* There's more to being a barista than working behind the bar and preparing and serving good coffee. Our goal at the cafe is to make the barista a legitimate profession, a profession in which you can be proud to tell your parents that you have chosen to lead the life of a barista. Although because of mainstream culture and still-dominant beliefs, success is still measured by financial standards. When this is factored in, a profession loses its appeal to gain parental approval. This is where passion comes in. Passion cancels out almost every concern, most especially financial concerns. It's where you have to choose between what you love and what you need. I've been receiving the same weekly salary for almost 3 years now. The total of which is just the monthly salary of other jobs. And yet I still believe that I have the best job in the world.
* I hold on to the belief that someday baristas in our country will someday gain as much respect just like any other profession you went to college for. "Barista ka lang" should be replaced by "Wow, barista ka!" For all you baristas out there, let's make this our vision for our beloved profession.
* At the cafe, we train and encourage all our baristas to participate in national competitions. The dedication and work involved in preparing for these events transforms a person from being a food server to a legitimate and proud representative of a craft, a skill, and a profession.
* Last Saturday, we held our first ever Intra-Branch Barista Competition at the cafe. It was also the first barista competition in Los Banos. Only a handful of guests arrived to watch the competition but all five contestants gave their best to put on a show!
* Junior Barista, Ian Soliven, became the first champion of our Barista Competition. He and 2nd place winner, Junior Barista, Joyceann April Damian will represent Cafe Antonio Coffee Corporation at the Philippine Barista Cup this year together with our Senior Barista, Neil Rebua (participant of PBC '10 and GBC '10). We are all very proud of them as we saw the effort they put in preparing for the competition. We would also like to congratulate Junior Baristas. Jegar delos Reys, Francis "Khitz" Contemplacion, and Margret Bonita for putting up a good fight and giving it their all.
* What we do is relatively new. The skills and knowledge we possess regarding the science and art of preparing coffee is still unchartered territory for most people. All the struggles and challenges we face in uplifting our profession makes everything exciting because we'll never really know what great things are in store for us in the future.
* If you're a passionate barista, join our community of Filipino baristas on Facebook. Search: Pinoy Barista