U.S. Latte Art Championship Introduced for 2014 SCAA Event in Seattle, WA!
Are you a latte artist? Do you want a 1 in 20 chance to win a trip to Melbourne, Australia to compete at the World Latte Art Championship?
Introducing the U.S. Latte Art Championship!
Taking place this April, the U.S. Latte Art Championship (USLAC) will be held for the first time at the U.S. Coffee Championships Arena in Seattle, Washington. This is the first time latte artists will be able to compete to represent the United States at the World Latte Art Championship.
The World Latte Art Championship (WLAC) brings together competitors from over 30 countries, showcasing latte art skills in a multiple state championship format. This year’s WLAC will be held in Melbourne, Australia at the Melbourne International Coffee Expo (MICE).
Here in the U.S., we’re inviting all latte artists to enter for their chance to win a trip to Melbourne to compete on the World stage. We’ve put together a guide to the USLAC, along with some frequently asked questions, to break down what makes the USLAC different from your usual latte art throwdown, and hopefully encourage you to enter!
The preliminary round takes place in two parts – the Art Bar and the Stage performance.
At the Art Bar, competitors have 10 minutes to create a single latte art design. This can be in any vessel the latte artist chooses (as long as it remains practical to serve!) and may employ techniques of free-pouring, etching, or surface decoration (chocolate powder, food coloring).
Examples of previous Art Bar designs:
During the Stage performance, competitors have 6 minutes to create 4 drinks. Two (2) Identical Free-Pour Lattes, and two (2) identical designer lattes. The competitor provides a photo for each set of lattes, and aims to match the design in the photo. Free-pour lattes are exactly that – a free-pour design. Designer lattes may incorporate etching or surface decoration.
Example of Stage Performances:
The top six combined scores from the preliminary round will go on to a final round. In the final round, competitors have 8 minutes to present 6 drinks – 2 free-pour lattes, 2 free-pour macchiatos, and 2 designer lattes. A great example of a final round performance can be found by viewing previous WLAC Champion videos:
More videos of the final and preliminary rounds in 2012 and 2013 may be found on World Coffee Events’ livestream website.
Sold on competing? Register for the US Latte Art Championship here!
Frequently Asked Questions
You’ve got the gist of the competition down, but there’s a few lingering questions you have. We’ve attempted to tackle some of them below:
Can I read the complete U.S. Latte Art Championship Rules and Regulations? What about the score sheets?
The 2014 U.S. Latte Art Championship Rules and Regulations, as well as the complete set of score sheets may be found on the U.S. Coffee Championship website, here.
Do I get to use my own cups for the competition?
For the Art Bar portion of the USLAC you may use your own cup or vessel of choice.
For the remaining Stage portion and during the Finals you must use the sponsored latte and macchiato cups. Cups are sponsored by Espresso Parts.
Latte cups will be provided to competitors for the competition, and all finalists will receive a set of macchiato cups.
If you would like to practice in the official latte cups prior to competition, we encourage you to purchase a set of your own directly from Espresso Parts!
What espresso machine will we be using to pull espresso and steam milk for the competition?
You’ll be using a 3-group DC pro espresso machine provided by USLAC sponsor Dalla Corte.
You’ll be using a Mahlkonig K30 grinder.
Competitors may not bring their own grinders to compete. They must use the provided grinder.
Can I bring milk or coffee of my choice?
No. Milk and coffee are provided for everyone via USLAC sponsors. This makes the USLAC one of the easiest competitions to compete in – show up with your milk pitchers and your skill and you could end up the U.S. Latte Art Champion!
I’m a latte artist, but I don’t etch / use chocolate or food coloring / etc. Can I still enter to compete?
Yes! While the USLAC Rules allow for etching or the use of surface decoration (chocolate powder, food coloring) during the Art Bar and with Designer Lattes if you choose, they do not require you to do/use these methods. The 2012 World Latte Art Champion, Viktoriya Kashirceva, free-poured all her drinks in the final round!
What’s the schedule for USLAC? Where is it being held?
The USLAC will take place in the USCC Arena at The SCAA Event in Seattle, Washington.
The preliminary round for USLAC will take place on Thursday, 24 April and Friday, 25 April.
The final round for the USLAC will take place on Saturday 26 April.
A specific schedule will be released closer to the competition dates.
I have a question that’s not answered here! How do I get it answered?
E-mail us at email@example.com -- all official USLAC questions should be directed here, whether related to rules, registration, or just curiosity.
I’m in! How do I register?