Broadway Barista is Best-of-the-Best

Chicago competitor wins top honors in national competition

Wednesday, Mar 11, 2009  |  Updated 6:28 PM CDT
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Chicago Barista Takes Top Spot in National Competition

Joe Raedle/Getty Images

A local guy took his talent for making espresso drinks to a national competition and he was crowned the best-of-the-best.

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Chicago Barista Takes Top Spot in National Competition

Phillips says his love of coffee began brewing eight years ago at a small coffee house in Michigan.
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The nation's top espresso-makers battled it out yesterday to be called best-of-the-best, but it was Mike Phillips of Intelligentsia Coffee & Tea, Chicago, who took home top honors.

Phillips won the Specialty Coffee Association of America's (SCAA) highly competitive 2009 United States Barista Championship (USBC), according to a news release from Intelligentsia Coffee.

The competition took place over the weekend in Portland, Oregon

As the industry's most-watched contest for coffeehouse professionals, the USBC encourages and recognizes achievement in the art and skill of espresso-drink preparation and service.

As the 2009 United States Barista Champion, Phillips receives the highest national honor for a barista, a trophy, $1,000 in cash, and an all-expenses paid trip to Atlanta, Ga., to represent the United States in the World Barista Championship April 16-19, 2009.

With Phillips' victory in Portland, competitors from Intelligentsia Coffee have now won three of the last four United States Barista Competitions. According to the release, Kyle Glanville won the event in 2008, and in 2006 Matt Riddle finished first.

Phillips works as a barista and Retail Director of Coffee at Intelligentsia's Broadway coffee bar, located at 3123 N.  Broadway.

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