The World Aeropress Championship has to be my favorite coffee competition all year (second only to the World Drunken Brewers Cup, of which Sprudge’s own Kate Beard is the 2014 champ, NBD). It’s come a long way since the three-person inaugural championship in Oslo in 2008. But as the years have progressed, so has the number of entrants and the competition’s legitimacy, slowly turning this party-that’s-also-a-coffee-championship into a coffee-championship-that’s-also-a-party. And according to the World Aeropress Championship website, 2016 is going to be the biggest year yet, with 12 nations making their first-ever appearances at the Big Show happening in Dublin later this year.

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It’s a truly international field of first-timers with some rather surprising rookie countries. Greece and Colombia are both making their first appearances. Greece? Colombia?! You all are like, coffee OG’s. WTF? You better get it together, because Eastern Europe is showing up in force this year, with Romania, Ukraine, and Lithuania all sending their first competitors to join the five returning nations of Russia, Poland, Hungary, Slovakia, and the Czech Republic.

Not to be outdone, the Middle East – whose interest in coffee competitions is experiencing quite the spike in the last few years – is also sending three greenhorns: Saudi Arabia, Iran, and the United Arab Emirates.

Overall, there are shaping up to be around 50 competitors for this year’s World Aeropress Championship, 15-ish more than last year. Check out the WAC website to get a full list of countries and newcomers. And shout out to Wales, Venezeula, Ecuador, and Indonesia for also sending their inaugural competitors. We see you.

Zac Cadwalader is the news editor at Sprudge Media Network.

This story originally ran on SprudgeWire. Read more SprudgeWire here.

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