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The Road to the World Barista Championships: Junior Vargas

The Road to the World Barista Championships: Junior Vargas

Austria's Barista Champion, Junior Vargas, is our next competitor to answer our Best Coffee questions for the World Barista Championship. You can follow his journey on Instagram: @jr.coffeeman

The WBC competition will take place at the Amsterdam World of Coffee on 21st to 23rd June this year.


When did you fall in love with coffee?

I am so lucky to come from a family of coffee producers, so coffee has always been running through my veins. However, it was eight years ago that I discovered, and fell in love with, specialty coffee, when I began working as a barista.


What was your first coffee job?

With regards to working with coffee, my first experience, and the one I am most proud of, was picking coffee at my family’s farm.


If you didn’t work in coffee, what would you do?

I love gastronomy, and coffee is part of that. But if I had to do something else I would work in architecture, combining my other loves for construction and design.  


What exceptional coffee will you be using in the WBCs in Amsterdam? Tell us about the coffee and what it tastes like.

I am planning to use a Peruvian coffee with which I have been working with for more than four years; put simply, it is coffee with a unique story of origin to tell.


Who would you most like to make coffee for and why?

I really like making coffee for new customers, because I love to see them experience with specialty coffee for the first time


Who would play you in the story of your life?

Abraham Lincoln, he believed in the pursuit of greatness and that it doesn’t matter where you are from. Rather, it matters where are you going and what you are doing it for.


If you opened a café today, what would be on your first day playlist?

 I already have a shop in Vienna called GOTA COFFEE and, whilst I don’t remember the playlist from the first day as we were so excited, I am sure Adele was on there. 


What’s your favourite way to make coffee?

I really enjoy making and drinking filter coffee like V60 or Kalita, simple to make, but brings the most complex results.


What are you most excited about in coffee?

There is so much going on in the coffee community. The third wave coffee is unifying baristas, roasters, producers, and consumers. The science of coffee, innovation, tools, and competitions. All of these things make me fell excited for what the specialty coffee scene will look like in 20 years.

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