Kirby Berlin: Australian Latte Art Champion 2011 and barista at The Maling Room, 206 Canterbury Road, Canterbury.
1.TCG: If you weren’t a barista what would you be?
Kirby: I always wanted to be a mechanic, because that is what my dad was.
2.TCG: How do you have your coffee at home? How do you make it and how do you take it?
Kirby: Aero press, I really enjoy drinking filter coffee- maybe because I drink espresso all day at work.
3.TCG: Tell us what your best-ever coffee experience was?
Kirby: My BEST coffee experience would probably be in Copenhagen, it was a hot day, and we went to coffee collective and we had a LOT of espresso. Whilst watching them roast.
4.TCG: If you’re not drinking coffee, what is your drink of choice?
Kirby: I really love tea. Jasmine pearl is my favourite.
5.TCG: What made you become a barista?
Kirby: I was a very determined young girl, I had my heart set on buying a Kombi van at a tender age of 11, and I told my parents I was going to start working. They had a little laugh, and by the end of the day I had myself a job at a donut shop, and that is where I discovered my love for making coffee.
6.TCG: What food do you think is the best compliment to a really great coffee?
Kirby: To be honest I can’t stand eating savory with coffee, so I’m going to have to say something little and sweet; maybe a macaron.
7.TCG: Does your coffee style say something about you?
Kirby: Oh definitely! It’s really funny the coffee culture that we have in Australia. I think the people that want to sound like they’re into their coffee order it strong (and I laugh when they continue to ask for it large as well), that’s sort of an oxymoron.
8.TCG: Where do all the old baristas go?
Kirby: Well, hopefully on to open their own successful business. I also teach at TAFE and there are a few older baristas there too.
9.TCG: What is your proudest coffee moment?
Kirby: Winning the Australian latte art competition 2011
10.TCG: What’s the one piece of advice you would give any coffee drinker about how best to enjoy their coffee?
Kirby: Try it many different ways. I always say start black and if that’s too strong then try it with milk. NEVER order a large! If in doubt ask your barista!