There will always be a reoccurring theme with “In conversation with” and that’s a basic desire to simply say thank you for being a person who inspires me. But it’s also a great opportunity for me to share our story and tell you how we are involving ourselves in an ever-growing community. To put it more poetically (because I put myself on that god-damn pedestal) its…
Coffee. Creating. Culture.
I was such a big fan of what Charlie was doing with his Instagram page and with his writing in Brewing Is For Everyone for such a long time before I slid feet first into his DM’s (I’m not embarrassed to say I made the first move) which was certainly over a year ago. Charlie was probably one of my first Instagram coffee “Friendssssss” (inbetweeners fans will get the reference) anyway….. It was certainly an eye-opening experience that someone on the other side of the world had the same passion as I did and was actively communicating about there love for coffee. But probably most reassuringly Charlie was and still is so open to conversing privately about coffee/culture/vibes, just Whatever really. Which is so refreshing because Y’all know social media can be fake AF. But that’s the beauty of it, it’s a real friendship, all be it online but that really doesn’t matter! And it’s connections and collaborations like this, that have played a huge part in where I am today.
So not only is Charlie a hella cool cat but, he’s also a big influence on the Melbourne coffee scene and community and he puts out some really dope content. In fact, it was Charlie and Brewing Is For Everyone who gave me my first feature which included a brewing recipe that I was digging at the time. Go on peep the pic, it’s a real blast from them Two brothers days.
Off the back of me reaching out to these guys, I most certainly gained a friend in Charlie. Not only that but, my inspiration grew and most importantly my own little coffee community grew. Charlie is a brother from downunder and it’s a huge pleasure to share this with you. So here’s our vibe, I asked him a few questions and this is what he had to say…
Jamie: You’ve been in the industry for a hot minute now! What have you seen change?
Charlie: To be honest, the most notable changes that I’ve seen have been mostly personal changes through growth. The more I grow and learn about the industry, the more I become self-assured and the greater confidence I have in my likes and dislikes in coffee. Coffee has been and will always be an evolving industry and my personal growth within coffee is very much the same. Technology will inevitably make things even easier for us and that process is fascinating. Mobile phones make everything so accessible. If I really wanted to, I could buy a coffee roaster, start sourcing green bean, begin an online store or buy a coffee machine and get it delivered anywhere in this part of the world all by using a smartphone (and, furthermore, all while staying within the comforts of my own home while I wait for my Uber Eats pad thai to arrive!). It’s pretty crazy to think about the technology we have at our fingertips; you can see how the world has opened up and understand the effects that can have on the coffee industry. Globalization!
Jamie: On the flip side of that what would you like to see change/ improve?
Charlie: More people pushing education! Take the mind-blowing comparison of a bottle of water and a flat white for example: a bottle of water costs approximately $4.00 to the consumer, and the average price for a flat white is approximately the same. If this bothers you and you’re able to understand why this is so wrong, then you probably know all the hard work and effort that’s gone into making that flat white possible and why paying only $4.00 is wrong on so many levels. So, for me, the aim is quite simple: educate others to promote a better understanding and share your vision. I can’t promise that I can educate everyone as I’m no expert but I can promise to share my passion and enthusiasm. And I hope that it feeds likeminded people who are receptive to good vibes within our industry, and also spark that hunger to learn more by not only focusing on the drinking and brewing aspect of coffee, but the seed to cup development and how decisions at the consumer end of that process really do matter.
Jamie: What did Brewing Is For Everyone teach you about the social media side of coffee?
Charlie: This is a pretty epic question as I learnt so much. It felt like a bit of a rollercoaster ride and I’m super grateful to Matty for giving me the avenue to channel some of the coffee creative juice I had up my sleeves. Social media plays such a big part in our day-to-day lives and can influence, teach and connect people with such ease. There are crazy dark holes in social media and you can lose yourself – I learnt this the hard way, but that’s another story… Focussing on the positives, I’ve made heaps of friends over social media – some I’ve met and some I look forward to meeting. Technology really has made it easier to connect with like-minded coffee enthusiasts all over the world. In fact, it was really the blog and then Instagram that let us to start chatting and vibing on coffee. We are two people who live so far away but share such a close bond over something as simple yet complex AF like coffee.
Jamie: What does community in coffee mean for you?
Charlie: The questions just keep flowing don’t they! It means everything, imagine a world where you didn’t know any of your neighbours, or none of your friends or family understood your passions and had nothing in common with you, where the concept of coffee is an alien language for the people around you. You’re on an island filled with people but no one understands you. This answer can be applied to any avenue not just coffee. Community in coffee/food/arts/comedy/life means everything because it plays such a huge role in connecting people with one another and connecting people that speak the same language. Fill a room with a coffee enthusiast from every country in the world and watch the good vibes flow, as coffee brings those people together!
Jamie: Apart from Padre Coffee (because everyone already knows they’re hella dope) what coffee have you been digging recently?
Charlie: In no particular order! I just finished a Kenyan Kainamui drop from The Cupping Room in Hong Kong thanks to the awesome gentleman running Cocobei in Melbourne’s Docklands, Danny aka @nonowhatever. Huge respect for Tess, the legend behind @unpressedtess and @tess_presso. She got gifted a box of coffee from Clifton Coffee Roasters in Bristol, UK and shared the love by sharing the gift of coffee with us. This Cafex Burundi drop is stellar, I haven’t had much Burundi coffee this year so I’ve really enjoyed it. Third is a pairing sent to me by Adam from Monastery Coffee in Adelaide, two El Salvador drops from the same farm Santa Ana – washed and natural, both equally delicious! Last but no least my brother Lewis @lewislikescoffee keeps me going on the Three Thousand Thieves monthly nectar, looking forward to brewing the local Brunswick based and roasted coffee from the cats at Code Black Coffee Roasters!
Jamie: Last one mate, You can only choose one! We all know your obsessed both ……. Plants or coffee?
Charlie: Easy, there’s no tricking a trickster! I choose plants, coffee plants that is! Grow, nurture, process coffee and sell my own green bean if I have to. Is it manipulating the question by then roasting that green bean to then consume? Either way, this outcome puts both options hand in hand!
I knew Y’all would vibe him as much as I do!!
Here’s a massive thanks to you Charlie and many more years of coffee vibin’ and friendship.
Always a vibe