8 steps to becoming a barista champion

8 steps to becoming a barista champion


Safa Salehi, CEO of Iran Academy, authorized SCAE trainer and jury member of the Lebanese Barista Competition at HORECA Lebanon, highlights what it takes to being an award-winning barista.

Improve your knowledge:

“Before you start making coffee, you need to educate yourself to really understand what it takes to make the perfect cup of java. That includes extraction, brewing, sensory evaluation, green coffee, coffee roasting, “from farm to cup,” processing, difference between under and over-extracted coffee.”

Develop your skills:

“When you fully understand the science and art behind coffee making and brewing, get practicing. Start off with the basics, such as coffee grinding and frothing milk, then take it up a notch. Try your hand at coffee roasting and latte art. It’s important to pace yourself and master the basics before branching into specialty coffee.”

Find the right coffee:

“When making your beverage, one key element to success is finding the right coffee that works best for you. It’s crucial to be able to differentiate between the different grades of coffee (commercial, premium, specialty, etc.) and coffee quality.”

Explore your coffee potential:

“Never be afraid to try new things. A good barista is always looking for new ways to make coffee. It’s crucial to respect the identity of a perfectly brewed coffee, but it’s just as important to be creative.”

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Understand the rules and regulations:

“This goes beyond just those of HORECA or any other competition for that matter. As with all foods beverages, coffee has certain golden rules when it comes to taste and practice that must not be compromised, and breaking them could get you both disqualified as a competitor and discredited as a barista.”

Create the scenario:

“Every creation has a story behind it and coffee beverages are no exception. Thus, when introducing your drink, make sure you tell your story to captivate your audience.”

Attention to detail:

“This is pretty self-explanatory. When working with coffee you need to take every detail into consideration and the best way to do this is by creating a checklist.”

Practice, practice, practice:

“There’s a reason why they say “practice makes perfect.” If you want to become a successful barista, you can’t expect to get everything right from the get-go. It’s about trying time and time again and that requires a lot patience, dedication, and hard work.”




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