For the more than a decade, latte art has been growing steadily around the world. In one the specialty coffee industry’s most competitive contests, the Coffee Fest Latte Art Competition draws baristas from around the world.

This past October, I attended this year’s Coffee Fest Seattle where another intense competition of pouring the best latte art heated up.

seattle coffee latte competitionIn addition to writing about this year’s coffee event, I wanted to provide a deeper look into the competition. How do you qualify to be a barista who competes among the best? What are the judges aiming for?

I asked Anna Gutierrez, one of the three latte art judges in this year's competition all these questions. She offers some exclusive insights in the process of judging latte art and what it takes to be a great barista in general.

But the fun doesn't stop there. I have two quick interviews with Cole McBride, an experienced Seattle-based barista and coffee educator who also talks about the competition and how it benefits his continued work in the coffee industry. Finally, I have a brief interview with Cabell Tice, right after he won the latte art competition and asked him his advice for those baristas interested in competing.

Though they are all coming from different places in the industry, there is one similarity between my guests here on the Seattle Coffee Scene Podcast: they all share a deep passion for serving the best coffee products they can. And yet, it is always much more than the coffee – along with the coffee they serve up a sense of community and engagement that always benefits the customer who can appreciate it.

I think you’ll find these three interviews interesting as they provide a unique perspective on this ever-growing part of specialty coffee. What also makes this set of interviews valuable is that each offers a different perspective on the latte art competition on how and why baristas can be better competitors and professionals.

Coffee Fest offers multiple shows throughout the year. Check with Coffee Fest for more information.

seattle coffee latte art competition
Two competitors at Coffee Fest Seattle pouring against each other. The winner takes home $2000 and bragging rights.


seattle coffee latte art competition
The three Latte Art judges reviewing the coffee pours at this year's competition. Anna Gutierrez is on the right.


Type of Competition:
It's a “March Madness” style latte art pouring competition with head-to-head elimination brackets. This year the winner took home a $2,000 purse, second place $1,000, and third place took home $500.

Our Interviewees:

Anna Gutierrez
Coffee Fest Seattle – Judge

To reach Anna:
Twitter: @AnnaGutierrez80
Facebook: Anna Ludwig Gutierrez
Instagram: AnnaGutierrez80

Cole McBride
Coffee Educator at Visions Espresso

Cabell Tice

Winner – 2013 Latte Art Competition,wCoffee Fest – Seattle Twitter: @Cabelltice


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seattle coffee podcast

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