October 12, 2023

Here’s what’s happening at HostMilano 2023


Every two years, HostMilano – one of the world’s biggest business-to-business hospitality trade shows – takes place in Milan, Italy. The 2023 event, which will run from 13 to 17 October, will take place at the Fiera Milano exhibition and trade centre.

The 43rd edition of the expo will showcase the latest innovations in technology and product development in the global coffee and HoReCa industries. In addition to its extensive exhibition, HostMilano will also hold several coffee competitions and awards ceremonies.

Tens of thousands of visitors are expected to attend this year, with more than 2,000 companies exhibiting at the event – making it one of the most important in the global hospitality industry.

Read on to find out more about what’s happening at HostMilano 2023.

Check out the PDG Events Calendar here.

Three styles of latte art on display.

Coffee competitions & awards at HostMilano

HostMilano is one of the most influential and impactful B2B trade shows in the global HoReCa sector. Following the easing of pandemic restrictions, the 2021 event saw a record number of attendees with over 110,000 visitors and 1,345 companies present from across 144 countries. 

The expo is open to brands and companies in many food and beverage sectors, including:

  • Coffee
  • Tea
  • Chocolate and cacao
  • Bars and restaurants
  • Bakeries and patisseries
  • Pizza
  • Pasta
  • Gelato
  • Vending machines
  • Foodservice equipment

Every HostMilano trade show takes place in Milan, Italy – a city widely considered to be one of the design and fashion capitals of the world. Milan also hosted World of Coffee – another industry-leading event – in 2022. 

Alongside an expansive HoReCa exhibition, several competitions are also held at every HostMilano event. The 2021 expo hosted the 2021 World Brewers Cup, World Cup Tasters Championship, and World Barista Championship – with a Colombian competitor crowned the World Barista Champion for the first time.

Espresso Italiano Champion 2023

The Italian Espresso Institute will host this year’s Espresso Italiano Champion contest at stands V21 and Z22 in hall 24P from 13 to 17 October. International coffee professionals will compete to prepare espressos and cappuccinos to a panel of sensory and technical judges, and must also deliver a presentation.

Competitors will use the Rancilio Specialty RS1 espresso machine and Eureka Helios and Atom grinders.

World Latte Art Grading System Championship 2023

This year’s World Latte Art Grading System Championship will take place on 16 October at stands V57 & Z58 in hall 22. Held in more than 50 countries, the competition assesses baristas’ technical latte art skills, as well as their creativity and flair. 

The championship has six levels (or grades), with each one corresponding to specific skills baristas must demonstrate to receive an award:

  • White
  • Orange
  • Green
  • Red
  • Black
  • Gold

Although any coffee professional can apply to take part in the World Latte Art Grading System Championship, competitors must know how to extract espresso, steam milk, and pour latte art.

Participants who pass the championship receive a graded Latte Art Grading Certificate – as well as a milk jug in the corresponding colour. Certified competitors are also listed in an online directory.

Gran Premio Delle Caffetteria Italiana 2023 competition

Founded in 2009, the 2023 Gran Premio Delle Caffetteria Italiana competition will take place on 14 October at stands V57 & Z58 in hall 22. 

Competitors will have 13 minutes to prepare two cappuccinos, two espressos, and two cold coffee drinks which contain traditional Italian ingredients. Eight baristas will proceed to the finals to compete for the title of 2023 Best Italian Maestro del Caffé.

Milano Latte Art Challenge 2023

The fourth edition of the Milano Latte Art Challenge will take place from 14 to 16 October at stand N23 in hall 14. Twelve competitors will take part in nine rounds using the Rancilio Specialty RS1 espresso machine. The challenges range in difficulty, from pouring simple latte art patterns to more complex designs.

The judges’ panel will also include several World Latte Art Champions.

Moka Challenge 2023

The second Moka Challenge will be held at stands V57 & Z58 in hall 22 on 17 October – and is open to anyone interested in taking part. 

Competitors will have ten minutes to brew and serve coffee in a three-cup moka pot – with finalists vying to win the title of best brewer of the traditional Italian coffee pot.

Smart Label Host Innovation Award 2023

As well as competitions, HostMilano also includes several awards schemes – including the Smart Label Host Innovation Awards.

The awards scheme recognises excellence in product innovation in the HoReCa sectors, including coffee. This year’s awards ceremony will be held at stands A44, B43, B49 & B50 in hall 6 – celebrating and honouring global leaders in their respective sectors. 

Categories included in the awards programme are functionality, technology, product performance, and social and environmental sustainability.

Smart Label Host Innovation Award 2023 winners include:

  • Latte Art Factory Bar Pro
  • Pietro grinder
  • Wacaco Company’s Minipresso NS2
  • Franke Mytico
  • Simonelli’s Eagle Tempo
Visitors at HostMilano in Milan, Italy

Who’s exhibiting and attending this year’s event?

