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Latte Art World Championship Open

Latte Art World Championship Open



Welcome to the Coffee Fest Latte Art World Championship Open. This exciting 64 competitor, bracket-style,
sudden-death format features head-to-head competition as "a match" between the competitors. 



The competitor receiving the highest score from the three judges advances to the next round and the loser is eliminated. Competitors produce one free-pour drink for the judges (no etching, tool, powders, etc. - just milk and espresso), which is then scored against the competitor at the facing machine.


For those applying to compete, a $40 entry fee is required for competitors. You will need to provide five latte art examples with at least three being varying designs. Allowed file types are jpeg, png, and pdf. The maximum file size is 5MB and 1600 pixels by 1600 pixels per image. Please no duplicates, pictures need to be well lit, and we do not accept any etching. 

COFFEE FEST PNW Competitors:


Coffee Fest PNW (Portland) 

Applications now closed.

Coffee Fest New York

Now accepting applications.

Coffee Fest Chicago

Application not open.

Coffee Fest Los Angeles

Application not open.


COMPAK DCR Coffee Hollander Chocolate supergood Slow Pour Commerce Portal Rancilio Specialty



Judging Criteria


Each of the judges compares the drink presented by the two competitors in each match and award 1 point to the competitor with the best presentation in each of the seven categories. The competitor receiving the most points on each of the judge's scorecard will be the winner. The competitor will advance by virtue of the judge's scores of 3 to 0 sweep or 2 to 1.

Judging is Based on Seven Categories:
  1. Speed: The competitor who places their drink down first so that it is touching the saucer wins the speed point. Making great latte art quickly is a necessary skill for a professional barista.
  2. Balance/Symmetry: This category refers to how the design sits in the cup. Depending on the classic understanding of the design being presented it should be centered in the cup or balanced in relation to the edges of the cup. This is both an issue of precision and/or esthetic.
  3. Color Distribution: This category refers to the amount of layering and color being folded into the design from the center of the cup and out to the edges of the cup.
  4. Line Clarity: The lines of a design will be judged according to how crisp or sharp they are. Fuzzy or softer edges will lose to defined and clear lines. The design will be judged according to which pattern has the highest percentage of clear lines
  5. Creativity/Difficulty: This category relates to how the artist puts their personal touch on a latte art design compared to their opponent and common understanding of what that designs classic pattern is. In the absence of an obvious creative mark, the overall difficulty of the pours will be assessed. 
  6. Execution: This category judges the overall execution of the design based on what is commonly understood as ideal. Wayward cut-throughs or other elements that are too vague in appearance vs. all elements of the design itself being clear, present, and obvious to the judges.
  7. Presentation: This category is also related to what would be an unacceptable drink to present in a real cafe. If the edges of the cup are filthy, the drink is under poured or over poured the competitor will lose this point. If a competitor uses their own cup and it is chipped it will count against them. *Cups with markings for pouring aids will be counted against in this category.

**While Coffee Fest will provide some cups, we recommend that competitors provide their own steaming pitcher, tamper and cup(s) to achieve their best result.

Prize Money

Prize Money:
  • 1st Place - $2500
  • 2nd Place - $1500
  • 3rd Place - $1000

Meet the Judges

Chris Deferio, Keys to the Shop Podcast
Head Judge

Chris Deferio is an 18 year veteran of the specialty coffee industry. Over the years working in the trenches of some of the nation's best shops Chris has taken on many roles - from award-winning barista work, bar training, and competition -  to management, business development, and consultation. His focus and passion is helping cafes develop the foundational elements for success in caring for their staff, customer, and coffee quality. He now runs Keys to the Shop, a leading industry podcast and consultation business based in Louisville, KY, where he lives with his wife, son, and probably too many coffee mugs. 

Terika Raak, Caffe Vita

Terika Raak currently works for Caffe Vita.  She has been in the industry for more than ten years and continues to get excited about learning new things each day.  Over the past few years, Terika has enjoyed judging at barista competitions and competing in whatever latte art throwdown she can find.

Each event will also have a Guest Judge from the local specialty coffee community.

Rules & Regulations


Rules, Regulations, and Code of Conduct

The Set-Up:

Each of the two stations are equipped with:

  • One Rancilio Specialty RS1
  • 1 Compak Grinder
  • Dillon’s Blend Coffee from Dillanos Coffee Roasters
  • 1 Tamper
  • 1 Knock Box
  • 12oz milk pitchers
  • Whole Milk
  • Bar towels
  • 3oz & 6oz Ceramic Cups

*Competitors are encouraged to bring their own tamper, milk pitcher, and cups

  • Everything else must remain unchanged
  • The espresso bar equipment is only to be used during competition time. At no point is anyone allowed to use the equipment after the competition for any reason outside of explicit permission given by Coffee Fest staff

The Espresso Machine Will Be Pre-Calibrated to the Following Profile:

  • 9 bars
  • R/O water
  • 200 F
  • 18 grams in
  • 32 grams out
  • 28-second duration
Pre-Competition Meeting:
  • We will have a meeting at the Latte Art Competition venue to cover the rules, the work area etc. 
The Competition:

On Deck:

  • Be aware of your scheduled competition time and make sure you are in the competition area at least 15 minutes before you are scheduled to start.
  • If you are not present during your competition time the MC will call your name twice. After this, the next alternate will take your space and you will not be eligible to continue in the competition.

