October 28, 2016

Will Priestley WINS Inaugural Breezey Masters event

Espresso Room, Sydney hosted the inaugural Grand Breezey Masters event in Circular Quay, Sydney earlier this week. This national competition consisted of 8 state qualification rounds and over 150 baristas. Will Priestley of Pilgrim Coffee in Hobart prevailed and held aloft the coveted Reg Barber Grand Breezey Master Trophy and a $10,000 North America trip to attend the SCAA event in Seattle in April 2017.




1st – Will Priestley, Pilgrim Coffee – Hobart, TAS
2nd – Aaron Dongsu Shin, Short Black Café – VIC
3rd – Seng Sanoubane, Espresso Room – ACT

The competition format was quite challenging with scoring evenly weighted between taste and presentation. Competitors were required to present 6 cups in 10 minutes using the Almond Breeze Barista Blend pouring a number of set latte art patterns (Heart, Rosetta, Tulip, Swan, 2 x Free Pour) and select the right coffee to use to get the best flavour marriage with the Almond Breeze Barista Blend.

The night also hosted an Almond Breezey Smackdown event with over 30 competitors battling it out for a $500 Prize. NSW Breezey Master Sam Taylor fought off all challengers to take the cash.

Almond Breeze Barista Blend is Australia’s first almond milk developed in partnership with baristas, specifically for baristas. “Coffee is an important part of Australian culture and quality really matters. Recognising and understanding this culture, we knew it was critically important to develop a product that performs just like milk and complements fine coffee in terms of taste. Barista Blend was developed in close partnership with some of the country’s leading baristas, from a range of cafés. We tested and trialed the product over the course of a year, developing the perfect formulation which complements coffee beans” says Roger Ringwood, Country Manager Aust / NZ Manager Blue Diamond. The team behind Almond Breeze is committed to producing products that work for cafes and baristas.

Roger also mentioned that he

was blown away by the skills of the masters.

Andy Tseng of Pixel Coffee Brewers WA, Raihaan Esat of Di Bella Coffee QLD, Julian Mou of Harriet Expresso Bar NT, Joshua Hockey of C.R.E.A.M. SA, Samuel Taylor of Soul Origin NSW, Seng Sanoubane of Espresso Room ACT, Will Priestley of Pilgrim Coffee TAS and Aaron Dongsu Shin of Short Black Café VIC.

Roger says, “10 years ago if somebody told me that I’d be at a barista championship watching so many amazing baristas at work I’d never have believed them. Next year we plan to grow this competition to include a number of international competitors. To date there has been interest from Japan, UK, USA, South Africa and across the tasman in New Zealand. We look forward to continuing this journey with Almond Breeze and supporting baristas.

Grand Breezey Master Will Priestley, praised event sponsor Almond Breeze and event organiser Café Culture Magazine. He said, “It is unparalleled in competition that there is such generous prizes. Flying in each state Breezey Masters into Sydney for the final, all being so well looked after and putting up such a great prize with awesome educational value.”

Will also praised Roger Ringwood “It’s admirable that Roger has brought everyone together in an effort to look at how the product can be possibly improved. Will didn’t expect to win and hadn’t competed for a few years prior to getting involved in the state heat in Tasmania.

Head Judge of the competition Tony Macri of Coffee Brothers said that “The Breezey Masters reminded me of a grand slam tournament where we have the best of best, compared to local events, this had the feel of a true national competition bringing in competitors from every state to Sydney at Circular Quays Espresso Room. I said this a few times during the night of comp “the level of latte Art with Almond milk was exceptional” I have seen latte art made all over the world but the Breezy Masters was up the with the best. As was the flavours of espresso pushing through the Almond Breeze Barista milk. Congratulations to all that competed, it was a real pleasure to Judge!“

Congratulations Will Priestley on becoming the inaugural Grand Breezey Master. Enjoy the prize and kudos that comes along with this title.

We will soon announce details relating to the Almond Breeze Breezey Masters 2017.


  • to the esteemed judging panel – Tony Macri of Coffee Brothers, Spiro Bellas of Davinci Gourmet, Frankie Shi of Tulip Shi Specialty Coffee, Jonathon Goldthorpe of Grinders Coffee, Ernest Igual of Panorama Coffee and Andy Liu of Essence Foods
  • Roger Ringwood, Blue Diamond / Almond Breeze and Renee Rogers & Angelo De Blasio of Freedom Foods for supporting this inaugural initiative and developing a great performing product that fits the needs of the café industry
  • Meg Loudon of Coffee Brothers on all the fantastic Facebook LIVE footage
  • to Michael Rose for hosting the Grand Breezey Masters event and to each of the businesses that have been part of the journey in hosting the state competitions – Eva’s Botanical Gardens Café (NT), Extraction Artisan Roasters (QLD), Rio Coffee (SA), Rocks Aroma Fest (NSW), Pilgrim Coffee (TAS), Maillard Aletier (VIC North Bridge Roasters (WA) & Espresso Room (ACT).

For more information and details contact Cafe Culture International email – or 02 6583 7163


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