The 2020 COVID pandemic and the subsequent global lockdown, has ignited the passion for good coffee at home across the world. ‘Seven Questions with’ is a series of interviews with people we from Marzano Caffè have met on social media who are passionate about coffee and we talk about their coffee journey and what drives their passion for the art of making the perfect cup.
Tell us about yourself. Who are you and what do you do in life?
Hi there! Nice to meet you. My name is Rebecca. On Instagram you might know me as @bakkiemetbecca, which - roughly translated - means: coffee with Becca. Believe me, it sounds better in Dutch! (-;
Whenever I’m not sitting in a coffee place, sipping cappuccinos and typing on my laptop, I’m probably working behind a bar myself. I’ve been a barista for a few years now and I’m not planning on droping those portafilters any time soon. Coffee drives and inspires me. That’s why I also started an Instagram account on which I share my coffee experience and learn from others. Besides that, I just stepped into the world of freelancers as a copywriter. So, hit me up for some coffee or copy anytime!
How did you discover your passion for coffee?
Until very recently, all of my jobs have been in restaurants. Waiting tables, doing dishes and - most of all - admiring the baristas. The way they made coffee with so much passion, talked about it with joy in their eyes and drank it as if it was the best thing they ever tasted.
I myself hated the taste of coffee and yet loved the world of it. Because of that interest, I wiggled my way behind a La Marzocco. And after watching other baristas pour the most beautiful patterns for quite some time, it felt super natural to hold a milk jug myself. So, there I was: pouring pretty cappuccinos before I even started drinking them…
After a lot of espresso tasting I eventually started to get used to the flavors and replaced my standard caramel latte for a cappuccino. To this day I still think cappuccinos are the tastiest coffee drinks ever. Try and convince me otherwise (-;
What was it that made you decide to get serious about making coffee?
The second I stood behind a coffee machine, I felt so powerful. That’s why I took it serious from the start. However, it took me quite some time to really develop an interest in the entire world behind the cup I was creating. Maybe because I was required to do a coffee exam at the restaurant I was working, whilst also studying for my high school exams. I just had other priorities…
A little while later I got the opportunity to start as a barista for a brand-new coffee place in town and train all the other people they hired. That’s when I immediately picked up several books about coffee and dove right in. I’m still diving and don’t think I’ll ever reach the end of everything there is to know about coffee.
How did the COVID pandemic influence you and your coffee journey?
Luckily, I was able to continue my job as a barista. The coffee place I work stayed open for coffees to go. It was - and still is - amazing how many people stopped by for coffee. When it wasn’t raining like crazy, there were lines of people waiting outside. Now that we’ve opened a little bit more, those loyal visitors still come by every day for their daily dose of caffeine.
I think most of us have been spending more time at home the past year. My home was just missing one thing; a good coffee machine. Yep, the pandemic made me buy an espresso machine! At home I started to experiment with different coffee beans and developing my taste. So in the end; my hours may have been a bit insecure at work, but my own coffee journey benefited a lot from that!
What is your favorite method of brewing coffee recipe and why?
Like I said before, cappuccinos are my all-time favorites! For espressos I use a lot of different beans and recipes, but I always start with this one: 19 grams in, 40 grams out, within approximately 25-28 seconds. Depending on the outcome I change one variable at a time. This requires patience and a lot (!!) of tasting, but the result is worth the process. Actually, the process is already worth the process! I learn something from it every damn time.
If you can go back to when you just started with coffee, which advice would you give to yourself?
Try to equally divide your focus between latte art and tasting coffee. Great latte art may be your goal, but taste is way more important for the ones drinking it. And don’t be afraid to ask more questions! You may think you know a lot already, but the world of coffee is an endless cup of information and inspiration.
Where will your coffee journey take you next?
There is a place for everyone who wants it in the world of coffee. I truly believe that. For now, I’m happy with my own little place within this community. However, dreaming about the future is something I do on the daily. My dream right now is to combine my two passions together: writing & coffee. Maybe for a webshop, maybe for a roaster. But whatever it will be; there’ll be a place for it eventually.
I’ll also be travelling to Spain with my campervan in the very near future. Since I’m not a big fan of filter coffee (yet), I could really use some tips for nice coffee drinks with milk, that can be made in a van. Hit me up with your best advice, recipes and methods!
Favorite coffee drink: cappuccino with oatmilk
Favorite coffee place: Ax Specialty Coffee
Favorite coffeequote: don’t let your coffee get cold, by staring at someone else’s cup