Golden Bean 2023 Wrap-Up
The Australasian leg of the world's largest coffee roasting competition was a one for the books!
Hi all, what a fun week we had running Golden Bean Australasia 2023. It was such a smart decision to host the competition at Serenity Resort, Diamond Beach NSW. We had some nice weather, and the resort pool was welcomed every day after some massive coffee judging sessions. We judged 1200 coffees this year from around 250 roasters, from all over Australia, New Zealand and Asia. The quality of coffee was exceptional, we saw some of the highest scoring coffees ever rewarded in a Golden Bean competition, with this year’s event seeing a strong representation from many countries including China, New Zealand, Bali, Thailand and of course Australia.
The overall winner was Blacklist Coffee Roasters from Perth and Bali who have won The Golden Bean in the past, so this is a great achievement from Darren Woon and his team. This year’s small chain/franchise went to Espresso Room/ONA Coffee in Canberra, who are also previous chain store winners - congratulations to Michael Rose and the team. The large chain/franchise was awarded to Memory Stay Coffee, China, who roasts for large groups of retail stores. It was nice to see China shining in quality coffee in many categories, and also having some roasters attend this years’ competition.
A big Shout Out to all our sponsors for making the competition a success! It has been a hard road for many of us in the industry in the wake of covid - freight costs, high coffee costs and interest rate rises. I can see some light at the end of the tunnel, and it was nice to have some positive conversations with industry suppliers. Sponsorship is how we keep running industry competitions so please support these companies that make the effort to be involved.
The event had some fun networking sessions, and it was great to see The Alternative Dairy Co bring out the competitive side of roasters with the Golden Hoop Competition, which was a great way to burn off energy after a full day of coffee judging.
As always, Golden Bean receives lots of positive feedback and we actively make small changes to the event to make it fairer and approachable for all to compete. We will be pushing harder to encourage roasters to attend the competition in the future as this was the original catalyst to start Golden Bean - to get Roasters to network and share their skills. I personally keep saying that this event is primarily about the person behind the roastery, not the coffee company, and we need to support the roaster and put them in the spotlight to help grow our industry into the future.
We are very excited for The Golden Bean World series in Melbourne Australia in February 2024, so if you are a past silver or gold medal winner in a Golden Bean please enter in your category.