Baristas battle for coffee supremacy

Australia and New Zealand’s top baristas will battle it out in Melbourne this weekend, with the winner crowned MILKLAB’s Barista Battle Champion of 2024 and revelling in a $5,000 cash prize.

Eight finalists will compete in three rounds using MILKLAB Almond and Oat. Judges will be looking for the finest latte art pour that showcases harmony, contrast, difficulty, visual foam quality and overall appeal.

The competition will take place on 12 May at the Melbourne International Coffee Expo (MICE), a dynamic coffee-centric event of which MILKLAB is the Platinum sponsor for the 7th consecutive year.

Natalie Latimore, MILKLAB Marketing Manager says that the success of MILKLAB’s range can be attributed to an ongoing commitment to collaborate with Australia’s baristas and roasters.

“Events like MICE provide us with opportunities to connect with the people on the ground who are immersed in Australia’s coffee culture and attraction to hot or iced coffee beverages,” she said.

“It’s also about providing opportunities for roasters and baristas to take the spotlight and be recognised for their dedication to producing amazing coffee experiences that can be considered works of art.”

The two ‘do-or-die’ competitions for baristas and coffee roasters at MICE will be:

  • Roaster Royale – a new competition for Australia’s coffee roaster community to develop a one-of-a-kind espresso roast that pairs best with MILKLAB Oat milk. The winner will be announced at MICE 2024 and will receive $10,000 in prize money, a trip to Papua New Guinea plus a generous 12-month MILKLAB Roaster partnership.
  • MILKLAB Barista Battle – the popular competition has attracted baristas from across Australia and NZ to share a video of their finest latte art pour – using MILKLAB. The competition will culminate in Melbourne where finalists from each region will showcase their latte art skills at MILKLAB Lane. The winning barista will receive $5,000 and the opportunity to become a MILKLAB Master Barista.

At the Expo this year, MILKLAB Lane will exude Melbourne’s iconic trendy coffee culture vibe. Reminiscent of the streets of Melbourne, MILKLAB Lane ‘hole-in-the-wall’ style cafes and funky coffee carts encourage guests to enjoy a unique coffee experience, paired with the smooth tastes of MILKLAB’s plant-based and dairy milk range.

The Laneway will feature live DJ tunes, daily workshops on coffee art techniques by latte art experts Victor Vu, Ming Wan and Junnie, a Battle the Master challenge for skilful baristas, and networking events.

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