Hearts, rosettas, tulips and swans. These were some of the designs made at the second annual Art for Art – Latte Art Throwdown at The Bean on Jan. 31.
People filed into The Bean to watch as the baristas battled it out to see who could make the best latte art. The competition was a 16 person single elimination tournament style events, which awarded places 1 through 4 with different cash prizes, coffee products, apparel, etc.
Cristobal Francisquez, a barista at The Bean, said this was the second year of the event and was just as successful.
“Last year was the first event and I think I just wanted to bring something to Vermillion that not a lot of people have been able to experience,” Francisquez said. “A lot of these events pair up with a non-profit or a charity organization to help raise money for a cause.”
The money raised at the event went to the Vermillion Mural Project, which is designed to create public art spaces for members in the community to express themselves through visual art.
The first round of the tournament was the free pour: any style pour, with no restrictions. For the second round the contestants spun a wheel that included the challenges of creating a heart, rosetta, tulip or free pour. In the third round, the contestants were required to use alternative milk and free pour.
And for the final round, the last two contestants had three minutes to make one pour and were judged on speed, difficulty of design, symmetry and various other categories.
The Latte Art event has brought in many different baristas from the surrounding areas, like Salvador Jaimes, who represented La Luna Cafe in Sioux Falls.
Jaimes said the experience allowed him to meet new people and make some new friends.
“One thing that is important about coffee making is that a lot of people like coffee so we’re making a product that can relate to many different types of people that have one thing in common and that is coffee,” Jaimes said.
The event drew people from all different walks of life and put them in a room where community members can come together and bond with one another while watching latte art being created, Francisquez said.
“I thought the event went extremely well,” Francisquez said. “My only hope was that we could’ve gotten more people to compete but otherwise everything was great.”