Denver Qualifier Finalists Announced

Denver Qualifier Finalists Announced

The first CoffeeChamps Qualifying Event for the 2018-2019 season was held in Denver, CO on December 1-2, 2018. Nearly 200 coffee professionals from all over the country gathered to compete to qualify in the U.S. Coffee Championships, which will be held March 15, 2019 in Kansas City, MO. View the finalists for each of the 5 qualifying competitions – Barista, Brewers, Coffee in Good Spirits, Cup Tasters, and Roaster – and the full rankings below.

Results announced for U.S. Coffee Championships Qualifying Competitions Held in New Orleans


Over the weekend of February 3-4, 2018, coffee professionals from around the country gathered in New Orleans, LA for the United States Coffee Championships Qualifying Competitions. The competitors listed below will be moving on to compete at the national championships in Seattle, WA this spring! 



(51 competitors total)

#1. Andrea Allen, Onyx Coffee Lab Springdale, AR (Score: 334)
#2. Isaiah Sheese, Archetype Coffee Omaha, NE (Score: 307)
#3. Jared Holt, Black & White Coffee Roasters, Wake Forest, NC (Score: 300)
#4. T. Ben Fischer, Elixr Coffee, Philadelphia, PA (Score: 286)
#5. Sam Neely, Switchback Coffee Roasters, Colorado Springs, CO (Score: 285.5)
#6. Simeon Bricker, Splitlog Coffee Co., Kansas City, KS (Score: 283.5)
#7. Joel Bigelow, Messenger Coffee Co., Kansas City, MO (Score: 283.5)
#8. Jenna Gotthelf, Everyman Espresso, Brooklyn, NY (Score: 277)
#9. Samantha Spillman, Dillanos Coffee Roasters, Sumner, WA (Score: 276.5)
#10. Amy Trompeter, Ultimo Coffee, Philadelphia, PA (Score: 272)
#11. Steph Caronna, North Carolina Museum of Art, Apex, NC (Score: 262.5)
#12. Bailey Arnold, Gregorys Coffee Brooklyn, NY (Score: 262)
#13. Sam Schaefer, Stovetop Coffee Roasters, Ann Arbor, MI (Score: 255.5)
#14. Dylan Siemens, Onyx Coffee Lab, Springdale, AR (Score: 252)
#15. Lucas Bermejo, Peregrine Espresso, Washington, DC (Score: 249.5)
#16. Radames Roldan, Blueprint Coffee, St. Louis, MO (Score: 248.5)
#17. Brandon Acuña, Fleet Coffee, Austin, TX (Score: 247.5)
#18. Oodie Taliaferro Independent, Kemp, TX (Score: 247.5)

[View Rankings and Scores]


(36 Competitors Total)

#1. Wade Preston, Prevail Coffee Roasters, Montgomery, AL (Score: 156.12)
#2. Tyler Duncan, Topeca Coffee Roasters, Tulsa, OK (Score: 154.71)
#3. Kaley Gann, Messenger Coffee, Kansas City, MO (Score: 154.61)
#4. Sebastian Legner, Cafe Pomarrosa, Denver, CO (Score: 153.2)
#5. James Spano, Cup to Cup Coffee Roasters, Savannah, GA (Score: 152.19)
#6. Don Lawrence, Intelligentsia Coffee, Chicago, IL (Score: 152.05)
#7. Elika Liftee, Onyx Coffee Lab, Springdale, AR (Score: 151.78)
#8. Rebecca Woodard, George Howell, Acton, MA (Score: 150.79)
#9. Cody McGregor, Reanimator Coffee, Philadelphia, PA (Score: 150.58)
#10. Nick Stevens, West Oak Coffee, Denton, TX (Score: 150.56)
#11. James Gibbs, Caravela Coffee, Durham, NC (Score: 150.55)
#12. Alex Hanson, Spyhouse Coffee, Minneapolis, MN (Score: 150.17)

[View Rankings and Scores]


(30 Competitors Total)

#1. Bevan Cammell, Loyal Coffee, Colorado Springs, CO (Score: 130.38)
#2. Hugh Morretta, La Colombe Coffee Roasters, Havertown, PA (Score: 124.05)
#3. Elliot Reinecke, Steady State Roasting, Cardiff, CA (Score: 123.25)
#4. Marshall Moore, Onyx Coffee Lab, Springdale, AR (Score: 121.75)
#5. Chris Cross Cafe, Grumpy Brooklyn, NY (Score: 119.42)
#6. Eric Stone, Mudhouse Coffee Roasters, Charlottesville, VA (Score: 119.37)

[View Rankings and Scores]


(33 Competitors Total)

