Baris­tas com­pete

South Waikato News - - NEWS - By PET­RICE TARRANT

The bat­tle of McDon­alds’ best cof­fee mak­ers in the cen­tral North Is­land was held in Toko­roa on Oc­to­ber 23.

Rep­re­sen­ta­tives from seven dif­fer­ent ar­eas in­clud­ing Napier, Hast­ings, Taupo / Toko­roa, Te Puke, Gis­bourne, Tau­ranga, Ro­torua and Whanganui con­verged on the pop­u­lar Swan­son St fast food fran­chise to find the best barista.

Each con­tender had to make six cof­fees in 20 min­utes while be­ing judged by John Kim and Jamey Stephens on ev­ery as­pect from prepa­ra­tion and tech­nique to clean up.

This is the first time Toko­roa has hosted the re­gional com­pe­ti­tion and fran­chise owner Eileen Byrne said it was an hon­our.

She said Toko­roa’s top barista Zia Reweti missed out on rep­re­sent­ing this re­gion by one point.

The day was filled with stiff com­pe­ti­tion but it was Justin Baek from Ro­torua who came first.

Justin be­gan his ca­reer as a barista at McDon­alds 21⁄ years ago and was ranked 15th at

2 the New Zealand Barista Com­pe­ti­tion last year.

Pho­tos: PET­RICE TARRANT

Judg­ing cof­fee: Com­peti­tor Justin Baek, cen­tre, is pre­par­ing to make some ex­quis­ite cof­fee while judges Jamey Stephens, back, and John Kim watch.

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