More than 2,000 exhibitors are expected to attend this year’s HostMilano, including leading companies from over 50 countries such as Italy, Germany, Spain, France, the US, Switzerland, the Netherlands, Portugal, Turkey, and China. 

Brands from the coffee, tea, bakery, professional catering, pizza, gelato, and tableware sectors will showcase their products to thousands of visitors.

The Flo-Smart device pouring milk for a barista.

Automated beverage solutions

Many of the coffee industry’s most innovative equipment manufacturers and distributors will be at HostMilano. This includes Flo-Smart – a manufacturer of automated beverage and milk dispensing solutions.

Keelan Hartnett is the Managing Director at Flo-Smart.

“Manual milk preparation can cost businesses a significant amount of time and money,” he says. “The sometimes slow and inaccurate process of pouring milk by hand only adds to baristas’ movements, and can also increase milk waste.

“Flo-Smart is designed to transform milk preparation to be more precise and efficient,” he adds.

At HostMilano 2023, Flo-Smart will showcase its automated beverage dispenser, which is suitable for any non-carbonated beverage – including different types of milks or pre-made batch brews. With its portion-controlled dispensing system, baristas can prepare and serve drinks at a faster rate. Additionally, coffee shops can also reduce their waste, and therefore save money and time.

Flo-Smart’s system dispenses beverages directly into milk jugs and other vessels from pergals or containers in undercounter fridges. The dispensing machine includes three different functions:

  • Automatic: for automated hands-free dosing based on the size of milk pitchers
  • Semi-automatic: for small, medium, and large pours
  • Manual: for free-flow dispensing

The Flo-Smart also includes a built-in pitcher rinser, which helps to optimise and de-clutter countertop space.

To learn more about Flo-Smart, visit the website and stop by stand M83 in hall 18P at HostMilano.

A barista uses a Carimali coffee machine.

Coffee machine manufacturers

Some of the sector’s leading machine manufacturers will be exhibiting at HostMilano 2023, including pioneering Carimali.

Roberto Gregis is the Marketing Manager at Carimali.

“Designing a booth with interactive experiences to showcase the latest trends in the coffee industry was quite challenging,” he says. “However, it’s allowed us to explore and understand shifting market needs on a much deeper level, as well as Carimali’s current role in the market and its future prospects. 

“We look forward to welcoming visitors to our booth, where they will experience unrivalled super-automatic coffee machine technology,” he adds.

At HostMilano 2023, Carimali will showcase its CARItower coffee station, which serves a range of customised drinks. Considering that coffee is often only one ingredient of several in a beverage (including milk, cocoa, and syrups), serving increasingly personalised drinks which combine multiple ingredients can cater to different consumer taste preferences.

Carimali will also showcase its new SilverAce Power coffee machine, which also serves a range of customised beverages. The SilverAce Power is designed for high-sales locations which serve up to 400 drinks per day. The brand’s new CARIcream milk system can also produce both high-quality hot and cold milk foam, as well as preparing up to five drinks simultaneously – making it ideal for convenience stores, lounges, and quick service restaurants.

To learn more about Carimali, visit the website and stop by stand G23 in hall 24P at HostMilano.

Other companies at HostMilano 2023

Alongside these brands, a number of other specialty coffee companies will exhibit and/or attend the event. These include:

  • Marco
  • Rancilio
  • Gruppo Cimbali
  • IMF
  • Dalla Corte
  • Sanremo
  • Latte Art Factory
  • WMF
  • Bazzara
Brewing coffee in a moka pot.

Other events & activities

In addition to competitions, awards schemes, and an extensive exhibition, other key events will take place at HostMilano 2023.

Coffee Addition

Organised by AICAF, Coffee Addition returns after the 2021 HostMilano expo, where it attracted hundreds of attendees. The unique event will be held at different stands throughout the exhibition.

A personalised seminar will be hosted at each stand, catering to the needs of each individual brand and company on how they can incorporate coffee into their products and services.

Design Talks

The 2023 Design Talks will include several sessions across all five days of the event, with an overarching focus on the wider hospitality industry.

All sessions will be held in Italian, with each seminar having 60 reservation spots.

After parties

Several after parties and events will take place during the 2023 HostMilano. These include Rancilio’s and The Barista League’s Barista Roulette Competition on 14 October at 20:00, which is a private and invite-only event. Eight baristas will go head-to-head in a series of fun competitions, alongside live music, food, and drinks.

Please note that some afterparties and events may also be invite-only, and attendees may need to register beforehand – with some possibly sold out.

Visitors at HostMilano in Milan, Italy

For those attending HostMilano 2023, there are plenty of events and activities to engage with – as well as opportunities to network with other coffee professionals.

If you are taking part in any capacity, make sure to register and book for any events and activities prior to attending. 

To learn more about HostMilano, visit the official website here.

Photo credits: Flo-Smart, Carimali

Perfect Daily Grind

Please note: Flo-Smart and Carimali are sponsors of Perfect Daily Grind.

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