20 Questions with Mel from Germany

20 Questions with Mel from Germany

Release Date: Mar 13, 2018

1. What do you do in the coffee industry?

I’m a coffeepreneur, writing, blogging and talking about coffee, as well as traveling in search for (great) coffee, from seed to cup.

2. How many cups of coffee do you have a day?

When I’m at home about 1-2 cups, when I’m traveling/ café hopping up to 5 or 6.

3. How do you like to take your coffee?

Chemex brewed filter coffee, possibly a Natural, juicy, fruity, a little acidic

4. When did you start blogging?

I started with Instagram in March 2015, opened a tumblr blog in early 2015, also. Opened my current blog (http://melscoffeetravels.com) in early 2017.

5. What’s your blog about?

Mel’s Coffee Travels basically is about coffee and traveling. It’s about exploring local specialty coffee scenes and finding great coffee places wherever you go and discovering your travel destination rather off the known paths, with some sightseeing on the side.

6. What is your favourite cafe in Germany?

That’s a tough question. I spent 6 months in Berlin last year and really liked to spend time at Isla Coffee, because of their zero waste & sustainability concept. They just recently received an award for it. I really loved Happy Baristas, too, because of the signature drinks approach. Whenever I go to Hamburg, I love to stop by Balz & Balz, the siblings really do a great job with coffee AND food!

7. In Japan?

For the location: Counterpart Coffee Gallery in Tokyo. For the experience: Koffee Mameya and Chatei Hato.

8. And in the world?

Ask me again, after I finish my tour through East and South East Asia. Don’t think I can answer that question now.

9. What do you think makes a good barista?

I personally think the barista skills like coffee preparation and such can be learned by everyone and really bring them to a high level, if you’re passionate about it. As for engaging with your customer, great service, paying attention to every aspect that comes with preparing and serving coffee makes a great barista for me.

10. What’s something that you consider bad customer service at a cafe?

Not paying attention. Not being thoughtful about what the customer wants.

11. Maximum number of coffees you’ve had in one single day?

Hm, I learned there’s such thing like a coffee hangover. I had that twice in my life, in London and just recently in Bangkok, I each had about 6 coffees in one day. Not fun.

12. Most expensive cup of coffee you’ve had?

Jamaica Blue Mountain at Café Bach in Tokyo. And a ‘Ninety Plus’ at The Normal in Taipei.

13. Best food that goes with coffee?

Cake! Period! I’m German, we have a tradition of having Kaffee und Kuchen (coffee and cake).

14. What type of coffee set up do you have at home?

I’m a filter coffee drinking person. I have a Chemex, Aeropress, Hario V60, Kalita Wave, French Press, Comandante handgrinder.

15. How do you find out about where to have coffee when you travel?

It’s a mix of searching for coffee blogs and websites that cover local coffee scenes, asking for recommendations on social media and/or people that have visited the city I wanna go to. As well as, once I’m there, asking baristas for their favorite places they themselves like to go to.

16. What’s the best thing about working in the coffee industry?

The specialty coffee community is a small one, so it’s a lot about the community, the people. I feel like, especially through social media, I can be in touch with the whole (coffee) world out there. Exchanging ideas, thoughts, preferences and things.

17. A book about coffee that you’ve read more than once?

There isn’t such thing. But I really like to get updated and inspired by blogs and magazines such as Standart and Sprudge.

18. Who is someone that you admire in the coffee world?

People that have a broader view on the coffee world, seeing different angles besides coffee preparation and coffee roasting, such as Jenn Chen, Andrew Hetzel.

19. Favourite three coffee instagrammers everyone should follow on instagram?

1) @Coffeecakescafe because of her fun approach and creative ideas.
2) Not mainly on coffee, but I love @withthelocals because it does what I love, exploring cities through the eyes of locals.
3) @thecoffeetographer for the stories.

20. Finally, if you weren’t in the coffee industry, what would you be doing?

I honestly don’t know! Coffee was and is the hook for me to live the life I want: taking care of myself first, writing, blogging and talking about coffee and traveling.

Follow Mel via Instagram or Facebook at @melscoffeetravels or on her Blog www.melscoffeetravels.com


Interview by Vaughan @vja
Photography by Nik van der Giesen @nvdg81

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