#1. James Gibbs, Caravela Coffee, Durham, NC (Cups: 6 | Time: 1:45)
#2. Jason Burkum, Archetype Coffee, Omaha, NE (Cups: 6 | Time: 2:38)
#3. Khanh Trang, Greater Goods Coffee Roasters, Austin, TX (Cups: 6 | Time: 3:11)
#4. Thomas Chandler, Black Oak Coffee Roaster, Ukiah, CA (Cups: 6 | Time: 4:03)
#5. Katie Britt, Dynamite Coffee, Morley, MO (Cups: 6 | Time: 4:07)
#6. Michael Harwood, Ceremony Coffee Roasters, Annapolis, MD (Cups: 6 | Time: 5:34)
#7. Josh Edens, Onyx Coffee Lab, Springdale, AR (Cups: 5 | Time: 2:14)
#8. Marie Hucal, Madcap Coffee Co, Grand Rapids, MI (Cups: 5 | Time: 2:25)
#9. Samuel Demisse, Keffa Coffee, Baltimore, MD (Cups: 5 | Time: 3:27)
#10. Aaron Lerner, Independent, Manlius, NY (Cups: 5 | Time: 3:41)
#11. Jie Jiang, Andante Coffee Roasters, Los Angeles, CA (Cups: 5 | Time: 3:44)
#12. Siobhan Gottlieb, Volcafe Specialty Coffee, Petaluma, CA (Cups: 5 | Time: 3:48)
#13. Zayne Dietterick, Keffa Coffee, Baltimore, MD (Cups: 5 | Time: 3:55)
#14. Sarah Lambeth, Congregation Coffee Roasters, New Orleans, LA (Cups: 5 | Time: 4:06)
#15. Tiffany Opoku, Coffeemania, New York, NY (Cups: 5 | Time: 4:31)

[View Rankings and Scores]

Results announced for U.S. Coffee Championships Qualifying Competitions Held in Reno

Over the weekend of December 9-10, 2017, coffee professionals from around the country gathered in Reno, NV for the United States Coffee Championships Qualifying Competitions. The competitors listed below will be moving on to compete at the national championships in Seattle, WA this spring! 



(36 competitors total)

#1. Reef Bessette, Saint Frank Coffee, San Francisco (Score: 279)
#2. Eli Ramirez, Halfwit Coffee Roasters, Chicago (Score: 277)
#3. Cole McBride, Independent, Seattle (Score: 270.5)
#4. Kay Cheon, Dune Coffee Roasters, Santa Barbara, Calif. (Score: 265.5)
#5. Naida Lindberg, Verve Coffee, Santa Cruz, Calif. (Score: 260.5)
#6: Edward Griffin, PT’s Coffee, Topeka, Kan. (Score: 258.5)
#7. Mike Marquard, Blueprint Coffee, St. Louis (Score: 257.5)
#8. Emily Orendorff, Boxcar Coffee Roasters, Denver (Score: 250)
#9. Chelsea Rae, The Roost, Lawrence, Kan. (Score: 250)
#10. Lizzie Rodrigue, Bluebeard Coffee Roasters, Tacoma, Wash. (Score: 248.5)
#11. Howard Chang, Space Craft Coffee, Brooklyn, N.Y. (Score: 247.5)
#12. Shepherd Wadley, Huckleberry Roasters, Denver (Score: 247)
#13. Mike Greene, Stovetop Roasters, Holland, Mich. (Score: 246.5)
#14. David Castillo, Joe Coffee Co., New York (Score 244.5)
#15. Erin Tarectecan, Crema Coffee House, Denver (Score: 235)
#16. Tae-Wan Kim, Brew Well, Kindness and Mischief, Arcadia, Calif. (Score: 233)
#17. Heather McCullough, Novo Coffee, Denver (Score: 226.5)
#18: Sam Brown, Pilcrow Coffee, Milwaukee (Score: 225)

[View Rankings and Scores]



(31 Competitors Total)

#1. Justin Goodhart, Sweet Bloom, Denver (Score: 161.14)
#2. Jacob White, Bird Rock Coffee Roasters, San Diego (Score: 157.94)
#3. Sloane Wachob, Novo Coffee, Denver (Score: 157.5)
#4. Sam Schroeder, Olympia Coffee Roasting Co, Olympia, Wash. (Score: 156.03)
#5. Emmeline Wang, Saint Frank Coffee, Fremont, Calif. (Score: 155.59)
#6. Matt Foster, Kaldi's Coffee Roasting Co, St. Louis (Score: 155.19)
#7. Jennifer Hwang, Klatch Coffee, Rancho Cucamonga, Calif. (Score: 155.13)
#8. Andy Tan, Equator Coffees and Teas, Fairfax, Calif. (Score: 155)
#9. Michael White, Independent, Baltimore (Score: 154.95)
#10. Jason Miller, Mazarine Coffee, San Francisco (Score: 154.3)
#11. Blair Smith, Augie's Coffee Roasters, Calimesa, Calif. (Score: 153.48)
#12. Jon Frech, Black Oak Coffee Roasters, Ukiah, CA (Score: 152.58)
#13. Kelly Hill, Temple Coffee Roasters, Sacramento (Score: 151.19)
#14. Samantha Sun, La Colombe, Brooklyn (Score: 151.13)

