Please tell us a little bit about yourself:
I’ve worked at MOMOS COFFEE, as a barista and a trainer for 11 years. I enjoy sharing good coffee culture with younger baristas as a teacher. I’ve participated in the Korea National Barista Championship 7 times in the last 10 years—finally, I am on the WBC stage as representing Korean National Barista Champion.
What are you excited to do while you are in Amsterdam?:
Above all, the thing I’m looking forward to most in Amsterdam is to be on the WBC stage. It’s been my dream for a long long time since I started my job.
Please list the coffee competitions you have participated in, what year they took place, and your results:
2018 Korea National Barista Championship – 1st Place
2015 Korea National Barista Championship – 3rd Place
2014 Korea National Barista Championship – 2nd Place
2014 Fushan Cup International Barista Championship – 3rd Place
2013 Korea National Barista Championship – 2nd Place
2013 World Roaster & Barista Championship Barista Award – 2nd Place
2011 Korea National Barista Championship – Semi-finalist
2010 Korea National Barista Championship – Semi-finalist
2009 Korea National Barista Championship – Semi-finalist
Is there anyone you would like to thank or recognize, or who helped you to prepare for the WBC?:
First of all, I would like to thank Hyunki, our boss in MOMOS COFFEE. He has always been my biggest supporter for the last 10 years, since I started as a barista. I want to thank Jeongsoo, my colleague and coach in Korea. Team MOMOS also gives great encouragement to me as I prepare for WBC. And I would say thank you to Federico who have taught me so enthusiastically for my perfect presentation.
How do you see the coffee industry changing in the future?:
I think the coffee industry will continue to be divided into two segments for a while. This phenomenon will affect not only coffee producing countries but also coffee consuming countries. For the former, the market will require them to draw more attention to coffee farms, to have higher cultivation control (terroir, fertilizer, etc.), and also to increase production capacity. In consuming countries, automatic coffee machines will gradually change the market situation—eventually lowering labor costs but giving great quality, so that customer will increasingly choose them. On the other hand, there is will be more demand for specialty coffee, which will require higher barista expertise and service. We will soon see many specialty coffee bars around the world which will be very similar to fine dining restaurants. It might cause a little confusion of our industry for a while. However it will also bring new opportunities for all of us.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?:
As always, I will still be making coffee and sharing the moment with those who love it. I hope I keep up the basics in everything I do, and continue to have a lot of passion.
What are your interests outside of coffee?:
I’ve become interested in travel recently. It has become my hobby to find travel information, photos of beautiful places and collect lovely goods to have a good time while travelling.