This press release today (edited slightly for clarity) from the SCAA reminded me that it’s less than 2 weeks until I leave for Bogota. Excitement, anxiety and panic have now officially set in:

The 12th Annual World Barista Championship will be held in Bogotá, Colombia, in conjunction with the ExpoEspeciales annual conference and exhibition hosted by the Colombian Coffee Growers Federation, June 2-5, 2011.

The World Barista Championship (WBC) is organized by World Coffee Events, which was founded by the Speciality Coffee Association of Europe (SCAE) and the Specialty Coffee Association of America (SCAA). The WBC brings competitors together from over fifty (56) nations who will each prepare 4 espressos, 4 cappuccinos, and 4 original signature drinks to exacting standards in a 15-minute performance set to music as they compete for the world title. A panel of forty-two (42) Certified World Barista Championship Judges from around the world rate the performances.

The World Barista Championship is the culmination of yearlong activity among nearly sixty (60) officially licensed partner countries and is designed to highlight extraordinary professionalism in coffee, foster learning and business relationships among the coffee community, and help introduce coffee drinkers to exceptional product and preparation. Managing Director of World Coffee Events, Cynthia Chang, explains, “This event is so much more than a competition, it represents the passion of an industry dedicated to great coffee, a sustainable supply chain, and the desire to continually delight customers.”

This year the competition takes place in the largest space ever, and in addition to the competition, guests will experience and World Barista Championship espresso bar and brew bars featuring Cup of Excellence coffees from Colombian farms. The event may also be viewed via video stream, accessible through the World Barista Championship web site. Sponsors include: Colombian Coffee Growers Federation, Nestlé Nespresso SA, Nuova Simonelli, MAHLKÖNIG, Urnex Brands Inc., and Everpure.

The World Barista Championship schedule and links to information on the full event programme may be accessed at