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Restaurant Associates launch Barista Championships


Premium hospitality company Restaurant Associates launched its first ever Barista Championships on 17th February, showcasing caffeine perfection from across the UK Coffee Community.

Phased at three levels - foundation, intermediate and expert - the championships invite baristas from across the business with different experience sets to enter from independent cafes to chains, including HEJ Coffee to Starbucks showcasing their skills in the 2022 contest.  

Set to take place annually moving forward, this year’s judging panel included:

  • James Wise - Coffee Master Champion 2017
  • Imogen Davis - Director of Native Restaurant
  • Mat Keech - Managing Director of Hej Coffee
  • Chris Stern - Managing Director of Stern Consultancy
  • Sonia Carvalho - Head of Coffee and Community - Restaurant Associates

The winners of three categories included: Joao Claudio from Hej winning the foundation level; Alexis Olmedo from Hej Kings Cross winning the intermediate level and Barista trainer Nicolas Menegon winning the expert level.

Sonia Carvalho, Head of Coffee and Community at Restaurant Associated says, “Community which activates positive change is at the heart of everything we do at Restaurant Associates, and we couldn’t be more excited to bring the coffee community together for this year’s Championships. We hope, through showcasing and sharing skills, our baristas are inspired to continue striving for excellence.”

Restaurant Associates Barista Championships