These dates have just been announced on the UK barista championship Website
Regional Heats 2008
The seven regional competitions will be:
London 7th November 2007 (Venue TBC)
South West 14th November 2007 (Venue TBC)
Midlands 21st November 2007 (Venue TBC)
North 9th January 2008 (Venue TBC)
Bristol 16th January 2008 (Venue TBC)
Scotland 23rd January 2008 (Venue TBC)
Northern Ireland 30th January 2008 (Venue TBC)
Finals will take place at the Hotelympia Show on the 19th – 21st February 2008.Quite an interesting twist this year in that for the first time the top 24 highest scoring baristas out of the heats will be invited to compete in two days of semi finals before the final six compete for the title on the final day.
This means that there will be a little less pressure on the regional heats giving competitors the chance to fine tune their performances before the finals. It should make for an exiting couple of days down at Hotelympia and should ensure there is a vast array of barista talent to pick things up from. I love the idea of so many baristi from the UK being in the same place at the same time, chatting and exchanging ideas.
I’m still a unsure as to which regional I should attend because I’m almost bang in the middle of the two nearest events, Scotland (rumored to be Glasgow) and North (possibly Sheffield). If I’m not bothered about being the ‘Scottish barista Champion’ I should pop up north as Mr Hoffmann has recommended that it may be a slightly easier heat. It may come down to the ‘Polar Challenge’ training dates and where they fall which will decide where I go in the end.
I’m starting to put together a training regime to try and mash all the shambles of drink ideas, coffee options and possible themes into something which the judges will like and hopefully score well. Also, I need to practice getting all the technical elements into a routine that I won’t forget and will hopefully become second nature to me. I have been seriously considering taking some training from ‘higher Sources’ but there may need to be some fairly large monetary decisions to be made there.