Tuesday, July 2, 2024

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The Specialty Food & Drinks Asia (SFDA) and Specialty Coffee & Tea Asia (SCTA) events recently concluded after three successful days. The trade show focused on premium and gourmet food and beverages was held at the Sands Expo and Convention Center in Singapore. Managed by IEG Asia, the events were part of the inaugural SIGEP Asia, an extension of the renowned Italian SIGEP worldwide exhibition for artisan gelato, pastry, bakery and coffee. He ran concurrently with Restaurant Asia and was associated with Food2Go Delivery and Takeaway Expo.

During the SCTA, the Singapore National Coffee Championship (SNCC), organized by the Singapore Coffee Association, was held over three days and 70 competitors participated. These participants competed for the title in four main categories: Singapore National Barista Championship, Singapore National Brewers Cup, Singapore National Latte Art Championship and Singapore Cup Tasters Championship. SNCC serves as the premier competition for Singapore’s coffee sector, aiming to elevate the barista profession and encourage excellence in coffee preparation. The winners of each category will represent Singapore at the 2025 World Coffee Championship to be held across three continents.

Wong Ruoqi, known as Chris, claimed the Singapore National Barista Championship. As Head of Coffee at Santino, Chris will represent Singapore at the World Barista Championship in October 2025 in Milan, Italy. The competition tested participants’ ability to create inventive espresso-based drinks.

Alicia Tan, director of Homeground Coffee Roasters and also a previous years winner, won the Singapore National Brewers Cup once again. He will participate in the World Brewers Cup to be held in Jakarta, Indonesia in May 2025. The competition emphasizes the skill of brewing filtered coffee manually.

Tan Jia Min from The Populous: Coffee and Food Company won the Singapore National Late Art Championship. She will compete in the World Latte Art Championship in Geneva, Switzerland in June 2025, where competitors use milk to create elaborate designs in their lattes.

“The Singapore National Barista Championship sponsored by Santino is a highly technical series, and I am happy that all my hard work and preparation has paid off. It will be an incredible honor to fly Singapore’s flag on the world stage. I look forward to showcasing the creativity and passion of our coffee scene in Italy next year,” said Wong Ruoqi (Chris), Singapore National Barista Champion.

Starbucks Coffee Singapore Barista Tan Yee Xin emerged as the Singapore Cup Tasters Champion. She will compete in the World Cup Testers Championship in Geneva in June 2025. This category challenges contestants to discern subtle differences in coffee flavor.

“Winning the Singapore National Brewers Cup is a huge achievement as the competition is about making the perfect cup. Singapore’s coffee scene has truly grown by leaps and bounds, and this win is dedicated to the incredible work baristas do every day, transforming beans into something beautiful. I am determined to hone my craft and compete at the highest level,” said Alicia Tan, Singapore National Brewers Cup Champion.

SCTA and SNCC have highlighted and celebrated the vibrant coffee scene in Singapore, introducing local talent to the global stage. At SCTA, a wide selection of specialty coffee equipment and products were showcased by local and international brands such as TIMEMORE, DASHER Singapore and Allpress Espresso.

“It was an exciting yet nerve-wracking experience, but I am thrilled to win the title of Singapore Late Art Champion. I look forward to showcasing my late art skills and creativity on a prestigious international stage in Switzerland next year, and will do my best to make Singapore proud,” said Tan Jia Min, Singapore National Late Art Champion.

SIGEP Asia, the fifth edition of Restaurant Asia and other related events, attracted more than 11,000 trade visitors and more than 320 brands from more than 30 countries. This large-scale event serves as a focal point for the global F&B and hospitality sectors, featuring exhibitions, leadership seminars, seminars, masterclasses and more, contributing significantly to technological innovation and sustainability in the industry.

“Claiming the Singapore Cup Tasters title feels like a dream come true. Even though I had a throat infection throughout the competition, I decided to let my tongue do the talking and trust my taste buds. Looking forward to seeing how it stacks up against the best. I would like to thank the Singapore Coffee Association, my team at Starbucks Coffee Singapore, as well as fellow competitors for this enjoyable experience,” said Tan Yee Xin, Singapore Cup Testers Champion.

“The caliber of talent on display at SNCC this year was truly remarkable. Each and every participant demonstrated exceptional technical skills as well as a deep understanding and appreciation for coffee. His dedication to his craft is truly inspiring and we are confident that he will represent Singapore proudly at the World Coffee Championship. I would like to thank our judges from Singapore, Australia, China, Malaysia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Philippines, South Korea, Taiwan and Thailand, for sharing their time and expertise, and my team at SCA. event and ensuring that the four competitions run smoothly,” said Victor Mah, President of the Singapore Coffee Association.

“It has been exciting to host SNCC at SCTA in our first-ever SIGEP Asia edition, showcasing Singapore’s talents to the world and showcasing Singapore’s passion for the F&B industry to a global audience. We are proud to have provided a platform where exceptional talent can shine and inspire others. This truly represents SIGEP – a world expo for food service excellence – and we look forward to connecting more communities across continents,” said Ilaria Cicero, CEO of IEG Asia and organizer of the event.

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