to teach people valuable skills to improve their lives,” Celeste says.
National Barista Day received more than 2000 nominations recognising outstanding baristas from all over the country.
The following nomination was received for Celeste, which helped secure her win:
“Celeste is not only a brilliant coffee barista, making some of the best coffees in Melbourne, but she is an outstanding member of the community. Working with the vulnerable population of Melbourne, both young and old, to support them at all aspects of life. She also teaches them the important life skill of making a delicious coffee at the Good 2 Go café.”
As Australia’s Barista of Choice, Celeste has won $5000 to help push her career forward, and a one-on-one masterclass with current World Barista Champion AgnieszkaRojewska of Poland. Nine runner-ups received special commendations and will be awarded $1000 to supercharge their careers.
“Celebrating the people in Australia’s 10th fastest growing job was a natural fit for us and we’re so proud to be bringing together the coffee community like this,” says Michael McNulty, Almond Breeze Barista Blend Australia and New Zealand Country Manager.
“This process has really highlighted how pivotal the barista is to the community and people’s lives. Barista schools are important, but some of the stories about the amazing customer service and friendship our baristas provide can’t be taught. This demonstrates what an incredible coffee scene we have in Australia.
“Huge congratulations to Celeste from Good 2 Go, she is the deserving winner. The response to National Barista Day has been phenomenal and we can’t wait to do it all again next year.”
Other nominations for Celeste read:
“Celeste mentors young people through a 12 week program, teaching them the tricks of the trade within a café. This includes barista skills, customer service, social integration along with constant one on one attention and respect throughout the entire process. She is insanely patient, loving, fun and has made an extensive list of people that adore her through all the work she does at Good 2 Go. Celeste makes sure to remember people’s names, treats everyone with the most respect and is really an inspiration to the community here at Hosier Lane. I can’t think of anyone more deserving.”
“Celeste is an incredible worker who helps to train vulnerable young people whilst also managing an extremely successful café. Given some of the more complex and tricky customers that come from the Hosier Lane area, for Celeste to manage training young people with little to no working experience, handling complex customers and managing an entire cafe, all whilst being one of the most friendly and positive people I’ve met, that’s a pretty hard argument to beat.”