Wheaties is, famously, “The Breakfast of Champions”. For the literary-minded among us, “Breakfast of Champions” is also the title of a Kurt Vonnegut novel. But is that truly the only breakfast of champions? Coffee, for example, is a staple part of many breakfasts… for some workers on the go, it’s the only thing they put into their stomachs before lunch. Is there such thing as a coffee of champions?
There is if it’s being served by Andrea Allen or Elika Liftee. They are the current U.S. Coffee Champions in their respective categories of Barista Champion and Brewer’s Cup Champion. The difference, as if you didn’t already know, is that Brewer’s Cup coffees need to be produced on manual devices.
This isn’t a single-shot event (heyo!). There are qualifiers and finals before reaching the championship, and the competition is strong (I could continue the coffee puns, but I’ll be nice). Even the U.S. winners aren’t yet at the top; they get to compete with the best from other nations while they chase the world title.
Where can you find out if you’ve got what it takes to have your coffee-making skills declared the best in the nation? The US Coffee Championships, where they explain the requirements to participate… and take submissions for both competitors and judges. Events have been shut down for the last year for obvious reasons, but with the administration of vaccines they are expected to resume, along with other activities arranged in conjunction with the Specialty Coffee Association and with World Coffee Events.
For the moment, you’ll have to make do with recordings from previous years, like the last time it was in the United States, Boston 2019:
Ah, the perks of Youtube… Sorry, sorry.
Question of the night: When are you most likely to enjoy a hot beverage, whether coffee or not?