12 Partipants Vie For Barista Of The Year Award
Twelve participants will be vying for the Piazza Doro Fiji Barista of the Year award during the final today. The event has been hosted in conjunction with the Fiji Hotel and Tourism Association and Fiji Chefs Association during the HOTEC and Moffat Salon Culinaire at the Sheraton Fiji Resort, Denarau Island in Nadi. Laite Cavalevu, among the four judges for the event, said they are looking forward to a tough competition this year around.
“We had a total of 66 participated in the regional events in Nadi, Coral Coast and Suva,” she said. Ms Cavalevu said the first top three placed from each zone qualified plus three wild card entrants. “There will be two sensory and two technical judges for the one day event.” Also in the mix is New Zealand-based judge Nellie Strickland who was part of the event last year.
“This year I think the competition will be more competitive,” said Ms Strickland.
“I’m really happy with Fiji that the coffee has improved and everyone is getting excited and passionate about coffee.
“I think it’s really important because coffee is big around the world, so making coffee is actually increasing tourism and as well as money for Fiji.” Ms Stickland added from last year to this year, their coffee sell has actually increased a lot.
Ms Strickland has judged competitions in Australia and New Zealand. This is her second year judging in Fiji. She has been in the coffee industry, for the past eight years.
Ms Strickland is originally from a hospitality background for 19 years in different areas. “What inspired me with coffee is that I’m very passionate with training, so training is what I love to do,” she reiterated.
“I like to train people to make good coffee.”
This year I think the competition will be more competitive. I’m really happy with Fiji that the coffee has improved and everyone is getting excited and passionate about coffee. Nellie Strickland New Zealand-based judge
New Zealand-based judge Nellie Strickland and Laite Cavalevu during the HOTEC at Denarau Island yesterday. Photo: WAISEA NASOKIA