When I clock in, I first check to see if I need to restock the bar with anything from the back fridge or closet. Then, I check to see how the espresso machine pulls. If it needs to be adjusted, I adjust it. This is all just routine.
Up until two months ago, I had no experience working as a barista. Other than a base level knowledge of coffee and how to make pour over, I didn't know much.
Fortunately, I learned quickly thanks to the help and encouragement from my co-workers.
At first, I was incredibly overwhelmed by all the terminology. Words and phrases like "pulling a shot" and "tamping" held little to no meaning to me.
However, once I learned to maneuver my way around the bar, I began to settle in. I started to enjoy the drink crafting process. Additionally, when I became more secure in my drink making abilities, I felt more secure to interact with customers. This is where routine falls away, and I find the most satisfaction in my job.
Over the last few months, I've met a number of new people I would not have otherwise met.
As a barista, I'm in such a unique place to get to know people. You never know what kind of day someone is having, but if I can help bring a smile to someone's face through making coffee and conversation, that's what I'm going to do.
Life moves at such a fast pace, and sometimes it's easy to miss people. So, I think taking a minute to slow down and have a conversation with someone while I'm making their drink is incredibly valuable.
Making coffee is more than just another job. It's an opportunity to meet new people and forge new relationships.
Coffee is just another perk of the job.