Coffee, tea or art?

Latte artiste Ben Morrow from Melbourne shares the recipes of award-winning coffee concoctions 61 and Liquid Christmas 

You have seen coffee art at city cafés, the infamous maple leaf, smiley or a heart of froth. But, to see latte artist Ben Morrow use a coffee cup as his canvas is something else. All the 26-year-old from Melbourne, who is in the city for a Tourism Victoria event, needs is a cup of freshly brewed coffee, a cup of milk and a skewer.

Ben Morrow
Ben Morrow

“There are two types of coffee art — free pour, where you don’t need any other tool except a jug of coffee and milk, and etching, which is building a pattern using a skewer,” Morrow, explains, as he pours milk into a cup of black coffee to form a freestyle pattern.

It’s easy to try coffee art at home, too. “It is all about pouring milk and balancing the surface tension. You need an expresso machine, good milk and Internet, where artists from all over the world share their styles,” says Marrow, who pours milk into a cup and uses a skewer to create a design. He makes an eagle, a cricket ball, a hot-air balloon and two penguins. This year, raspberry reduction and coffee is a trending combination, explains Marrow, who won the third place in the World Coffee Masters and second in the Australian Latte Art Championships in 2015.

Ask him how much time he takes per cup, and he says, “While the shortest time for a coffee art takes 30 seconds, my longest and most challenging work takes two-and-a-half minutes.”

Follow his art on Instagram at ben_morrow



>> 200 gm Dargeeling tea
>> 50 gm maple syrup
>> 200 gm chilled filter coffee
>> 2 rose petals

>> Mix tea and maple syrup. Add a few ice cubes to the mixture to chill it
>> Mix 60 gm coffee and 50 gm of tea solution in a chilled cup
>> Garnish with rose petals

Liquid Christmas Cake

Liquid Christmas Cake
Winner of World Coffee and Good Spirits championship 2014

>> 3 parts rum, 2 parts muscat liquor
>> 1 part grand marnier (or cointreau)
>> Icing sugar for garnish
>> 1 tbsp butter
>> 1 expresso coffee
>> A pinch of cinnamon

>> Mix a tbsp of butter per litre into the liquors  
>> Boil it on a steam wand and light on fire (while still boiling) for 15 seconds per 250 ml
>> Mix 1:1 with expresso
>> For icing on rim of glass, five parts sugar, 1 part milk mixed with a pinch of cinnamon  

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