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Reports From the Road
WBC Tokyo Japan Day 2
Author: CoffeeGeek Staff
Posted: July 31, 2007
Article rating: 8.3
feedback: (3) comments | read | write
 
James Hoffmann, United Kingdom Barista Champion
Posted by Jack Hanna, 8:55am Permalink to this blog entry

First up today is one of the crowd's big favourites, and also the star of the Harry Potter movies in the title role, James "the Hoff" Hoffmann! He'll be followed soon after by Australian competitor Scott Calaghan, and later on today Heather Perry will step up and represent the United States. Other highlights from today have to be the Japanese champion, and no doubt there'll be a huge crowd on to cheer for the home town favourite.

James' performance was indeed something very special. He was smooth, polished and very well spoken, dressed quite casually, but very much the consummate professional. During James' performance, I was particularly impressed that he was able to identify some less than perfect shot pulls for his cappuccinos, so without much worry or hesitation, he decided to redo the shots, and still finish quite within the time allotment.

One special aspect of James' performance that a few other competitors also did was the cappuccino pouring, done right in front of the judges. Hoffmann is such a natural at pouring latte art that he made it seem like this was they way cappuccinos should be poured and served.

One other early note - many new familiar faces were around today, as more and more of the industry's personalities arrived, and this helped create an even greater atmosphere of community and friendliness in the competition hall.

Here's some pictures of James' performance.

Click for larger image
Hoff warms up
James warming up in his practice round, as coach Steve Morrissey helps out.
Click for larger image
Settng the table
Hoffmann's preset table, featuring nice custom wood settings.
Click for larger image
Barista Tools
Not to be found in your average cafe, these are some of the tools used to make the signature drink.
Click for larger image
Working the grinders
In what may be a surprise for some, Hoffman used two Malkhonig grinders, each containing a single origin. A lot of baristas don't like these grinders because they can clump, but they work well for Jim. I hope he doesn't get docked for the automatic functions!
Click for larger image
As the judges write
James, looking every bit like Mr. Potter, serves the judges as they keep score.

Here's Zachary's video of James' first round performance.

.

Article rating: 8.3
Author: CoffeeGeek Staff
Posted: July 31, 2007
feedback: (3) comments | read | write
Reports From the Road Column Archives  
Column Description
One of the more popular pieces of content on the CoffeeGeek website are the reports from major trade shows. We cover shows like no other media source does - giving first hand intimate and frank reports that give you the real scoop on what's going on, from a consumer and a coffee lover's true perspective.

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