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Local Baristas Compete for Place in National Comp

2 June 2005
News Release

Local Baristas Compete for Place in National Competition

The coffee making talents of Auckland Wild Bean Cafe baristas will be put to the test next week as they compete for a spot in the finals of the Wild Bean Cafe Barista Awards. The Baristas who will compete in the Auckland regional knockout competition are:

BP Connect Bombay Steph Kershaw and Rati Rophia
BP Connect Counties Marie Jury and Jess Atchinson
BP Connect Fanshawe St Melissa Boltman
BP Connect Flatbush Cherune Howe and Regina Etuale
BP Connect Junction Tahira Mukrram and Avanai Jajal
BP Connect Mangere Daniel Pilli and Mohammed Ali
BP Connect Mercury Sowdhamini (Mini) Noogala
BP Connect Ngaruawahia Lois Tipa and Rangiwhaia Metei
BP Connect Papakura Kara Brown and Nick Panapa
BP Connect Tristram St Lee Haukedahl and Dianne Wilson
BP Connect Weymouth Maud Drader and Uman Nair
BP Connect Whitiora Chanel McMullen and Helen Finlay

Regional competitions are scheduled to take place across the country, where the top two baristas from each of Wild Bean Cafe’s 45 locations will test their skills against one another.

Following the completion of all regional competitions, 12 finalists from across the country will be selected to compete in the Wild Bean Cafe Barista Awards, scheduled for June 28 in Auckland at the Maritime Museum. The finalists will be announced later in June.

Site Manager of BP Connect Tristram, Bruce Robinson, explains the selection of the top two baristas to represent his site was a difficult one.

“All of our baristas receive great training, and that means there’s consistency in the quality of coffee prepared by all of our staff. But, a few of our baristas have that extra special touch, and those competing in this regional round are in that category. We know they’ll do us proud! “

Wild Bean Category Manager Chris Moltzer says the Wild Bean Barista Awards have been designed to showcase the commitment each Wild Bean Cafe has made to professional Barista training.

“A key focus for Wild Bean Cafe is to consistently deliver quality coffee to our customers, and this competition highlights the coffee-making skills and artistry of our Baristas,” he says.

“Our customers are confident they will get the same professionally made coffee from any of our 45 Wild Bean sites, however this competition allows for some healthy rivalry between our Baristas around the country.”

The 12 regional finalists will compete at the Wild Bean Cafe Barista Awards at the end of June, and four finalists will then be selected to compete in the 2005 Robert Harris National Barista Award regionals. Finalists from these rounds will compete in the 2005 Robert Harris National Barista Awards finals in Taupo on 23rd September.

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