Taste buds were going wild at the Wisconsin State Fair Red Cup Showdown this weekend during the third Seattle’s Best Coffee Red Cup Showdown tour stop – part of a state fair and Facebook search for the most imaginative new coffee drink. Barbara Strahler’s “Chocolate Razz Treat” was awarded the first place blue-ribbon after four intense heats of blending, frosting and razzle-dazzling amongst fellow Wisconsinites.
TV Chef Jeff Mauro with the Wisconsin State Fair Red Cup Showdown winners. Left to right: 3rd Place Winner Lois Tongard, 2nd Place Winner Beth Campbell, Judge Jeff Mauro, 1st Place Winner Barbara Strahler. (Photo: Business Wire)
“The competitors really put their Wisconsin pride and local flavors front and center in their drinks – from root beer, to locally grown cherries, and cream puffs,” said TV Chef Jeff Mauro. “After tasting 11 different coffee concoctions, Barbara Strahler’s ‘Chocolate Razz Treat’ was the perfect combination of sweet treats with Seattle’s Best Coffee® to take home the blue ribbon.”
Strahler, of Reedsburg, Wis. prepared her coffee drink in front of a huge crowd of fairgoers and the “Red Cup Showdown” Wisconsin State Fair judging panel, including TV Chef Jeff Mauro, 25-year Wisconsin State Fair judge veteran Linda Cooper, and Seattle’s Best Coffee’s Michelle Van Harmelen. Beth Campbell from Belleville, Wis. came in second place for her “Razzle Dazzle Frosted Coffee” and Lois Tongard from Pewaukee, Wis. claimed third place for her “Roll Out the Barrel Iced Coffee.”
Strahler will pack her bags for a trip to the Big Apple to compete in a live coffee-making battle against finalists from the California, Ohio, Illinois and Iowa state fairs as well as one Facebook finalist for the $10,000 grand prize and the chance to have their drink featured at Seattle’s Best Coffee locations nationwide. In addition to a trip to New York City in late August, Strahler received $500 and free Seattle’s Best Coffee for a year.