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Coffee changed my life

By Vision Reporter

Added 26th November 2009 03:00 AM

I was a waiter at Mama Mia Pizzeria when I got to operate the espresso machine. I picked interest in coffee, did research and later went for training in Mbale with Uganda Coffee Development Authority.

Roberts Mbabazi, the manager of the Jinja-based Flavours Café, successfully defended his title on November 21 at the 3rd Ugandan National Barista Champions, organised by Uganda Coffee Development Authority and Eastern African Fine Coffees Association. Mathias Mugisha spoke to him about the championships, coffee, and how he has made it.

How did you become a barista?
I was a waiter at Mama Mia Pizzeria when I got to operate the espresso machine. I picked interest in coffee, did research and later went for training in Mbale with Uganda Coffee Development Authority.

I got my certificate and started competing in Eastern African Fine Coffees Association championships.

What do the competitions entail?
Each competitor makes a set of drinks. The first set is an espresso beverage, then cappuccino. You also make a signature drink which defines you. I used dark chocolate.

I selected my ingredients as homage to India, the oldest coffee planting country.
Where did you start from?
Nowhere, but now I am the national champion. When I finished S.6, I did all kinds of odd jobs.

I then went into the catering industry, worked at Blue Africa, Muyenga Club and many other places, but every time I moved on, I made sure I had learnt something. By the time I was at Café Ballet, I was a barista, although not a trained one.

Where can we find your coffee?
Come to Flavour in Jinja town.

Coffee changed my life

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