At The Start

  • Wait until the last competitor is done cleaning and has collected their gear
  • Competitors are required to start with empty milk pitchers and may not practice on the equipment prior to the start of the competition time
  • Milk can be staged in the original milk containers
  • Cups may also be staged anywhere but the plate under the camera
  • The two competitors will have a total of 2.5 minutes to pour and submit one milk drink
  • You may pour as many drinks in the time as you like or can but the drink must be touching the plate under the cameras before the 2.5 minutes have elapsed for it to be counted.
  • If you do not make it your opponent will automatically move on.


  • When you have finished you must walk your drink over to the judges table for scoring
  • Wait in the wings for the announcement of the rounds winner
  • A runner will take the tray containing each pour to the center of the seating area for photos
  • Competitors may not touch or use the equipment after their allotted competition time is completed. Once a competitor's final drink is submitted, they may only use the equipment in order to clean their station. Competitors are not free to make any additional drinks past their submitted pour.

1 Point per Category:

  • Speed
  • Balance/Symmetry
  • Color Distribution
  • Line Clarity
  • Creativity/Difficulty
  • Execution
  • Presentation

Suspension or Disqualification:

Coffee Fest Latte Art World Championship Open takes competitor disqualification and or suspension very seriously and will not arrive upon a disqualification and or suspension decision lightly. Any disqualification will be agreed upon by all three judges and the show director. 

Cause For Disqualification:

  • No show.
  • Abusive language toward other competitors, judges or staff.
  • Taunting and/or berating or being loud and distracting toward your opponent during their three minute competition time. 
  • Entering the other competitors space while they are on their competition time
  • Using the espresso equipment for any reason outside of you competition time and clean-up.
  • Any form of sabotage to the equipment, grinder, etc.
  • Entering the judges table space for any reason during the judging process after reasonable warning(s)
  • Failure to appear at two competitions after competitor application accepted and competitor assigned spot on bracket that has been posted and circulated.


Should a competitor fail to show up, the next alternate will be permitted to take their place. Alternates must arrive at the competition venue at the designated time to put their name on the waiting list. It is first come, first served. Previous champions may not compete as alternates. 

No-Show/Pulling From Bracket:

If a competitor is to pull from the competition after the bracket has been set or is not present for their match on-site, a "no-show" will be set against their record and may impact future competing opportunities.

Final Results


Anaheim 2021
1. Nicholas Tanaka - Sugar Land, Texas
2. Proph - Brooklyn, New York
3. Emilee Bryant - New York, New York

Atlanta 2021
1. "Flook" Piyapat Lateerwut - New York, New York
2. Donald Perdermo - Mt. Vernon, New York
3. Emilee Bryant - New York, New York

San Antonio 2021
1. Proph - Brooklyn, New York
2. Matthew Bolchi - Rochester Hills, Michigan
3. Ujae Lee - New York, New York

New York 2020
1. Henry Berrios - Puerto Rico
2. Daisuke Tanaka - Japan
3. Zhong Hu - New York

PNW 2019
1. Emilee Bryant – New York
2. Proph  – New York
3. Sean Ben-Zvi   – New York

Los Angeles 2019
1. Umpaul – South Korea
2. Zhong Yi Hu  – Oakland Gardens, New York
3. Lance Hedrick  – Onyx Coffee Lab; Springdale, Arkansas

Indianapolis 2019
1. Mehdi Chung  – San Francisco, California
2. Umpaul – South Korea
3. Zhong Yi Hu  – Oakland Gardens, New York

New York 2019
1. Emilee Bryant  – Greenway Coffee Company; Houston, Texas
2. Daisuke Tanaka – Turner Style; Osaka, Japan 
3. Umpaul  – South Korea 

Los Angeles 2018
1. Ujae Lee  – Plantshed; New York, NY
2. Daisuke Tanaka – Turner Style; Osaka, Japan 
3. Mason Marth  – Lineage Coffee Roasting; Kissimmee, Florida 

Denver 2018
1. Mason Marth  – Lineage Coffee Roasting; Kissimmee, Florida
2. Matthew Bolchi  – Commonwealth; Rochester Hills, MI
3. Takehiro Okudaira - CAFERISTA; Nagareyama, Japan

Baltimore 2018
1. Lance Hedrick  – Onyx Coffee Lab; Springdale, Arkansas
2. Ujae Lee  – Plant Shed; New York, New York
3. Ryan Lim - Cafein; Burke, Virginia

Portland 2017
1. Antoine Franklin  – Greenway Coffee; Houston, TX
2. Chris Lin  – Milkglider; Taipei City, Taiwan
3. Daisuke Tanaka - Mondial Kaffee 328; Osaka, Japan

