Independent brewer and pharmaceutical worker Katie Holman wins 2022 Northern Region Brewers Cup Championship

Northern Region Brewers Cup Championship

The Brisbane-based sensory and brewing “free agent” and employee of a small radio pharmaceutical company monitoring new applications of cancer treatment, is this year’s 2022 Northern Region Brewers Cup Champion.

“The competition was close,” says Katie. “I feel totally humbled by [the win] and I feel extremely lucky. I entered out of inspiration by watching so many brewers and I love being a part of the Brisbane coffee community, it’s amazing. I know I have to turn it up for nationals which excites me.”

Dale Pollard of Grinders Coffee placed second and Carlo Junior of Ona Coffee placed third in the competition, held at Archer Specialty Coffee in Chermside, Queensland from 23 to 24 April.

In the competition Katie used a Colombian natural Castillo varietal, produced by Jose Ferely Rodriguez as part of the Delagau project and sourced through Zest Specialty Coffee and FTA.

“Castillos are often overlooked but can score 90 points or over. This was one of them. Nothing fancy done to it, just meticulously produced with sustainable practices,” Katie says.

“I felt I had something to bring this year [to the competition], and this coffee was it.”

The theme for Katie’s routine was “legacy”, which she says is achievable for coffees when they are sustainably produced and deliver excellence.

“It’s up to us to honour and celebrate these coffees,” she says.

The coffee included notes of dark chocolate, red wine, guava and pink grapefruit with a green toffee apple finish.

“It was delicious, and I have five serves left that I plan to share with my coffee family in Brisbane and a sample roast to share with my mum in London,” she says.

To grinder her coffee, Katie used a Comandante grinder with a setting of 32 clicks.

For her winning brew recipe, Katie used a pour over technique with five pours to help layer the flavour of the coffee.

She then used 15 grams of coffee to 240 grams of water at 130 parts per million (ppm) at 93 °C. Her first pour was 45 grams of water before blooming for 45 seconds.

She then poured the remaining water in four intervals of 45/50/50/50 grams at low height, in a circular motion to ensure a clean flavour profile.

Katie used to own an espresso bar in Geelong, Victoria and hopes to one day work in the industry again, in a quality control or research and development role to match her chemistry background.

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