The FINANCIAL -- The presidential candidates weren't the only ones vying to win over
voters at the Iowa State Fair this week. Iowa's top home cooks with
coffee creativity also battled for votes at the fair during the
Seattle’s Best Coffee Red Cup Showdown – a competition at state fairs
across the country and on Facebook to create the most imaginative new
Eileen Gannon of Des Moines won the judges' votes and took home the first place blue ribbon with her coffee drink, "How to Win a Guy with One Sip."
“The Iowa contestants brought some serious coffee competition to our final state fair Showdown," said TV Chef Jeff Mauro. “In the end, Eileen Gannon took home the bacon with her 'How to Win a Guy with One Sip' drink. This eye-opener combined coffee with the unexpected flavors of caramelized bacon and subtle hints of pumpkin pie spice."
Gannon prepared her winning drink in front of a live audience for the Red Cup Showdown judging panel comprised of TV Chef Jeff Mauro, Mary Petersen from the Iowa State Fair and Jeff Chapman of Seattle’s Best Coffee in the Elwell Family Food Center at the Iowa State Fair. Anita Van Gundy from Des Moines came in second place for her “Raspberry White Chocolate Cheesecake” frozen coffee drink and Kenzie Piper of Waukee, Iowa, took home the third place ribbon for her “Busy Mama's Breakfast in a Mug” coffee beverage.
Gannon will travel to New York City to compete in a live coffee-making battle against finalists from the California, Ohio, Wisconsin and Illinois state fairs as well as one Facebook finalist for the $10,000 grand prize and the chance to have their drinks featured at Seattle’s Best Coffee locations nationwide. In addition to a trip to the Big Apple in late August, Gannon received $500 and free coffee for a year.
Iowans can show their support of their hometown winner by participating in public voting on the Seattle’s Best Coffee Facebook page Aug. 18-22. The grand-prize winning coffee drink will be selected based on the vote of the judging panel at the New York finale, as well as Facebook votes.
As Starbucks Corporation reported, this summer, creative cooks from across the country entered their ideas into the Red Cup Showdown by submitting a recipe on the Seattle’s Best Coffee Facebook page or participating in one of the live coffee competitions that Seattle’s Best Coffee is hosting at the California, Ohio, Wisconsin, Illinois and Iowa state fairs.