– Can you please introduce yourself in a few words.
Hey, my name is Talor. I’m a 28 year old Australian living in Norway that ended up here via Paris. I live in Oslo with my husband Andreas and our cat, Sid.

– What’s your story in the coffee industry?
My story within coffee is soooo long but I’ll try to make it interesting. I grew up in a really small town in rural Australia and the best job I could get during highschool was at a franchise called Muffin Break in my local mall. Whilst working there after school, I garnered myself a reputation for being the best at making coffee. After school I started up with the only place roasting their own coffee in my town, Coffee Mamma, gained a ton of extra skills with them and then made the move to Melbourne where I was lucky enough to get on the team at St.Ali whilst it was still owned by Mark Dundon. When he sold the place to Salvatore, he took three out of the team of 18 to the little shop in the city, Brother Baba Budan. That was Toby, Bowen and myself. We carved out a piece of history in those years we worked the bar there.

From then we opened Seven Seeds as a team and then De Clieu. After 4 years with them, I reached an impasse for learning and jumped ship to work for Market Lane. I also started working in the kitchen doing pastry at Duchess of Spotswood. It wasn’t long until Bobby and Andy at Duchess offered me a position to manage the bar there so I took it on full time.

It was then I received a message on facebook from a stranger who turned out to be Antoine Netiene, the owner of Coutume in Paris. He admitted that I had made him a life changing espresso when he lived in Melbourne and that he had dreamed of moving me to Paris to help expand his business. I dropped my entire life and made the move.

It wasn’t long after I started there, I realised that our goals were misaligned and when I ran into Tim Wendelboe in Copenhagen in 2012 and he offered me a job, I packed up my bags in Paris after only 10 months and flew to Oslo and never looked back. After 4 months in Oslo, I started roasting there, being trained by Tim Varney before he moved back to Australia. I completed my Q grader and was promoted to head roaster and also worked briefly as lab manager for Nordic Approach. I also conducted barista training and worked on the drafted the initial copy of the Finca Tamana book.

I left Wendelboe after 3 years at the end of 2015 and am now opening my own roastery here in Oslo, named Talor&Jørgen. I also just started my own doughnut company named Fryd (it means “joy” in Norwegian).

– What’s your specialty and what makes you different?
My specialty is the way that I utilise empathy to facilitate the perfect experience for customers. Its not something easily quantifiable but I tend to make an impression in the short time a customer is in the bar. (sorry if that sounds narcissistic)

– What was your first coffee experience?
The first time I remember drinking coffee was taking the froth off the top of my mum’s cappuccino. I remember there being mountains of it covered in chocolate dust and hating the coffee tasting part of the drink.

– How/when have you discovered about specialty coffee?
I don’t think there was a specific moment that specialty became a “thing” for me, I think the switch came so gently that I didn’t even notice it. The language changed subtly over time, the way we brewed, the way we worked in the bar, the way we spoke to customers… It was an evolution.

– What was your best coffee experience?
My best coffee experience was probably the first time I tasted a coffee and could understand and associate the tasting notes with the coffee itself. I don’t remember the coffee but it was such a profound moment and I was so immensely proud of myself and shocked at how amazing coffee could be.

– Do you prepare coffee at home ? If yes, what method do you use?
I use a wilfa svart presisjon at home. It was a gift to my husband for the first birthday we ever celebrated together. I hate having to think about coffee at home because I do it all day at work. I love just being able to dial it in and have perfectly consistent black coffee.

– How do you like your coffee? Black, sugar and milk, iced, vietnamese style,…?
All coffee is delicious coffee but I usually order an espresso, single cappuccino and a black coffee. I’ll have it iced in the Summer.

– How would you qualify yourself as coffee drinker (occasional, heavy, addict…)?
The older I get, the more I find myself drinking it out of need rather than want. I’d say I have around 2 cups a day. Much more if I am doing QC or dialing in.

– Have you always been into the coffee industry? If not, what was your previous job?
I have literally always done coffee. Although I do bake and write occasionally.

– What other place would you recommend, anywhere in the world (coffee or not)?
My favourite place in the world to recommend would be Bruny Island, just off the coast of Tasmania. You can pick oysters out of the ocean and sit on a completely deserted beach, surrounded by nature. Its a very special place. One of the best days of my life was there.

– What is/are your favorite website(s) to get information about coffee?
Tough question! I like to keep an eye on Sprudge.com and Barista Hustle but I prefer using social media to keep track of relevant articles. There is just so much content out there nowadays, its hard to keep track.

– What would you say to people who don’t know much about coffee?
To someone who doesn’t know much about coffee, I would first try and understand if they wanted to talk about it. Some people are really keen, others couldn’t care less. So I’d check their level of engagement and then try to meet their expectations. I feel we can sometimes get a bit “preachy” in this industry and I just try to keep it real and keep it human.

Thomas
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Thomas

Thomas Wyngaard Founder at OK Coffee, started in the coffee industry at OR Coffee Begium, now Director of Saison Coffee in New York City.