Meet a Woman in Coffee who comes from the icy north but is at home in the global specialty coffee community: We invite you to get to know Sonja Björk Grant, owner of roasting company Kaffibrugghúsid, located in the harbour area in Reyjkajiv, Iceland and SCA judge in this edition…
Meet Sindy Mourita from Massimo Zanetti Beverage Ibérica, another barista featured in our series Women & Coffee! Here we share the stories of women that are shaping and changing the world of coffee around us, telling their story in their own words.
1. Sindy, what was your first experience with coffee?
I think it really all starts when we are still small. I remember very well the smell of coffee, invading the kitchen first thing in the morning. My favorite breakfast was undoubtedly that huge coffee mug where I could dip my bread with butter.
But I would say that my first real coffee experience was exactly when I arrived in England about 6 years ago, where I would have my first job as a Barista in a well known Coffee Shops chain.
2. What motivates you to work with coffee?
It’s wonderful how much a grain can have to count.
It is fascinating how much coffee unites people.
It’s amazing how long a conversation about coffee can go on for hours.
What motivates me is exactly this.
Coffee is not just an Espresso, it’s not just “anything else”. It’s a universe that has so much to explore for whoever wants it. And it’s in fact a subject that fascinates me immensely.
When I returned to Portugal I believed that my little passion for coffee would have been “filed away in a drawer”. Until at the beginning of last year, an opportunity arose where I truly learned what it was like to be at the heart of the coffee industry – I used to joke about it and say: “I thought I knew a lot, and after all I didn’t know anything”.
With everything I’m learning I really feel that the more I know, the more I want to evolve as a Barista – and above all share and be part of this chain of evolution that is already quite notorious in our country, thanks to the great coffee professionals who have clearly shown a love and dedication for the grain.
3. What is your vision about the world of coffee in the future?
I want to believe that it will gain more and more value, as well as appreciators with the palate more and more refined. Although Espresso is really something “ours”, I believe that filter methods will start to gain more and more strength.
4. Do you have a woman or a man of reference in the world of coffee? If yes, who and why?
Someone I had the pleasure to meet is without a doubt Sandra Azevedo from Academia do Café. It was exactly there that I realized the level of complexity that this world can have, and I couldn’t help but be fascinated by the high level of knowledge that Sandra demonstrates. For me, it is undoubtedly an example to follow and an enormous pride to have crossed with her at the beginning of this adventure.
A professional that I would love to have the opportunity to meet, is certainly James Hoffmann.
I don’t even describe why, I challenge you to go see one of his videos. He is simply brilliant.
5. Imagine you would be a piece of a coffee machine. What piece would you be and why? 😉
The filter holder. It’s like a magic wand. And magic happens when on one side the finely ground bean enter, and on the other side the most precious, creamy and intense nectar comes out.
6. Finally, what is your favorite coffee drink for a Monday morning?
Monday mornings are complicated, so I keep it simple. So I just drink a fresh espresso, from very freshly ground coffee beans, to get me through another week.