The Road to the World Barista Championships: Winston Thomas
In our first in a new series of short interviews with the World Barista Championship competitors, we ask our questions to Winston Thomas, the South African Barista Champion. You can follow his journey on Instagram: @winston_douglas
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 can't remember the exact day. I didn't have the epiphany moment that many people do. To be honest, it began during my engineering studies; coffee kept me going throughout the late-night studies and it developed into a bit of a romance from there.
What was your first coffee job?
My first coffee job was working at a small market in Woodstock, Cape Town. The owner agreed to train me as a form of payment. I can't even remember what coffee we were serving!
If you didn’t work in coffee, what would you do?
Honestly, I probably would've still been in engineering and construction. My family own a construction business, so I would most likely have joined them.
What exceptional coffee will you be using in the WBCs in Amsterdam. Tell us about the coffee and what it tastes like?
Unfortunately, I can't reveal this just yet! Perhaps I can give you some to taste in Amsterdam :)
Who would you most like to make coffee for and why?
My grandparents on my mom’s side. Mainly because my gran was known for making the best stove-top coffee around. I'm assuming she would have been the most critical judge of my coffee.
Who would play you in the story of your life?
If you opened a cafe today, what would be on your first day playlist?
80's funk and soul!
What’s your favourite way to make coffee?
At the moment I am really enjoying my AeroPress. I haven't worked behind a bar in a while, so I've been drinking a lot more filter coffee.
What are you most excited about in coffee?
The unknown. The industry is ever changing which really excites me.