Malaysian Barista Wins World Latte Art Battle With A Design That Took Months To Perfect

Quek dropped out of high school five years ago to pursue his passion.

Cover image via Instagram @irvine_nj

Malaysian barista Irvine Quek Siew Lhek has bagged first place in the 2019 World Latte Art Battle (WLAB) that was held in Seoul, South Korea

According to Malay Mail, the 21-year-old defeated Kim Young Jin from South Korea by 10 points with a score of 73 at the competition organised by World Coffee Battle over the weekend, 9 to 11 November.

Image via Malay Mail

This is Quek's second year in a row winning the title

Last year, he bagged the 2018 World Latte Art Championship (WLAC) organised by World Coffee Events in Brazil.

"Get the world champion title in a same day, but different year. After 365 days, I'm back to the stage again (sic)," he wrote in a Instagram post.

"It was a very tough time for me and full of stress in the period of preparation. Glad that I made it and I feel so happy. To all the people who supported me, I'm happy that I didn't disappoint you all."

"Feel honoured to be with the best of the best on the same stage. You guys are awesome and you guys are always my inspiration," he added, addressing his competitors.

Quek showed off his winning latte art design titled 'Bear N Fish' on his Instagram account

In the caption he wrote that he spent "almost three months to develop just one pattern" for the first time.

"Tried to perfect every single detail of this pattern and to make it more realistic and impactful," he wrote.

The 21-year-old has been a barista for five years after he dropped out of high school to pursue his passion

According to Coffee t&i Magazine, he has since established a latte art education institute at 103 Coffee Workshop in Sri Petaling, Kuala Lumpur, given multiple workshops overseas, and joined more competitions internationally not only as a contestant, but also as a coach and judge.

He has even launched his own brand of milk pitchers called 'Nasty Jug'.

"Gonna keep the fire going for my up coming weeks after my intense competition in Seoul," Quek - who is currently in Shanghai promoting a coffee machine - wrote in his latest Instagram post.

"What I would like to say is no matter how tired I am for travelling around to share my skills and my knowledge, I'm happy and I hope I could share more and meet more baristas who love doing the thing that I love to do."

Way to go, Quek!

Image via GIPHY

Malaysians all over the world have been making us proud with their achievements:

More stories to read: