Barista & Roaster Profiles

Wednesday, August 15th, 2012

Gloria Jean’s Coffees crowns their 2012 Australian Barista Champion

Nathan Trebbin from Castletown, Queensland was announced Gloria Jean’s Coffees Australian Barista Champion for 2012. Nathan won the prestigious title amongst fierce competition, which showcased Gloria Jean’s Coffees’ most talented and creative baristas from around the country.

Eight Barista finalists presented four espressos, four lattes and four signature beverages to the panel of judges, who critiqued against World Barista Championship standards. Judges awarded points for each finalist’s professional performance and how the individual barista’s personality and flair were presented to the audience.


Sunday, June 5th, 2011

Congratulations Matt Perger

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After flawless performances in his first WBC Championships, Australian Barista Champion, Matt Perger won 3rd place in the World Barista Champs 2011, held in Bogota in June.

… Alejandro Mendez of El Salvador won the 2011 event, the first competitor from a South American country to take out the coveted crown of World Barista Champion.

The final placings were:

2nd Place – Pete Licata, USA

3rd Place – Matt Perger, Australia

4. Javier Garcia, Spain

5. Miki Suzuki, Japan

6. John Gordon, UK

Congratulations to Alejandro, the finalists and all the 2011 competitors.

Wednesday, July 14th, 2010

Australia declared the best coffee nation in the world!


by Emily Oak, Director, WBC and AIR Training & Development Manager

From June 23-25th at Olympia, in Kensington London, the world’s best baristas and coffee professionals gathered together under one roof to celebrate all facets of the specialty industry. Baristas from more than 50 countries represented their individual nations competing against each other in a bid to win the global title.
This year was fresh and even more interesting for two main reasons. Firstly, it was the first time a semi final round was introduced into the competition. This added a layer of complexity and difficulty for competitors and judges. Secondly, there were more than 15 second or third time champions competing. This mean the standard of performance was higher than it has ever been before. Australia’s reining Barista Champion Scottie Callaghan, (who was also World Latte Art Champion 2006 and Australian Barista Champion 2007) put in a solid performance, making it through both the preliminary and semi final rounds to the final of the championship, no easy task at all.
Scott came away with the third place trophy, making him the third best barista in the world. Combined with the efforts of the rest of ‘Team Australia’ competing in a whole range of competitions (Latte Art, Good Spirits and Cup Tasting) Scott’s placing helped secure the overall team trophy for Australia…. Well Done!

Wednesday, February 18th, 2009

Australian Barista Champs 2009

barista-champs-120and the winner is…  congratulations to Tim Adams from Queensland who won first place, taking home the Australian Barista crown for 2009. Tim will go on to represent Australia at the 2009 World Barista Championships, to be held in Atlanta, 16th to 19th April 2009. Congratulations also to Zoe Delaney and Con Haralambopolous, both from Victoria, who took home 2nd and 3rd place respectively.

To discuss this topic (or any other topics), visit The Forum for news, views and opinions.

Tuesday, September 23rd, 2008

Interview with Ken Davids

The First of our Series, Profiling the Outstanding Figures of the Coffee World

Coffee ‘cupping’ is the tasting of coffee to uncover the coffee’s unique profile. And in the rarified world of cupping, there are few who can rival Ken Davids for experience or expertise. Originally an academic and writer, Ken Davids has grown to be recognized as one of the coffee world’s pre-eminent figures. He has a consultancy business in the US and a number of highly regarded books on coffee to his credit. He is also a sought-after speaker at coffee conferences and seminars worldwide. (more…)

Monday, July 14th, 2008

So, what do Australia’s top baristas do when they are not competing for the Australian Barista Champs?

Medals- we found some of the ‘best of the best’ at the 2008 Danes Grand Barista Champs.

After a 2 year hiatus, the Danes Gourmet Coffee Institute (DGCI) Grand Barista Championship (GBC) returned on 21st June 2008.

With such notable judges as Hazel de los Reyes (2005 Australian Barista Champion and current NSW Barista Champ), together with Corinne Chilcott (2001 Australian Barista Champion) and Paul Geshos (owner and head Barista for Sydney café, ‘Mecca’ – voted Sydney’s best coffee by Crema Magazine for 2007) the focus was on the professional barista’s technical skill and passion. 20 of Australia’s best Baristas lined up to compete in presenting, within a 12 minute time frame, 4 espresso, 4 milk based coffees and 4 identical latte art designs. (more…)

Monday, July 14th, 2008

What is it that motivates a barista to rise to the top of their field?

