Some of the signature drinks we saw prepared at the 2010 Australian Barista Championship made us drool. It’s exciting to see creative new ways to enjoy espresso. In honour of the ABC, we thought we’d ask the Five Senses experts for a few recipes you can try at home. Jen, Jeremy, Mark and Caleb have all won their state barista championship in years past, and they’ve put their creations down on paper (so to speak) for your enjoyment. Let us know how you go!

Caleb Podhaczky

Caleb won the 2010 Victorian Barista Championship. He is our head roaster in Victoria. Below is the recipe for the signature drink that Caleb prepared in 2008. It’s a play on the perennially popular sticky date pudding.


  • 4 shots espresso
  • 30g butter
  • 1/6 cup brown sugar
  • 45ml date reduction (I prepared this using 2kg dates, but you may choose to use less!)
  • 20ml date molasses (normal molasses will be fine if you can’t get your hands on date molasses)
  • 30ml thickened cream
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • 1 orange (rind only)

To create my date reduction, I reduced 2kg dates with a little bit of water to make a sticky liquid (but this may be a bit too much for a home barista!). Strain and reserve the liquid.

Melt butter and sugar over a low heat, stirring frequently until the sugar is dissolved and the mixture caramelizes. Add the date reduction and date molasses and let the mixture heat to around 60°.

At the same time, warm the cream, combined with the scrapings of the vanilla bean and a touch of orange rind in a saucepan over low heat. Do not allow the cream mixture to boil.

Extract four espresso shots into glasses, top with the sticky date mixture and then the cream.

This drink is best enjoyed as a shot, so slam it down!

Jen Murray

Jen created a summery signature drink for the 2010 barista championship, inspired by Zach at spring espresso. It’s perfect for the hot months!

Espresso Refresher

(Makes four drinks)

Apricot Reduction

  • 20 apricots
  • 1 cup water
  • ½ cup sugar

Combine apricots and sugar and just put enough water to cover in a small saucepan and simmer on a low heat for an hour, or until thick and syrupy. Strain the mixture and reserve the liquid.

Grape and Lychee Reduction

  • 100g purple grapes
  • 100g lychee
  • ½ cup water
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • Slice of lime
  • Shot of espresso

Combine fresh grapes, lychee, water and sugar in a saucepan and bring to the boil over high heat. Boil for five minutes. Strain and pour 60mls of this mixture into a cocktail shaker. Place the cocktail shaker into an ice bath to cool. Add 60mls of the reserved apricot liquid. Once the grape mixture is cool, add a handful of ice and shake well.

To serve

Rim a glass with lime, then pour the grape, lychee and apricot mixture into the glass, top with a shot of espresso and a couple of ice cubes.

Voila — cold, balanced, refreshing espresso!!

Thanks to Zach at Spring Espresso for the inspiration.

Jen created an amazing three-tiered concoction to win the 2008 WA Barista Championship: warmed maple syrup fresh lavender, topped with a pear and fig reduction, finished with a layer of espresso. The hard part, says Jen, is ensuring that each part is the right temperature at the right time.


  • Approximately 10mls maple syrup
  • A couple of fresh lavender sprigs (make sure they haven’t been sprayed with any chemicals!)
  • 1 pear, peeled and sliced
  • 2 figs, sliced
  • 1 cup water
  • Shot of espresso


Place pear, figs and water in a saucepan and bring to the boil, reduce heat and simmer until thick. You will need around 20mls of this mixture.

In a second saucepan, pour the maple syrup over the lavender and heat over a low flame. Keep a close eye on this saucepan, as the maple syrup will go crazy and boil over before you know it if the heat is up too high! This mixture will become very hot, so test the temperature carefully before you pour it into a glass for serving.

When your two mixtures have cooled a little, to drinking temperature, pull an espresso shot. To serve, pour the pear and fig reduction into a glass, top with the maple and lavender syrup and pour the espresso over.

Mark Chandler

Mark was crowned WA Barista Champion in both 2009 and 2010. His winning signature drink in 2010 was espresso with a strawberry and tomato nage with watermelon and peache, served with a saffron and thyme infused vanilla cream. Mark recommends using a fruity coffee with this recipe. Try the Ethiopian – Yirgacheffe or the Ethiopian – Harrar.

Strawberry and Tomato Nage with Watermelon and Peaches, served with a Saffron and Thyme Infused Vanilla Cream

(Makes four sets of drinks)

Strawberry and Tomato Nage

  • 50g strawberries
  • 50g grape tomatoes
  • 100g seedless watermelon
  • 50g peaches (tinned)
  • 50g peaches (fresh) Note: I used fresh peaches on top of the tinned peaches to impress the judges, but you could use 100g tinned peaches and skip the fresh peaches if you prefer
  • 40g peach syrup (from the tin)
  • Pinch salt

Note: I used a Thermomix, but the recipe will work just as well using an old fashioned saucepan! You may need to adjust cooking times to suit.