[View Rankings and Scores]



(29 Competitors Total)

#1. Evan Inatome, Elixr Coffee, Philadelphia (Score: 129.46)
#2. Ian Picco, Topeka Coffee Roasters, Tulsa, Okla. (Score: 125.67)
#3. Andrew Oberholzer, Joe Coffee Co., New York (Score: 124.71)
#4. Taylor Gresham, Evocation Coffee Roasters, Canyon, Texas (Score: 122.53)
#5. Janine Cindy, Joe Bean Coffee Roasters, Rochester, N.Y. (Score: 121.75)
#6. Evan Schubarth, Switchback Coffee Roasters, Colorado Springs, Colo. (Score: 121.71)

[View Rankings and Scores]



(33 Competitors Total)

#1. Tommy Tae U Kim, Balrog Coffee Roastery, Los Angeles (6 cups, 3:34)
#2. Eduard Andrusyak, Chocolate Fish Coffee Roasters, Sacramento, Calif. (6 cups, 5:34)
#3. Adam Christopher Snow, Beans & Bagels, Chicago (5 cups, 2:50)
#4. Charles Lambert, Boxcar Coffee Roasters, Boulder, Colo. (5 cups, 2:55)
#5. Ben Heins, Crop to Cup, Chicago (5 cups, 3:41)
#6. Ken Selby, Visions Espresso, Seattle (5 cups, 3:49)
#7. Austin Amento, Augie’s Coffee Roaster, Calimesa, Calif. (5 cups, 5:01)
#8. Matt Farewell, Dune Coffee Roasters, Santa Barbara, Calif. (5 cups, 5:52)
#9. Jennifer Hwang, Klatch Coffee, Rancho Cucamonga, Calif. (4 cups, 1:55)
#10. Jon Ferguson, Arbor Day Foundation, Lincoln, Neb. (4 cups, 2:15)
#11. Ian Picco, Topeka Coffee Roasters, Tulsa, Okla. (4 cups, 2:26)
#12. Jen McElroy, Klatch Coffee, Rancho Cucamonga, Calif. (4 cups, 2:39)
#13. Miguel Vicuna, Sweet Bloom, Denver (4 cups, 2:42)
#14. Spencer Aidukaits, Peixoto, Tempe, Ariz. (4 cups, 3:35)
#15. David Wilson, Coffeebar, Reno, Nev. (4 cups, 3:41)

[View Rankings and Scores]

U.S. Coffee Championship Working Group Statement

The U.S. Competitions Working Group for the United States Coffee Championships (USCC) exists to create and foster safe spaces and events for professional development and community engagement through coffee competitions in the U.S. for its coffee community. The U.S. Working Group supports all participants including our future champions decisions on how they would like to participate in the 2018 season.

In light of the Specialty Coffee Association’s (SCA) recent announcement regarding the Deferred Candidate policy, and how international host locations are chosen, it is important to clarify that the U.S. Competitions Working Group, which is composed of volunteers, and various sub competition working groups, are not consulted in any decisions regarding venues, city locations, policies or any other aspects for World Competitions. While we as a group are discouraged and disheartened by the communications and decisions made by WCE and the SCA Board, we will continue to support our U.S. CoffeeChamps events and National Competitions as well as those competitors, volunteers, and judges who choose to participate.

The U.S. Competitions Working Group would also like to acknowledge and support all volunteers, judges, competitors, and sponsors in their decision on how to bring change and inclusivity to all SCA members on the international level. We are so thankful for the passion and energy all participants bring to the competition community. 

Would you like to compete or judge or volunteer? We support you.

Would you prefer to withdraw to express your disagreement? We support you.

We respect everyone's decision on how they would like to engage going forward. There have been great conversations, thoughts, and suggestions coming from the town halls being held and the FAQ (Click Here) & webinars (Click Here) have quite a bit of information and background on the situation. We encourage everyone to get as much information as possible and stay informed, communicate, and engage with the SCA Board. There will be a Town Hall hosted prior to CoffeeChamps Reno this weekend. We encourage all that are attending CoffeeChamps in Reno to come to the town hall and become informed and bring constructive ideas on how change can look and work moving forward.

