– Can you please introduce yourself in a few words.
My Grandparents emigrated from Belgium to Argentina when they were around 13 years old. I was born in Argentina as the older brother of 4 boys. Came back with my family to Belgium when I was 13 years old in search for a better future. Well… We found it!

– What’s your story in the coffee industry?
After finishing college my girlfriend and I decided to take a short trip to New Zealand. That trip went on for a year and a half. There we both worked as baristas and fell in love with the profession, never knowing that we’d get so involved in it! Once back in Belgium I had the opportunity to become a barista at Viva Sara Kortrijk and now I own my own coffee bar in the same city.

– When did deDingen open and what is the story behind?
Brecht Soenen started deDingen 8 years ago as a bar where EVERYTHING was for sale. Now we’re a specialty coffee bar with brunch/lunch, bar and (soon) also brewery. deDingen is one of those places that you fall in love with or you never come back again! ????

– What’s your specialty and what makes you different?
I love the romance behind every cup of coffee. It doesn’t need to be perfect as long as the customer enjoys the experience.

– What was your first coffee experience?
I loved my Senseo during college! But my first experience was very similar to everyone else I guess. Having a sip from mom’s coffee and not understanding why they drink that kind of poison! But he! I got used to it now.

– How/when have you discovered about specialty coffee?
New Zealand. So many coffee bars! But after a while you know where to go and before you know !BAM! The Senseo machine at home needs to go!

– What was your best coffee experience?
Little Mermaid coffee bar in Queensland Australia. That was the first time a coffee became a memory.

– Do you prepare coffee at home ? If yes, what method do you use?
I used to practice a lot at home trying to get my V60 perfect and making latte art with Bialetti and frothed milk. Now it’s only a V60 from time to time. Most of the time we spend in the shop anyway.

– How do you like your coffee? Black, sugar and milk, iced, vietnamese style,…?
Flat White in the morning, survive through the day thanks to filter coffee and every once in a while an espresso. But if you pour me a Cold Brew, well that’s a friendship that’d last a life time!

– How would you qualify yourself as coffee drinker (occasional, heavy, addict…)?
Starting to realize that I’m a coffeeholic.

– Have you always been into the coffee industry? If not, what was your previous job?
I’ve worked as many jobs as I could! Always hopping from one work to another… I just like to learn! But now I’ve been in the coffee industry for at least 3 years and there are still many to come (hopefully)!

– Do you have another passion or a hobby besides coffee?
Music. Music.

– What other place would you recommend, anywhere in the world (coffee or not)?
Celia’s Pie Shop in Auckland, New Zealand. That’s where it all started for me. Did a 3 days course and thought I could handle anything! Haha!

– What is/are your favorite website(s) to get information about coffee?
BH. Think they’re doing a great job. Very clear and accessible. Perfect Daily Grind is also one of those websites that I visit a lot.

– What would you say to people who don’t know much about coffee?
Lungo deca with whipped cream? Really?

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Thomas Wyngaard est fondateur de OK Coffee et un des rares experts en Café de Spécialité en Belgique francophone. Il est consultant indépendant, enseignant (certifié par la Specialty Coffee Association de janvier 2018 à avril 2021), tour-ist et broadcaster. Après avoir été formé en France, en Pologne et en Estonie, il fait ses armes chez les meilleurs en Belgique, pour ensuite migrer pendant presque 2 ans à New York où il a officié comme conseiller et formateur. Au-delà de la formation sur les métiers du café, il collabore avec des torréfactions belges engagées sur la reconnaissance du café de spécialité, œuvrant ainsi à un monde meilleur “one bean at a time”.