Latte challenge: Customers, can you pour it on?




Vancouver, it’s time to practice making the perfect dragon.

The baristas at River Maiden, inspired in part by a story in The Columbian about latte art, have issued a throw-down to residents of our fair city.

Beat your friends and neighbors by creating the most interesting image in your drink with steamed milk, and you can win gift cards and bragging rights at the company’s two stores, Dripster, at 701 Main St., and River Maiden Coffee House, 602 N. Devine Road.

“Our baristas will pull shots and provide the steamed milk and the customers can pour their own latte art,” said Jake Timmerman, a barista at the Dripster store.

The staff will also offer pointers for those giving it a try for the first time, said Zack Stahl, a manager at Dripster.

“People are paying a lot more attention to latte art here since the article came out,” Stahl said. “I’ve heard a lot of people say they want to try it.”

Requests for unusual drawings have also increased at the store, with several customers asking Stahl — mostly in jest — to pour an octopus, which is an image he says is just far too difficult.

“I had a girl come in recently and ask for a shark — now that’s pretty much impossible,” Stahl added.

The contest will run through the month of July, with winners announced in early August.

Pictures of customers’ efforts will be posted on the company’s Facebook pages at and, and customers who “friend” the company on those pages will be able to vote for their favorites.

Prizes in the “So you think you can pour?” contest include two $20 gift cards for the best art — one chosen by the baristas and one chosen by Facebook fans — and three $10 gift cards in the categories of most improved, never say die, and best interpretation.