July 7, 2016

5 Winning Coffee in Good Spirits Championship Performances


The World Coffee in Good Spirits Championship is fun – but it’s also incredibly demanding. Competitors need to have excellent sensory skills as they analyse and combine, not just one complex ingredient, but many: coffee, alcohol, syrups, fruit, and more.

We’ve collected videos of the last five Champions’ winning performances, along with their recipes. Read on to find out what it takes to win this rigorous competition.

SEE ALSO: 5 Winning World Barista Championship Performances

1. Michalis Dimitrakopoulos, Greece

It’s clear that the 2016 World Coffee in Good Spirits Champion, Michalis Dimitrakopoulos of The Underdog, loves what he does. With both of his drinks, he used a natural processed Ninety Plus Ethiopian Tchembe. It’s a sweet coffee with initial strawberry notes, followed by vanilla and jasmine.

The Hot Coffee:

Let me just tell you now that every winner for the last five years opted to make an Irish coffee for their hot drink. Dimitrakopoulos brewed his in a Clever Dripper before adding:

  • 20 ml cane sugar syrup
  • 20 ml Jameson, with cacao and butterscotch notes
  • Cream

The Iced Coffee:

Dimitrakopoulis took inspiration from  sweet and sour cocktails before pulling the Tchembe as an espresso. He then added:

  • Cold brew ice cubes
  • A slice of frozen lemon
  • Rum, with notes of caramel, cloves, and vanilla
  • Home-made Oleo saccharum syrup made with lime
  • Grand Marnier

The final drink had a syrupy mouthfeel and notes of pink grapefruit, vanilla, sweet and sour citrus, and cloves.

2. George Koustoumpardis, Greece

Back in 2015, George Koustoumpardis also won the WCiGS Championship for The Underdog – making their name feel just a little inaccurate. He worked with an Ethiopian Kemgin from Ninety Plus, which he described as having a bright and complex profile with a syrupy mouthfeel and notes of citrus, blueberries, and strawberries.

The Hot Coffee:

Koustoumpardis used a Chemex for his Irish coffee, and then added:

  • Homemade cane sugar syrup
  • Bushmills Black Bush Irish Whiskey – notes of sherry, vanilla, spicy aftertaste
  • Cream

The final drink was sweet, with notes of butterscotch, caramel, vanilla, and sherry.

The Iced Coffee:

Koustoumpardis took his inspiration from coffee beer, but this drink actually features whiskey instead. He used a Kalita to brew his Kemgin and then added:

  • Cold brew ice cubes
  • Irish Dry Stout syrup – notes of chocolate, caramel, malt
  • 17-year-old blended Hibiki whiskey – notes of honey, pineapple, cacao, oak
  • Grand Marnier

The result? Notes of cacao, malt, oak, and pineapple with a medium body and a long and refreshing aftertaste.

3. Matthew Perger, Australia

Matthew Perger represented St. Ali and Sensory Lab when he won the Championship in 2014. He competed with a Brazilian coffee that was sweet, rich, and chocolatey.

The Hot Coffee

An Irish coffee made with a grand total of three espressos, filtered so as to avoid having crema, this drink will definitely wake you up. Perger added:

  • Water
  • Treacle
  • An Irish-Scotch blend of whiskeys
  • Organic cream

This combines to make one heavy, rich Irish coffee.

The Iced Coffee

Perger’s labelled this one Liquid Christmas Cake, and when you take a look at the ingredients, you’ll understand why. It features one espresso shot and:

  • Grand Marnier
  • Muscat
  • Rum that was infused with butter when hot
  • Cinnamon glaze

Perger then caramelised it all with a blowtorch to remove some of the alcohol and allow the flavours to shine. The final result is a sweet, tart drink that looks, smells, and even feels – thanks to the stickiness – like a Christmas cake.

4. Victor Delpierre, France

Victor Delpierre, an independent competitor, became the World Coffee in Good Spirits Champion in 2013. He opted to use different coffees for his drinks.

The Hot Coffee

Delpierre used a natural Ethiopian-Brazilian coffee to make an Americano, before adding:

  • Kilbeggan Irish Whiskey with fruity notes
  • Agave syrup with caramel notes
  • 40% full fat cream

The final drink had a taste of caramelised pineapple.

The Iced Coffee

Delpierre choose to use a coffee from the Dominican Republic, with fruity notes to give his cigar-themed cocktail the perfect balance. He added:

  • Rum, with honey sweetness and intense tobacco notes
  • Homemade syrup infused with tobacco
  • Grand Marnier

The result? A smokey – in more ways than one – drink reminiscent of cognac.

5. Akos Orosz, Hungary

Akos won the trophy for Hungary in 2012.

The Hot Coffee:

For his Irish coffee, Akos Orosz opted for a Honduran coffee with a light body that allows the whiskey to shine through. Interestingly, he also chose to brew it in a syphon. He added:

  • Redbreast Irish Whiskey
  • Light muscovado sugar

The Iced Coffee:

For this drink, Orosz pulled espresso shots of a Rwandan coffee with high acidity. He combined it with sweet ingredients:

  • Lychee
  • Lemongrass syrup
  • Palinka, a fruity Hungarian spirit
  • Grand Marnier

SEE ALSO: 3 Winning World Latte Art Championship Performances 

Feature photo credit: Jameson

Please note: Perfect Daily Grind does not own the rights to these videos and cannot be held accountable for their content.