Reno Town Hall | Friday 12/8 @6pm
Hub Coffee Roasters Riverside Café
727 Riverside Dr, Reno, NV 89503

We gain more when we stand and work together. The U.S. Competitions Working Group is here to support its competition community in every capacity it can. Compete, judge, volunteer, or not, we stand by you, we hear you. This group will continue to work hard and make competitions more accessible to everyone. This year we have created the opportunity for 204 Baristas, 162 Brewers to take stage through the U.S. Preliminary Competitions, 120 Baristas, 72 Brewers, 72 Tasters, and 60 Roasters to take stage, through the Qualifying Competitions at CoffeeChamps, and 36 Baristas, 24 Brewers, 30 Tasters, 12 Roasters at the U.S. Coffee Championships in Seattle. We support you.

We are thrilled to see you very soon in Reno and New Orleans for the USCC Qualifying Events.

Miguel Vicuna
Chair of the U.S. Competitions Working Group

CoffeeChamps Dates and Locations Announced for 2018 Competition Cycle!

Artboard 1.jpg

Reno Sparks Convention Center
December 9-10, 2017

Artboard 1 copy.jpg

Contemporary Arts Center of New Orleans
February 3-4, 2018

CoffeeChamps Dates and Locations Announced!

The U.S. Coffee Championships (USCC) Preliminaries have concluded! Over the past couple of months, Barista and Brewers Cup Preliminaries took place at 8 events throughout the country, organized and hosted by local SCA Campuses and member facilities. You can view the results here.

Now, we are excited to announce the dates and locations of this season’s CoffeeChamps—the Qualifying Competitions for the U.S. Barista, Brewers Cup, Cup Tasters, and Roaster Championships! The top 8 baristas and top 4 brewers from each of the Preliminaries have earned themselves a spot in the USCC Qualifying Competitions, and the rest of the spots are open registration starting on October 25th. 

CoffeeChamps will be held in two locations—in Reno, NVat the Reno Sparks Convention Center from December 9–10, 2017, and in New Orleans, LA at the Contemporary Arts Center of New Orleans from February 3–4, 2018.



Competitor and Judge Registration Opens Wednesday, October 25th at 10:00 AM Pacific Time

Didn’t compete or place at the Preliminaries? That’s okay! There are open registration spots available for all competitions. Be ready, registration will sell out quickly!

CoffeeChamps will include the BaristaBrewers CupCup Tasters, and Roaster Qualifying Competitions. And, back by popular demand, The Cafe by the BGA, Brew Masters, The Market, Roaster Village, and so much more! For more information including competitor and judges Online Learning Session schedules, please visit the U.S. Coffee Championships website.

Interested in Judging at CoffeeChamps?

Membership has its perks! Members judge for free. Look for the promo code in your email or contact us at! Registration will open at 10:00 AM Pacific Time on October 25th. 


Attendee Registration is Now Open for CoffeeChamps

There is something for everyone at CoffeeChamps!

  • Taste competitors coffee at the BGA Café
  • Be a guest judge at the Barista and Brewers Cup competition and taste amazing competition coffee
  • Take a sweet selfie in front of the SCA Flavor Wheel at the Cup Tasters stage
  • Hear from multiple roasters on their roasting technique for this year’s Roaster Competition and taste their coffees
  • Visit the Roaster Village to engage with roasters and sample their coffees
  • In The Market, experience the local business community

Ticket Prices 
(Weekend Pass) 
Pre-Sale: $15       Day of: $20


Volunteer at CoffeeChamps and Earn a Free Badge!

Volunteer opportunities are available in all four competitions at both CoffeeChamps events as well as The Cafe—supported by the Barista Guild of America, the Roasters Village, and general event support. 

Volunteers who work 5 or more hours will receive a free pass to attend CoffeeChamps! Most positions do not require prior coffee experience or knowledge, so we encourage you to get involved! 

Want your Coffee Featured at CoffeeChamps?

Some of the best and brightest in our industry could be tasting your coffee! We are looking for donated coffee for Cup Tasters, Brewers Cup, and judges’ workshops. If you are interested, please complete this form.

Many sponsorships are still available. Contact Susan Gates at


A Note from the Chair, Miguel Vicuna

Dear Coffee Community,

The Preliminaries events that took place were a great success and we were thrilled to see the member engagement that took place, as well as the high level of commitment and passion from our competitors that continues to grow year after year. I am looking forward to seeing you all very soon at CoffeeChamps!

Miguel Vicuna
Chair, U.S. Competitions Working Group

Official Title Sponsor
For Reno CoffeeChamps

Official Title Sponsor
For New Orleans CoffeeChamps