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PT's Coffee Company Barista Wins Second Midwest Regional Barista Competition and Qualifies for 2008 United States Barista Championship
ST. LOUIS, Missouri USA (Feb. 19, 2008) - For a record-tying second time PT's Coffee Company's Pete Licata outperformed the region's finest coffee servers to win the Specialty Coffee Association of America's (SCAA) 2008 Midwest Regional Barista Competition. He also won the competition in 2005. Local barista Alex McCracken of Kaldi's Coffee Roasting Company and Licata's co-worker, Robin Seitz finished second and third, respectively.
By winning the Midwest's hottest annual coffee event, Licata automatically qualifies for a spot in the semi-final round of the 2008 United States Barista Championship (USBC), which is held at SCAA's Annual Conference & Exhibition, May 2-5 in Minneapolis. His USBC travel and lodging accommodations will be covered by MWRBC host, Kaldi's Coffee Roasting Company.
Licata's signature drink, which he named Reflections, especially impressed the competition's seven judges. The winning coffee concoction was created from a unique blend of dark chocolate, creamed orange, cinnamon with an espresso base.
The MWRBC is one of 10 regional events the SCAA will host this year leading up to the USBC. The events encourage and recognize excellence and achievement in the art and skill of serving and preparing espresso. Event entrants prepared and served 12 coffee beverages, including four espressos, four cappuccinos and four original signature drinks of their own choosing within 15 minutes. The competitors were judged on taste, beverage presentation, technical skills, total impression and station cleanliness.
The competition featured 27 of the most accomplished baristas throughout Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota and South Dakota. The Third Degree Glass Factory, a public-access art education center in St. Louis was the site of the event.
About the SCAA
Celebrating 26 years of success, SCAA is the world's largest coffee trade association. SCAA members are located in more than 40 countries and represent every segment of the specialty coffee industry, from coffee growers to coffee roasters and retailers. The SCAA's mission is to be the recognized authority on specialty coffee, providing a common forum for the development and promotion of coffee excellence and sustainability. The SCAA's dedication to excellence in coffee is realized through the setting of quality standards for the industry; conducting research on coffee, equipment and perfection of craft; and providing education, training, resources and business services for members. The SCAA's annual conference is held in a different U.S. city each year and is the coffee industry's largest gathering and exhibition.