Monday, 6 January 2014

Week beginning January 6th - Julia C. and Blazej 'Blaze' Stempin - Kaffeine legends

As we finished for the Christmas break, two of our 'legend status' staff members finished up at Kaffeine, Julia and Blazej.

Julia has been working at Kaffeine since August 2011, primarily on service. Julia's hair styles were one of the most noticeable aspects about her, but was also even more important was the rapport that Julia built up over time with our regular customers.

She began on service and quickly moved to senior level, then to Assistant Manager where she remained until recently when asked for more time to focus on her own skills in drawing and sewing that she did in her own spare time as well as working nights in a craft beer bar.

Julia also had great skills in the kitchen, on the espresso machine and just one of the small details that make a difference to Kaffeine, her handwriting for all our descriptor cards. Iconic it was, no-one could beat it.

She was also one of the fastest stickerers ever, until beaten by Tara in the great sticker off of 2013, but she was also one of the fastest at everything, from sandwiches in the kitchen to packing down at night time.

Julia has seen Kaffeine grow over time to be regarded as one of the best cafes in the U.K., and it is because of Julia and others like her that we are fortunate to have that reputation.

Julia thank you very much for everything you have committed to Kaffeine over the past two years, it is very, very much appreciated.

When he started in May 2012 Blazej quickly became known as the man with coffee in his veins. When most of us would be finishing a dinner with a last drink, he would be having an aeropress. If anyone fitted the stereotype of a London barista, it was Blaze. Coffee permanently ingrained into his hands, roaring around town on his fixed wheel bike, jeans rolled up to his calves, beard and bald head, hanging around in every other cafe in London on his days off.

He came to us as the Polish cup tasting champion of 2011, wanting to work in London as that 'was where it was all happening' and has left, in my eyes, as being one of the people who have not only improved the reputation for coffee in Kaffeine, but also in London overall.

Starting as a barista, he was soon enough promoted to senior barista and for the past six months has been the Kaffeine lead barista, managing our coffee supply chain, our guest espresso program and our machine, grinder and RO maintenance as well as continuously improving our standards and quality.

He will be remembered (with a smile) as the man who broke most everything. Blazej the destroyer. In the time he was here he took 4 fridge handles clean off the fridge doors during service and we had to increase our par levels of spare latte art glasses.

But Blazej's sense of humour, his absolute speed, efficiency and work ethic, his incredible passion and knowledge for coffee and for the coffee industry overall is what he will be really remembered for, as well as his commitment to his family back in Poland, which is why he has returned. Respect.

Both Blazej and Julia. Two Kaffeine legends who fully deserve that title and the respect and appreciation from us all for all that they have committed to Kaffeine. Thank you both, we wish you all the best.

In other news, welcome back to the New Year! Lots of decaf and green tea already sold this week, we had the shop repainted over the holidays so we are all fresh and ready to go, we hope you are too.

Thank you for reading, please enjoy the menu this week, as we will enjoy bringing it to you.

Traditional bircher muesli with rhubarb and raspberry compote 3.60
Granola muesli with pomegranate molasses and rhubarb and raspberry compote 3.60
Fruit salad (pineapple, mango, strawberries, grapes, passion fruit) 3.70
Ciabatta roll with omelette, pancetta, rocket and tomato salsa 4.90
Ciabatta roll with courgette omelette, rocket and tomato salsa 4.90
Croissant with Italian roast ham, talleggio cheese, spinach & plum tomatoes 4.90
Seven seed bakery bloomer toast with home made preserves 1.90
Coffee, cherry and walnut toast 2.40
Banana bread 2.40
Porridge with choices of muscovado sugar, dried fruit, chopped nuts, honey, golden syrup or compote 3.00

Pastries by Seven Seed bakery
French butter croissants 1.90
Pain au chocolat 2.50
Almond croissants 2.80

Baked Treats
Sweet Muffins: Blackberries and apple 2.40
Savoury Scone: Broccoli, chilli and manchego 2.40
Lemon and coconut friands 2.40
Super moist chocolate brownies 2.40
White chocolate blondies 2.40
Portuguese tarts 2.00
ANZAC cookies 2.00
Afgan Biscuits 2.00

Soup: Spiced sweet potato 4.50

French retro baguettes 5.00
Italian roast ham with red onion, gruyere, gherkin, spinach and dijon
Roasted sweet potato, pea pesto, red onion, ricotta and spinach

Foccacias 5.30
Pancetta with tomato, avocado, aioli and spinach
Roasted crown prince squash with mushrooms, blue cheese and rocket

Salads: 5.50/6.90
Vietnamese noodle with HG Walters organic chicken, carrots, coriander, peanuts & chilli sauce
Blood orange, grapefruit, avocado, pecorino, hazelnuts & watercress
Roasted beetroot with marscapone cheese and walnuts

Tart: 4.40 or 7.90 with salad
Brown rice tuna bake with rouille

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