post can be good

The last two days brought nice things in my door. The first was a chemex brewer, courtesy of Jim. A touch late for a christmas present, but apparently shipping such items is an expensive business so all I can say is I’m very grateful. I’ev only brewed one cup so far, a coe from last year’s second harvest, called Buena Vista. I made it after breakfast which I don’t normally do and considering the reminents of weetabix still lingering in my mouth, I’ll hold back from judgement, either of the coffee or the chemex. Plus, I only roasted the coffee yesterday afternoon on the roaster in the Bewley’s cupping room.

The second little package was a set of business cards from moo. I don’t know if business card is the right word considering all they say is I’m a barista and give this blog address. Yet I’ve gotten them before and find them a good way of staying in touch with coffee people without adding a business dimension to a relationship. I’m still grappling with the idea that people actually pay me to do something I enjoy so much. I need to put a small disclaimer here; I am a firm believer that the responsibilty lies on all of us to promote the skill of a barista and get it the decent salary it so warrants, presuming the skill set is actually there. I really feel it’s a bad idea to pay a trainee barista well from the outset, but instead that one should clearly indicate the opportunities available for barista. If their quality improves, so does their pay. Makes sense to me anyway. Anyone feel differently?

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5 thoughts on “post can be good

  1. Stephen – like the term professional barista on your card!

    While I don’t for a moment dispute that you are deserving of the title what warrants people (in general) to grant themselves this designation. What about the thousands of barista who plought their trade with the green coffee giant – could these be termed professional barista? Guess what I am saying is that without clear recognised qualifications it is difficult for the non coffee person to fully recognise what this title means in essence. I have always liked Chris Owens tag line – barista/ceaseless student of coffee.

    Just a thought really!

  2. Good point.
    The modern understanding of barista seems to be encompassing a lot more than just espresso, and I’m not sure if our green friends would fall into that category.

    Barista to me can mean lots of things, an so ultimately I guess we’re left with good baristas and great baristas. The more I think about it the more I resent using the term ‘professional’, as it sort of suggests saying barista isn’t enough.

    I’m thinking now that I’ve never met a professional barman either, although I know they exist.

    I guess I just think of it as something I do or a living, therefore being my profession.

  3. Stephen

    We once talked about this same subject. Well I have started to impliment it into my cafe.

    In short, a barista starting off is told to do well with the company they need to try and hone there skills like most others. But as they increase there skill and knowledge we have rewarded them with incentives at goals reached.

    This being a knew practice I have only seen it in action for a short time and already have a very passionate staff to keep everyone on par. I also believe its the excitment of the art of coffee that motivates in the end.

    Logan

  4. HI Logan,

    I like the sound of your scheme to accredit your barista. Would you be willing to share details of how you rate their knowledge and in turn how you reward them?

    Cheers

    Gary

  5. Hi from Grand Cayman!

    So word is on the street that we have the best coffee on the island. We are trying hard but I think have a long way to go. Sarah is by the way pouring awesome art!!!

    So I hear from a customer that the owner of a competitor says our coffee here is better because “the guy is a barista”. So who’s been making their coffee?

    Anyway, Pro Barista, I like it.

    Let me know when you need a working holiday.

    Paul

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