Top Cup Challenge: Win Money!

Pacific Natural Foods debuted the Top Cup Challenge at Coffee Fest Seattle last fall, and it was a huge hit! If you didn’t get a chance to participate in the Challenge, however, never fear: it’s taking place at Coffee Fest New Jersey, March 5 and 6, and yes, you can win money.

Barista Teresa Judy accepts $600 in cash prizes from Patrick Gabrish of Pacific Natural Foods, at the Top Cup Challenge at Coffee Fest Seattle last September. Applications are now being accepted for contestants to the Top Cup Challenge scheduled for Coffee Fest New Jersey in March.

The competition has two categories: Best Tasting & Most Creative Drink, Hot Beverage and Best Tasting & Most Creative Drink, Cold Beverage. First place ($300) is awarded in each category, along with cash prizes going to the second and third place finishers in each category. Coffee Fest and Pacific Natural Foods will supply contestants with an espresso machine, a grinder, a blender, serving items, Pacific Natural Foods’ Barista Series ® Soy Blenders, Barista Series ® Frappe & Smoothie Bases and other Pacific Natural Foods Non-Dairy Beverages, milk, ice, coffee, Monin Syrups, and whipped cream. Contestants are encouraged to bring any other ingredients and/or glassware they need for their drink.


1) Contestants will be given 15 minutes to prepare their innovative beverage recipes for judging on Friday, March 5, and Saturday, March 6, from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

2) Contestants may compete in both the Hot and Cold Beverage categories.

3) Submissions will be judged on: taste, creativity, and ability to replicate.

4) To qualify, any submission must use Pacific Natural Foods’ Barista Series ® Soy Blenders or Barista Series ® Frappe & Smoothie Base as an ingredient.

5) Contestants waive any rights to photographic images captured at the competition and agree that recipes may be published at a later date by Pacific Natural Foods and/or Coffee Fest.

It’s a really fun competition, and a great opportunity to practice your skill set with soy-based drinks. For an application, email Rachel Tracy at, or just email me at and I’ll shoot one your way. Applications are due by March 1, so get yours in soon!

About Sarah 933 Articles
Sarah Allen (she/her) is co-founder and editor of Barista Magazine, the international trade magazine for coffee professionals. A passionate advocate for baristas, quality, and the coffee community, Sarah has traveled widely to research stories, interact with readers, and present on a variety of topics affecting specialty coffee. She also loves animals, swimming, ice cream, and living in Portland, Oregon.