The Road to the World Barista Championships: Mindaugas Ryškus
The Lithuanian Barista Champion, Mindaugas Ryškus, loves the creativity that coffee allows him to express; he also loves communicating over his coffee. Here, he answers our questions for the World Barista Championship competitors. You can follow his journey on Instagram: @own.story.to.tell
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?
Fall in love? I'm not sure if we are really in love. My obsession to communicate with people has kept me in the coffee industry for 10 years. Coffee is a wonderful tool for me to express myself and share good emotions and deliciousness in the cup of course! I really do enjoy the process of making coffee, and all the love I receive from people enjoying it is a decent reward.
What was your first coffee job?
I started as a chain café barista when I was 18 years old.
If you didn’t work in coffee, what would you do?
I would probably work in any other industry, or not work at all. But I'm sure, that my hunger for creative work would not be smaller.
What exceptional coffee will you be using in the WBCs in Amsterdam? Tell us about the coffee and what it tastes like.
I chose beans from Colombia, Cundinamarca region, where amazing producers "La Palma Y El Tucan" does a really great job helping local farmers by processing their crops, also they do grow amazing coffees by themselves. On the stage, I'll brew washed and lactic fermented Castillo variety beans, I love the mouthfeel of this coffee!
Who would you most like to make coffee for and why?
For those who I love the most.
Who would play you in the story of your life?
If you opened a café today, what would be on your first day playlist?
I think something really groovy, like Anderson Paak and The Free Nationals.
What’s your favourite way to make coffee?
It changes through time. I think it's more due to emotion not the technique or gadget.
What are you most excited about in coffee?
I love the social aspect of it.