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CH&CO crowns Barista of the Year 2021

24th Nov 2021 - 06:00
Contract caterer CH&CO has named Julia Mello, head barista at University College London, as its Barista of the Year 2021.

The competition celebrates coffee and the skilled baristas across the hospitality industry. It also gives teams the opportunity to develop their craft, share ideas and continue to experiment.

In front of judges, eight finalists competed in two challenges- Blind Brewing and Latte Art Battle to discover this year’s winner. The judges included 2018 World Barista Champion Agnieszka Rojewska, Ashley Dawes from Union Hand Roasted, Dan Harvey from La Marzocco and Ivan Fumigalli from The Roasting Party.

For the Blind Brewing the finalists were presented with four different mystery coffees to inspect before selecting their preferred bean and creating their own recipes. The Latte Art Battle saw the finalists go head-to-head to recreate latte art dictated by the roll of the dice.

Allister Richards, chief operating officer at CH&CO, said: “The eight finalists were amazing and brought the art of coffee to life. The epitome of professionalism and creativity, each and every one of them showed composure, talent and compassion as they supported each other, engaged with the judges and spectators and generally wowed us all.

“Julia will now tour the country, visiting our regional coffee partners throughout the UK and Ireland and inspiring her barista colleagues across the business as we continue to develop our teams and grow our coffee specialism and offer for clients and customers to enjoy.”

The runners up were Charlie Needler, barista working at Yorkshire Building Society and Dorija Glasovac, head barista at Overends Kitchen at the Airfield Estate, Dublin.

Written by
Edward Waddell