GBC WinnersWe asked the 3 winning finalist from the recent Danes Grand Barista Championships to give us an insight into what drives them to be part of Australia’s growing band of elite baristas, and what keeps them there.

Here is what Habib Maarbani from NSW, Jesse Hyde from Victoria and David Seng, also from Victoria, had to say.

These professionals are only the ‘tip of the iceberg’ when it comes to passionate baristi in Australia and we intend to profile many more in the coming months (and years) as we showcase Australia’s passion for coffee and the dedicated people behind the machines. (more…)

Saturday, July 12th, 2008

Roaster – Ernest Igual

Ernest IgualPlenty of us dream of leaving the corporate world to run a café, but Ernest Igual has gone one step further.

Working as a management consultant for one of the ‘big four’ accounting firms, Ernest wanted to do ‘something that had more meaning than helping a bank make more millions’. He also wanted to work more ‘hands on’ and to be in a role where he had more direct contact with what he was producing – seeing the link between what ‘you produce and the person you made it for’ in his words.

After 10 years, he took the plunge in late 2002 and took over a franchised café concept in Burwood. It was hard work with long hours, but it was a great experience, and Ernest built the café into a successful operation. However, in late 2003, his son was born, and along with wanting to reduce his hours, Ernest had taken an increasing interest in specialty coffee, including spending a lot of time at Campos in Sydney’s inner-west Newtown.

As the association grew, Ernest was impressed with Campos’ commitment to coffee excellence and the pride they took in their product; the relationship developed and in April Will Young (owner of Campos) offered to train Ernest as their new roaster.

There were long days, as Will trained him on the different blends and roasting profiles, but eventually he had built up the skill and the confidence to take over. So how did you find making the change from management consultant to boutique coffee roaster? ‘It was a whole new world,’ says Ernest. ‘You need to understand the relationship between all the variables; understand the roast profiles for the different beans…  there were skills that I brought with me’ he says, ‘but with coffee roasting, you need to rely on your senses – sight, sound and smell – you need to learn how to put them all together to get the perfect end-product’.

Now, he wouldn’t dream of going back, even though the wages and conditions are nothing like what he was on. ‘It’s great to get the reward for really giving yourself fully to something and producing a product that you can be really proud of,’ says Ernest, ‘and working at Campos has been an inspiration’. ‘At first, the motivation was to be as good as these guys’, he says. ‘Now that I’m here, it’s great to be part of this environment’.

Having come a long way from the café at Burwood and even further from the ivory tower in the city, there’s every indication that there’s just no stopping Ernest!

Tuesday, July 8th, 2008

Australia brings home 1st and 2nd from the World Champs in Copenhagen

Congratulations to both Con Haralambopolous and David Makin (both from Victoria) for their outstanding performances at the 2008 World Latte Art and World Barista Championships, held in Copenhagen, Denmark 19th – 22nd June.

Con HaralambopolousIn an unprecedented result, Australia brought home the World Latte Art title for the third year running. Cool, calm and collected, Con Haralambopolous out-performed the other competitors from over 50 countries to bring home the crown ahead of Russia’s Kira Malchenko and Japan’s Akihiro Okada.Con Haralambopolous

We have always known that Australia is a leader in the world of coffee but now there can simply be no question with Scottie Callaghan and Jack Hanna (both contributors for Crema Magazine) having won in 2006 and 2007 respectively and now Con Haralambopolous completing the hat trick! (more…)

Monday, June 30th, 2008

Jack Hanna, World Latte Art Champion 2007


World Latte Art Champion, Jack Hanna, speaks to us and shows off his talent as well as sharing a few tips for creating latte art.

Young, focussed and confident; these are all words that could be used to describe Sydney’s Jack Hanna, World Latte Art Champion 2007. But there are two words that best sum him up – driven and talented. At only 21 years of age, Jack’s journey to World Champion has been swift and decisive. “When I really get into something, I want to be the best that I can be, otherwise I feel I am wasting my time”, explains Jack. (more…)