Barista of The Week… Mark Wilson
Owner & Barista at Two Brothers
558 Mitcham Road Mitcham, VIC
The Coffee Guide (TCG): What coffee do you use at work?
Mark: Veneziano Forza.
TCG: If you weren’t a barista what would you be?
TCG: How do you have your coffee at home? How do you make it and how do you take it?
Mark: Exactly the same as at work – strong latte. I have a vintage Simonelli reconditioned machine sitting on my deck at home that I take great pride in.
TCG: What’s the best thing about your job- the one thing that you really love aside from the coffee?
Mark: Working with my wife. I just can’t get enough of her.
TCG: What is your favourite music? (For work or for play)
Mark: Anything by DJ Cait.
TCG: What’s your favourite food?
Mark: Pizza – cause it’s the preferred food of the TMNT.
TCG: Tell us what your best (or first) coffee experience was.
Mark: Year 12. Drinking coffee to stay awake whilst trying to complete assignments.
TCG: If you’re not drinking coffee, what is your drink of choice?
Mark: Bourbon and Coke. Why? Because it’s bourbon. With coke.
TCG: What made you become a barista?
Mark: Chance. And it paid the bills…. Who knew it would become a passion?
TCG: Do people often try and chat you up at work? Have you ever taken the offer up?
Mark: No. Absolutely not. Definitely not. Right honey? (Says my wife sitting next to me….)
TCG: What food do you think is the best compliment to a really great coffee?
Mark: It’s gotta be a greasy breakkie (bacon and eggs) after a big night out.
TCG: How many coffees would you make in the average day?
Mark: About 300 plus.
TCG: What’s the largest amount of coffees you have made in a day?
Mark: 500 plus.
TCG: Where do all the old baristas go?
TCG: Where has your coffee making taken you?
Mark: It’s provided me with the means to travel the world.
TCG: What has been your favourite moment as a barista?
Mark: I’d consider myself to be the ‘daytime barman’ and a surrogate parent to many staff, so I get to meet some great people and listen to some wonderful stories.
TCG: What is the most exciting thing happening in coffee right now for you?
Mark: Accessibility to farms and direct trade to beans from around the world.
TCG: If you could pick one spot in the world to sit and have a coffee, where would it be and what coffee would you have?
Mark: I know it’s a cliché, but it would have to be Rome. I haven’t been to Italy and it looks like a beautiful country and Rome seems as good a city as any to have a coffee in.
TCG: If you could make coffee for one other person of your choice (anyone- past or present), who would it be and what coffee would you make them?
Mark: I’d like to have made a coffee for Marilyn Monroe. A strong latte over breakfast the next morning.
TCG: Where is your favourite place to hang out in Melbourne?
TCG: Do you have any pets?
Mark: We have a one-year-old puppy named Tilly, who is a kelpie cross lab that we picked up from the RSPCA.
TCG: What did you do on your last day off?
Mark: Took off to watch the VFL Bombers play the Werribee Tigers on Fathers Day. We may have lost the game, but the Bombers put up another helluva fight.
TCG: In a good cup of coffee, how much of it is due to the barista and how much is due to the beans?
Mark: You can’t make a good coffee using crap beans.
TCG: Is decaf a dirty word?
TCG: Is specialty tea the new cappuccino?
Mark: No…it’s so much more. It’s the new black. It’s the cat’s meow. It’s the white on rice. And Larsen & Thompson have a fantastic range of blends.
TCG: What is your favourite kind of tea?
Mark: Larsen & Thompson Peppermint.
TCG: What is your favourite alternate brewing method?
Mark: Cold drip.
TCG: Where do you see alternate brewing methods going?
Mark: Time will tell…
TCG: Will other methods fade away?
Mark: It’s all a cycle man.