A Blaxland barista will fly to Italy next month to compete in the World Aeropress Championships after taking out the national title in Melbourne on May 17.
Dylan Johnson beat 17 other competitors to claim the crown in the knockout competition using an aeropress, a device invented in 2005 that forces coffee through a filter by pressing down a plunger.
“The way the competition works is very simple. There’s no presenting, there’s no talking about the coffee. You literally make a coffee and give it to the judges. Everyone is using the same coffee. Then the judges choose the coffee they think is the best,” said Mr Johnson.
Despite the high pressure atmosphere of the finals, Mr Johnson said he didn’t feel nervous.
“To be honest I was like ‘I can’t believe this is happening’... I didn’t have a lot of time to prepare for this competition so there was a little bit of disbelief [that I made it to the final round]. It was exciting.”
The 30-year-old works at The Paramount Coffee Project in Surry Hills but started his barista career in Springwood and Katoomba.
A psychology graduate, his passion gravitated towards coffee after he began working as a barista in 2009 following an overseas trip.
“I just really, really got into that world and found it really interesting. I started learning about different coffee varieties and how that changes the flavour of the coffee, about different brewing techniques, and how roasting affects it,” he said.
The 2014 World Aeropress Championships will be held in Rimini, Italy on June 9. Now in its seventh year, the event has grown to include two dozen regional and national competitions.