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The Barista League’s Thriller Espresso Trip

The Barista League’s Thriller Espresso Trip in Colombia is over, and we’ve bought the news on all of the enjoyable!


Pictures courtesy of Vasileia Fanarioti and Juan Henao

Over the past week of February, the 2022 Barista League champions gathered in Colombia for this 12 months’s Thriller Espresso Trip. It was an action-packed journey full of studying, competitions, and naturally, a lot of enjoyable!

The Barista League workforce organized the journey with the assistance of Café Tío Conejo,  a specialty-coffee producer in Manizales. Help additionally got here from BWT, Crypto Baristas, and Want a Barista. I joined the group on behalf of Barista Journal to doc their journey. It was an unforgettable expertise!

A huge group of coffee people gathered under a round wooden meeting hall structure with exposed beams and a walking terrace built on the second story.
The Barista League champions joined native baristas in enjoyable competitions on the Recinto del Pensamiento nature reserve.

Connecting Espresso Cultures in Colombia

The journey kicked off in Manizales. Right here, the champions have been welcomed by espresso producers at Recinto del Pensamiento, a nature reserve positioned within the area. After lunch, there was a enjoyable competitors the place native baristas joined forces with the worldwide champions and shared their love for espresso. The night ended with a lot of dancing!

The next day began by tasting a few of Colombia’s awarded coffees throughout a cupping session at Recinto del Pensamiento. Then it was time to observe some nationwide espresso competitions, whereas the champions had the prospect to brew espresso they introduced from their respective international locations.

On the third day, we headed to the Café Tío Conejo farm in Manizales. In addition to studying about harvesting and processing, we bought to style espresso cherries and watch the espresso hulling course of. The Café Tío Conejo workforce had ready one other espresso cupping for us, the place we bought to strive a few of their scrumptious processed coffees.

A young woman in braids sifts through coffee beans that are being processed on a large wooden drying tray under a wooden canopy.
Throughout our go to to Tío Conejo, we visited the farm’s drying station and realized about pure, washed, and honey processing.

On the final day of this journey, the group headed to Bogotá to compete within the La Rumba Barista. It was the primary Barista League competitors ever held in Colombia, and it was really particular! Among the champions paired up with native baristas to compete for a night full of sensory challenges, espresso brewing competitions, and occasional cocktail crafting.

In the long run, Lorena Villanueva and Carolina Pinilla, who paired up with Ivette Veraloor from Spain’s Nomad Espresso, gained first place, incomes them a spot at subsequent 12 months’s Thriller Espresso Trip!

A Journey to Keep in mind

The journey additionally featured a number of the most unimaginable actions and plenty of items. From a espresso tasting at Bogota’s airport to DJ appearances in Recinto del Pensamiento and La Rumba, everybody had a good time. We spent a night at Resort Termales El Otoño, the place champions may chill out in thermal swimming pools. There was additionally a silent disco expertise within the Café Tío Conejo farm the place we watched the sundown collectively, sharing music and dancing.

Four people wear blue light-up over-ear headphones for the silent disco, all smiling and lit up with green polka dot lights at the Barista League Mystery Vacation.
Champions and native baristas gathered collectively at Café Tío Conejo for a silent disco social gathering!

To prime it off, our final night time out was full of Latin and Caribbean music and plenty of dancing in one in all Bogotá’s finest golf equipment—a good way to finish this unforgettable journey!

My favourite a part of the journey? I bought to attach with so many individuals from totally different backgrounds with one widespread ardour: espresso! This journey confirmed us how espresso can convey folks from totally different international locations collectively and can be utilized as a bridge for cultural alternate.

A giant thanks goes to The Barista League and the Café Tío Conejo workforce for placing collectively this superb journey, ensuring everybody felt secure, and creating an unimaginable expertise. I’m already trying ahead to the 2023 Barista League competitions, and I can’t wait to see what the following Thriller Espresso Trip might be like!


Vasileia Fanarioti (she/her) is a senior on-line correspondent for Barista Journal, and a contract copywriter and editor with a main focus on the espresso area of interest. She has additionally been a volunteer copywriter for the I’M NOT A BARISTA NPO, offering content material to assist educate folks about baristas and their work. You possibly can observe her adventures at thewanderingbean.internet.


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