By Lara Gallagher, SCAA
Welcome to the 2016 U.S Coffee Championship season! This year in the USCC Arena, we’ll be holding the Final rounds of the United States Barista Championship and the United States Brewers Cup along with the newly re-named United States Roaster Championship.
Prior to arriving in Atlanta, Barista and Brewers Cup competitors had to qualify to compete at the United States Coffee Championship Qualifying Event held in Kansas City, MO in February. We saw 150 competitors compete during a weeklong event that enabled the top 36 competitors from both competitions to move on to the final rounds of the United States Championships.
The U.S. Brewers Cup Championship round one will begin on Thursday April 14th and the U.S. Barista Championship round one begins on Friday April 15th. The Final round for both competitions takes place on Sunday with both competitions running consecutively on the same stage!
The United States Roaster Championship will see 40 competition roasters submit their roasted compulsory round green coffee for a place in the semi-finals, taking place on Friday, April 15. The top 12 semi-finalists brewed coffee will be on display for attendees to take part in a blind tasting and vote for their favorite coffee. On Saturday, the top 6 finalists second submitted coffee will be available to blind taste and attendees may vote for their favorite for last time. On Sunday, the 6 finalists will be available to showcase their submissions, and the winner will be announced at the end of the day on Sunday during the United States Coffee Championship winners announcement on the U.S. Barista Championship stage. The roasted coffee that earns the top score, as determined by a panel of judges and attendee votes, will be named the winner of the 2016 Roaster Championship.
The USCC Arena will also host the Barista Guild of America Café, where attendees can sample coffees donated by some of the top roasters across the region and served by members of the Barista Guild of America.
Also, take some time to visit with our Roasters Guild and Barista Guild membership booths and sponsor tables in the Arena.
Lara Gallagher is the Senior Events Manager for the Specialty Coffee Association of America.