Espresso Italiano Champion 2018: Taiwanese professional wins the barista competition from the Italian Espresso National Institute

A 36-year old Taiwanese who has been in the coffee business for 18 years and is the owner of three coffee shops in Taipei: this is Chang Chung-Lun, the professional who won the Espresso Italiano Champion 2018 barista championship organised by the Italian Espresso National Institute (Inei), beating another thirteen baristas in the final phase of the competition hosted by the Mumac Academy between 26 and 28 November this year.
Now in its fifth year, the 2018 championship saw more than 350 baristas from eight countries compete with perfect espresso and cappuccino: Italy, Germany, Bulgaria, Japan, Korea, China, Taiwan and Thailand, in a total of 39 qualifying competitions. "In any case, you are all winners, for your commitment and your passion – this is how Simona Colombo, Marketing Director of Gruppo Cimbali, addressed the competitors – With you being here today, you are honouring Italian espresso".
The event was also an opportunity to present the research "The styles of Italian espresso" by the International Institute of Coffee Tasters (Iiac). This scientific survey was presented by Luigi Odello who explained that thousands of espresso blends, not only Italian ones, were analysed to identify five sensory families in the country. "Italian espresso is an expression of our national culture with local expressions", commented Odello.
The final phase of the Espresso Italiano Champion 2018 was held at the Mumac Academy in Binasco (Milan), the training centre set up in 2014 thanks to the commitment of Gruppo Cimbali to develop the culture of coffee from producer to consumer. In a short time, the Mumac Academy has become a flagship for international training, from plantations to sensory analysis, from the selection of green beans to roasting, from the preparation of espresso to latte art.
The winners of the previous editions of the Espresso Italiano Champion competition were the Italian Filippo Mezzaro (2014), the Greek Giannis Magkanas (2015), the Korean Park Dae Hoon (2016) and the Italian Fabio Dotti (2017).
The video is available at:

Espresso Italiano Champion 2017: international semi-finals and final at Host 2017

15 baristas from 8 countries competing at the international semi-finals of the Espresso Italiano Champion 2017: only 4 will make it to the international final and compete for the title. The international semi-finals of Espresso Italiano Champion 2017, the Italian Espresso National Institute’s barista competition, will take place at Host 2017 in Milan on Sunday 21 October, the international final on Sunday 22 October.

The path taken by the competitors to gain their place in the semi-final phase was very long. Over 40 contests were held in 8 different countries (Italy, Japan, China, Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Bulgaria and Germany) and more than 400 professionals took this challenge. Selection brought 15 competitors the semi-final which will be held on Sunday 21 Octobet at the following booths:

  • La Genovese, Pav.14, Stand H22, 11:00 AM
  • Dersut Caffè, Pav.14 Stand L39, 2:00 PM
  • Essse Caffè, Pav.18, Stand B50 C57, 2:00 PM
  • Mokador, Pav.18 Stand D50 E51, 2:30 PM
Only four of the competitors will make it to the international final which will take place at Wega’s booth (Pav. 24, Stand D52 D60) on Sunday 22 October at 3:00. Baristas will compete for the title on a Wega MyConcept EPU espresso machine and a Wega 6.4 Instant grinder.

Filippo Mezzaro crowned 2014 Espresso Italiano Champion

2014-10 Filippo-Mezzaro-vincitore-EIC2014

After months of anticipation, the 2014 Espresso Italiano Champion has been named. Held for the first time in London at Pall Mall’s Royal Automobile Club, Filippo Mezzaro beat 14 other baristas to win the prestigious title. All 15 competing baristas came from 14 Italian espresso companies and partner organisations from around the world.

Each barista had 11 minutes to produce 4 espressos and 4 cappuccinos, judged by a panel of technical and sensory judges. The technical judges graded the baristas on the production of their coffees; whilst the sensory judges let the coffee speak for itself.

Each barista was awarded a certificate by the Vicepresident of INEI (Espresso Italiano National Institute), Marco Paladini, and the Secretary General, Luigi Odello. For the best espresso, Cristian Tetro representing Costadoro, took the title and the best cappuccino went to Alessandro Corsi, Essse Caffè. The overall champion, creating the best espresso and cappuccino of the day with the perfect technique, was of course Filippo Mezzaro, representing Torrefazione Saturno.

Filippo’s family life has over 40 years history in the cafe industry: ‘For me, coffee is first of all a passion, but managed with the proper training, it is a much higher quality.’ Filippo has always participated in courses run by the INEI and IIAC (International Institute of Coffee Tasters) and has always believed in continuing his education alongside his hard work as a barista.

This debut event and Filippo’s win signify the beginning of a new trend in the UK coffee market – a trend that celebrates the skill of a traditional barista and the origins of Italian espresso.