An wonderful enthusiasm for coffee

2017-12-26 06:00
PHOTO: Kalisha NaickerAubery Hlongwane, Starbucks Coffee Master.

PHOTO: Kalisha NaickerAubery Hlongwane, Starbucks Coffee Master.

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HAVE you ever wondered why some Starbucks baristas wear black aprons instead of the usual green ones at work?

It means they are coffee masters and experts in all things coffee.

Fever editor, Kalisha Naicker, chatted to Aubery Hlongwane, Starbucks Coffee Master to find out what makes him the best of the best.

KN: How did your career start?

AH: I wanted to breathe, sleep and dream coffee and was interested in achieving the highest level of recognition. My career started a few years ago in Pretoria as a barista. I was later promoted to a barista trainer, then I completed my shift supervisor training. Shortly after I completed the coffee master programme and I was promoted to district coffee master trainer. I then enrolled for the retail management training, which allows you to run a store, which I am currently completing.

KN: Why Starbucks?

AH: For its togetherness. All employees, from the CEO, to a barista are part of the Starbucks family. We are all partners with the aim of offering the best quality drinks and highest customer service.

KN: For someone like me, who is not much of a coffee drinker, how would you sell me the coffee?

AH: I would recommend freshly brewed coffee to give you the best Starbucks experience.

KN : Do you feel it important to be a great communicator as a coffee master?

AH: Yes, most definitely. You must be able to relate to the customer and offer the best service to them.

KN: How would you handle a customer who is unhappy with the coffee you presented?

AH: I will remake the drink as every customer deserves the best experience at Starbucks, just like our mission, which is “one cup”.

KN: Starbucks is finally here in Durban, what is your view about it?

AH: I think this is a very welcoming community. We are pleased to be here and will always live up to our brand. I encourage people to come to our store and experience what Starbucks has to offer.

KN: One word to describe yourself?

AH: Passionate.

KN: Do you think caffeine is a drug?

AH: Yes it is, but to be honest, anyone who drinks at Starbucks will be back for more.


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