What’s your name and What did you do prior to coffee?
My name is Bartosz Kozlowski. Before getting into the coffee industry I worked in a wide range of businesses within the hospitality such as the restaurants, bars, takeaways etc. while educating myself and working closely as a board member with a charity organization – Genealogical Society of Ireland as the Director of Internet Services.
When and how did you first get into Coffee?
In 2013 I started working at the Insomnia Coffee Co. I noticed once during the break that they are a member of SCAE, which I knew nothing about. After some researches done, I wanted to participate in the Irish Barista Championship. Having a lot of enthusiasm but only 4 weeks to go and a very little guidance I ended up not ready to perform, but yet I had enough time to play with many different beans exploring the potential of specialty coffee industry and simply falling in love with the coffee.
How did you get involved in SCA?
I wanted to educate myself more about the coffee and its many aspects, therefore I had obtained the courses since 2014 that gave me a great opportunity to meet other passionate people and be a part of the events such as Barista Camp 2016 in Estonia, where I worked as a volunteer with Vinni Arruda. Now I am waiting to attend AST course next year.
What encouraged you to become an ambassador and what area do you cover?
I strongly believe that as an ambassador I would be able to reach outside the specialty coffee community to educate other baristas and coffee people who yet did not hear about the SCA. I do believe there are thousands of people who work in the coffee industry but never had a chance, opportunity or courage to come across the good cup of Joe. Creating a space for newcomers, encouraging them or even reaching out to them, offering advice, education or participation at some events will provoke the discussion and this might be a chance for us to reach the ‘not-so-good-coffee’ part of our industry and improve it, make it great! My dream is to be able to stop thinking about where I can get a decent cup of coffee only because it will be around every corner in Dublin. I would cover the education area, training, up-skilling, customer service etc.
Where do you see the chapter going with your involvement?
I do see the Irish SCA to be a different, very welcoming organization being able to see the ‘bad-coffee-place’ as the opportunity to make it better rather than the elite that cares mostly about the places that are involved into specialty coffee industry or its parts for many years already anyway. The place full of education, discussion, and diversity. The place where two coffee shops will be able to work together towards bigger cause rather than being just a competition one to another.
Why would you encourage people to become members of SCA?
Because it is the only sustainable way to learn the best standards and practices in the coffee industry, it allows you to connect with many passionate peers throughout the world who are happy to help and educate others.
What coffee are you currently drinking and how is it brewed?
Washed Colombia, Castillo – I brew it as the espresso in the coffee shop where I have a pleasure to work – Project Black in Ranelagh.