– What’s your story in the coffee industry?
My story in the coffee industry is one of a hospitality background. I am not and never have been a specialty barista, but I used to make coffee as a part of service. It is since opening Kaffeine in 2009 that I would say our story in this specific industry began.
– When did Kaffeine open and what is the story behind?
Kaffeine opened the first store in August 2009, and we opened our second store in March 2015. I had lived in the UK from 1995 to 1998 and then returned to Melbourne where I got married and started to settle down. But then I returned with my wife to London on 2005 and we identified what we perceived to be an opportunity to open a Melbourne style café in London.
It took two years of planning years and the decision to stay in the UK.
– What’s your specialty and what makes you different?
I would say our specialty, or our focus, is genuine hospitality and service. This for us is the tip of the pyramid. All other details lead into this point. Then, in order to get to this point we identify and focus on the small details that make the customer experience seamless, easy and enjoyable.
– What was your first coffee experience?
My first coffee experience was probably drinking bad black filter with my parents in a restaurant. My first espresso experience was in Hospitality College at the age of 19, when the lecturer said, ‘okay, lets; go make coffee’ in the College restaurant.
– Do you prepare coffee at home? If yes, what method do you use?
I prepare coffee at home using a V60, aeropress or French press. I only make one or two coffee per week though. On the day off, as a part of our family breakfasts.
– How do you like your coffee? Black, sugar and milk, iced, Vietnamese style… ?
I like my coffee as either a double espresso, flat white (5oz cup), long black (5 oz. cup) or black filter.
– Have you always been into the coffee industry? If not, what was your previous job?
I have always worked in the Hospitality industry from bar man, to cocktail bars, to waiter, management, trainer and teachers, recruitment and staffing. Prior to Kaffeine I was employed for four years at Marylebone Cricket Club at Lords Cricket Ground.
– Do you have another passion or a hobby besides coffee?
My main interest is my family. They come before any other interests.
– What other place would you recommend, anywhere in the world (coffee or not)?
So many places to recommend in the world, but overall I would recommend London and Melbourne. Two of the best cities ever.
– What is/are your favorite website(s) to get information about coffee?
My favourite website is Sprudge.
– What would you say to people who don’t know much about coffee?
To people who may not know too much about coffee, as with anything, is to be open to the possibilities and to explore and enjoy.