Combine all ingredients in thermomix (or saucepan) and reduce for 6 minutes at 100°C on Speed 2. (If using a saucepan, heat and reduce, while stirring.) Pass nage through a sieve into a pouring jug.

Saffron and Thyme Infused Cream

  • 150ml thickened cream
  • 4g palm sugar
  • 1 vanilla bean
  • Pinch saffron
  • Small bunch thyme

Combine all ingredients in thermomix (or saucepan) and infuse for 6 minutes at 90 °C on Speed 1. (If using a saucepan, combine all ingredients and heat gently to infuse, stirring. Do not allow the mixture to boil.) Pass infused cream through a sieve into a pouring jug.

To serve

Pour the nage, the infused cream and a shot of espresso into separate shot glasses. Take small sips of the espresso, then the cream, then the nage.

Below is Mark’s winning 2009 signature drink — Spiced Blueberry Pannacotta with a Herb Infused Foam. Again, a fruity coffee would complement the recipe.



  • 80ml milk
  • 150ml thickened cream
  • 25g castor sugar
  • ½ vanilla bean
  • 1.5 teaspoons gelatine

Blueberry Reduction

  • 500g blueberries (frozen are fine)
  • 250ml water
  • 20g Demerara sugar
  • 4 star anise
  • 2 cinnamon quills


Combine all of the blueberry reduction ingredients in a pan, simmer until heavily reduced. (I like it really thick, so reduce right down and, if possible, leave it in the fridge overnight, as this allows the flavours to continue to develop and intensify.) Remove cinnamon quills and as many star anise as possible, puree and pass through a fine sieve.

Combine 100mls of blueberry reduction and all of the pannacotta ingredients in a medium saucepan. Heat on a medium heat and whisk continuously until the sugar and gelatine dissolve. Pour into a jug.

Herb Infused Foam

  • 1 small sprig lemon thyme
  • 2 medium sage leaves
  • 1 small sprig rosemary
  • 2 medium bay leaves
  • 250ml milk

Dip herbs into hot water, then place in a small saucepan along with the milk. Heat over a slow heat (not allowing the milk to boil) until the herbs have infused (approximately five minutes or so). Pass infusion into a cream canister and charge with one bulb.

To put it all together, place a small amount of the blueberry reduction in the bottom of a tall glass. Place the glass into an ice bath until the pannacotta has set sufficiently. Layer espresso directly on top of the pannacotta. Top with herb infused foam, using a cream canister.

Jeremy Hulsdunk

Jeremy was Western Australia’s inaugural Barista Champion in 2006, was runner up Barista Champion in 2010, and won the 2010 WA Latte Art and Cup Tasting Championships. Jeremy manages the WA Barista Academy. Below are a couple of Jeremy’s previous signature drinks.

The Pancake

(Makes one drink)

Jeremy notes that this recipe accents the different taste balances within coffee. The lemon complements the acidity, the maple syrup complements the sweetness, and cream complements the body, to create a balanced drink. He suggests trying a blend such as Harvest with this recipe.


  • Lemon
  • Sugar
  • 15ml maple syrup
  • Shot of espresso
  • 15ml or so thickened cream
  • Icing sugar
  • Cinnamon


Run a piece of cut lemon around the lip of an espresso cup. Dip the cup in sugar to lightly coat the rim. Pour approximately 15ml maple syrup into the cup, add a shot of espresso and a small dollop (around 15ml) thickened cream. Dust lightly with icing sugar and cinnamon. Serve with a spoon for stirring before drinking.

The Tropical Mocha (hot or cold)

(Makes one drink)


  • Milk
  • Shot of espresso
  • 2 teaspoons Chocolate powder
  • 20ml coconut cream
  • Desiccated coconut
  • Vanilla bean ice cream


Combine 2 teaspoons of chocolate powder with the shot of espresso and mix. Add 20ml coconut cream. Add cold milk and a scoop of vanilla bean ice cream. Dust with desiccated coconut and chocolate powder.

Melt 2 teaspoons chocolate powder with a little hot water. Mix a shot of espresso into warm milk and add the melted chocolate. Add 20mls coconut cream and a scoop of vanilla bean icecream. Dust with desiccated coconut and chocolate powder.

Author: Brigette Paterson, Five Senses Coffee

Be the first to know


Simply fill out your details to get the latest coffee news direct from us.