CCOFFEE to WWOOFING
26 May 2016
Emporio barista and trainer Liz Begley has been with us for exactly two years, and in that period has trained hundreds of aspiring baristas. But it’s time for a new adventure. Liz is heading to the UK and Europe and, in a switch from the usual Kiwi OE, is trading her urban lifestyle for working on organic farms, better known as WWOOFING.
With her boyfriend, musician Hugh (also big into coffee—Hugh works at Maranui Cafe), Liz is heading to England and Scotland, via stopovers in Melbourne and Dubai to visit family, before moving on to the continent, most likely continuing to help out on organic farms. She’ll also, of course, be checking out the coffee wherever she goes.
What have you enjoyed most about working at Emporio?
It’s such a great team! I’ve always felt very well supported here, especially when I was starting out as a trainer and had a fair few nerves. Simon (Maguire) was very patient with me and always made me feel comfortable. It’s been incredible being able to share my love of coffee with all the different people I’ve got to train—from university students wanting to up-skill for a part-time job to our own café clients, and fun corporate team building events. We also train all the barista students from the Cordon Bleu school, many of whom come from overseas, so I’ve loved meeting them.
I also have a bit of a thing for the systems and aesthetics of the coffee business, I’m the one lining up the coffee bags on the shelf!
How did you get into working with coffee?
I first worked in a café when I was still at school, Trio in Palmerston North. I think I badgered them until they gave me a job. That’s where I learnt how to make coffee. When I moved to Wellington to study law at Victoria, I worked at Enigma on Courtenay Place.
What do you think of Emporio’s new look?
It’s exciting to have a freshen up. I like it, it’s more contemporary. I especially like the hints of colour, the pops of red. The red coffee sign in Abel Smith St reminds me of what you’d see in a seedy alleyway or in an American diner. I’m very fond of the Crown Lynn takeout cups; Crown Lynn was around a lot when I was growing up.
Liz’s last day at Emporio is Friday 3 June – have fun Liz, we’ll miss you!