Chicago 2017
1. Lance Hedrick  – Dr. Bean’s Coffee and Tea Emporium; Memphis, TN
2. Takashi Ueno  – Cafe Agora; Hamilton, New Zealand
3. Ryan Soeder – Sunergos Coffee; Louisville, KY

Nashville 2017
1. Robert Kim - Bambina NewMarket; Auckland, New Zealand
2. Lance Hedrick - Dr. Bean's Coffee and Tea Emporium; Memphis, TN
3. Daisuke Tanaka - Mondial Kaffee 328; Osaka, Japan

Anaheim 2016
1. Nobumasa Shimoyama – Superrandom; Melbourne, Australia
2. Woodentamper Kim – Café Woodentamper; Seoul, South Korea
3. Supachai Swangumpi  – Bangkok, Thailand

Dallas 2016
1. Shinsaku Fukayama – Sensory Lab; Washington D.C.
2. Antoine Franklin  – Phoenix Coffee Co.; Cleveland, OH
3. Nobumasa Shimoyama – Superrandom; Brighton, Australia

New York 2016
1. Kwok Ying Lai - Sensory Zero; Hong Kong
2. Nobumasa Shimoyama - Superrandom; Brighton, Australia
3. Steven Lim - S&D Coffee and Tea; Concord, NC

Portland 2015
1. Steven Lim - S&D Coffee and Tea; Concord, NC
2. Bethany Hargrove - BARISTA; Portland, OR
3. Kunie Inaba - Platform7; Vancouver, B.C.

Osaka 2015
1. Hirokazu Azuma - Bar Zumaccino; Japan
2. Shu Konishi - % Arabica Kyoto; Japan
3. Kazuma Ozaki - The Cups; Japan

Chicago 2015
1. Daisuke Tanaka - Mondial Kaffee 328; Japan
2. Kenny Smith - Sunergos Coffee; Louisville, KY
3. Ryan Soeder - Intelligentsia Coffee; Chicago, IL

Atlanta 2015
1. Kenny Smith - Sunergos Coffee; Louisville, KY
2. John Letoto - Blacksmith; Houston, TX
3. Nicely Abel - Menotti's Coffee Stop; Venice, CA

Portland 2014
1. Yusuke Ota - Downstairs Coffee; Japan
2. Kenta Tamura - Double Tall Cafe; Japan
3. Daisuke Tanaka - Bondi Cafe; Japan

St. Louis 2014
1. Cole McBride - Public US; Las Vegas, NV
2. Simeon Briker - The Roasterie; Kansas City, MO
3. Kuzuma Ozaki - Air Cafe; Japan

Tokyo 2014
1. Junichi Yamaguchi - Arabica Kyoto
2. Takahiro Ando - Town Square Coffee Roasters
3. Nobu Shimoyama - OLiE & aRI

New York 2014
1. Cabell Tice - The Thinking Cup; Boston, MA
2. Lee Kam Wo
3. Junichi Yamaguchi - The Theatre Coffee; Yokohama

Seattle 2013
1. Cabell Tice - The Thinking Cup; Boston, MA
2. Nobu Shimoyama - South Yara; Austrailia
3. Junichi Yamaguchi - The Theatre Coffee; Yokohama

Chicago 2013
1. Jennifer Hyesung Chun - Buena Park, CA
2. Junichi Yamaguchi - Yokohama
3. Kenny Smith - Sunergos Coffee; Louisville, KY

  • Cabell Tice - New York, March 2013
  • Kei Hamada - Seattle, September 2012
  • Christopher "Nicely" Abel Alameda - Chicago, June 2012
  • "Kim" Yeung Yiu Fai - New York, March 2012
  • Christopher "nicely" Abel Alameda - Seattle, September 2011
  • Row Aczon - Hawaii,  July 2011
  • Satoru Oiso - San Diego,  June 2011
  • Ryan Soeder - Chicago, February 2011
  • Adam McGovern - Seattle, October 2010
  • Christopher "Nicely" Abel Alameda - Minneapolis, June 2010
  • Jeremy Sterner - Meadowlands, March 2010
  • Andrew Milsead - Seattle, September 2009
  • Chris DeFerio - Las Vegas, June 2009
  • Kevin Emmons - Chicago, February 2009
  • Young Min Lee - Hong Kong, November 2008
  • Hiroshi Sawada - Seattle, September 2008
  • Ben Helfen - Washington D.C., February 2008
  • Layla Osberg - Seattle, November 2007
  • Layla Osberg - Atlanta, June 2007
  • Chris Baca - Chicago, February 2007
  • Colter Jones - Seattle, October 2006
  • Reid Hickman - Las Vegas, June 2006
  • Reid Hickman - Washington D.C., February 2006
  • Lindsay Parker - Seattle, October 2005
  • Billy Wilson - Las Vegas, June 2005
  • Chris DeFerio - Chicago, February 2005
  • JC Morris - Seattle, October 2004
  • Daniel Wayne - Las Vegas, June 2004
  • Chris DeFerio - Washington D.C., March 2004
  • JC Morris - Seattle, October 2003
  • Sammy Piccolo - Atlantic City, March 2003
  • Zach Lackik - Seattle, November 2002