Name: Constantine Felin U. Urquia
Cafe: Costa Coffee Sahara Club
Q: Why did you become a barista?
One of my mentors is my father who worked in the hotel industry for 36 years and encouraged me to explore opportunities in this field. He pointed me in the right direction to explore the possibilities.
Q: Where were you before you came to Kuwait?
Before coming to Kuwait, I worked as a barista in Qatar for 2 years from 2012 to 2014.
Q: When did you first experiment with Latte Art?
In my previous workplace in Qatar, all of the baristas there are latte artists. I came from a coffee shop where we just prepped coffees in a paper cup, directly covering it, and serving to the guests. Out of curiosity, I decided to try it myself. I worked at pulling the action away from the back of the cup, sneaking milk down the sides to form swirls and hoping white foam would appear as a heart at the center. I repeated this until I perfected the heart latte art. A good friend of mine advised me to watch videos online to learn more, which I did and this helped me a lot to achieve unique latte art designs.
Q: What motivated you to compete for the title of Costa’s World Champion of Latte Art?
Keeping the dream alive! I believe that achieving anything requires faith and belief in yourself, vision, hard work, determination, and dedication.
Q: Tell us more about the competition for Costa’s World Champion of Latte Art of 2016.
The Costa Coffee Barista of the Year 2016 Latte Art Championship highlights artistic expression in a competition platform that challenges the barista in an on-demand performance. For the preliminary round of the championship, baristas would produce a single creative latte art to send as an online entry. Respective judges from UK choose 6 who would advance in the Semi- Finals. Entries will be posted on social media ready for our customers and teams to vote for their favorite. The votes cast by our customers and teams will be added up once voting closes and the top 3 will be invited to attend the Champion of Champions World Final in January 2017!
Q: When you’re not making latte art, what do you do for fun?
I usually play online multiplayer computer games with my friends in the Philippines and abroad after work or my day off. Sometimes you will see me playing basketball around Marina Mall’s basketball court.
Q: What’s your favorite treat to have with your coffee?
There is nothing better than a good friend, great conversation and a hot cup of coffee. No need for treats!
My Breakfast: Double Ristretto with cold milk
My Equipment: Group Handles
Most overused ingredient: Milk
Favorite Coffee Gadget: Steaming Jug
Favorite Food Aroma: The smell of a freshly made Café Americano