London catering firm Vacherin has named Lukasz Pancewicz as its first Barista of the Year.
Pancewicz was the overall winner of the coffee making competition which was held at the Illy training centre in the Business Design Centre earlier this week.
The competition was split into three categories: ‘prefect espresso'; ‘perfect milk', where the five contestants had to master making a latte, cappuccino and macchiato, and ‘signature beverage' where they were each asked to come up with their own unique hot drink and ‘sell it' to the audience.
Marco Arrigo and Davide Rocchi of coffee company Illy mentored the contestants before judging their coffee making skills.
Arrigo said that consistency and passion for coffee is what made Pancewicz stand out from the crowd. "I always say that being a barista is not all about the coffee though - you must have a fantastic personality as well," he added.
Pancewicz' signature drink was a modern take on an Irish coffee which consisted of a mocha with milk, hazelnut syrup and a dash of Kahlua and Cognac, finished off with a swirl of foam on the top.
Prizes were also awarded to Vicky Mouland for the best espresso, Saba Woidermariam for best signature drink, Marina Podlesnaja for the best milk and Antonio Salvani for the most improvement during the competition.
By Janie Stamford
E-mail your comments to Janie Stamford here.
If you have something to say on this story or anything else join the debate at Table Talk - Caterer's new networking forum. Go to www.caterersearch.com/tabletalk
Looking for a new job? Find your next job here with Caterersearch.com jobs