In our area the competition between coffee shops, both cafes and specialty, is very high, there are many shops and many others open every day. A strong identity and knowing how to convey it well is therefore essential.
The Italian coffee shop has a strong and easily recognizable identity, which is why we decided to focus on this approach and on Espresso Academy. With them we have structured recipes, menus and operating manuals by adopting their standard “Italian Barista Method” which focuses on the recovery of traditional and less known recipes on the international market (but very good, such as “bicerin”).
This standard also puts the barista's ability to interact with the customer, communicate quality and know how to work quickly and efficiently in the first place.
We worked a lot on this during the stay of the EA staff with us, even involving our bartenders in a real time trial barista!
After several years as manager of a coffee bar I have seen, as a personal evolution of my career, the possibility of opening my own business. To push me in this direction were also the data that show how coffee is increasing more and more in the average consumption of the Middle East area.
To get my project off to a good start, I thought I should give a stronger structure to my knowledge acquired in the field, and I attended the courses of the Espresso academy. It was a very intense week from which I returned with clear ideas about what I wanted to do.
Once the location was identified, I contacted back the Espresso Academy group to discuss specific elements of my location and my project. Some calls were very important, for example for items like the menu. I understood how we often think that the composition of the menu is a relevant element to attract the public, but in reality it is even more important to structure it in order to optimize preparation (even the layout of the shop and the structure of the counter derives from the menu) and the food cost. In this sense, the work on the operating manual done by Espresso Academy has been extremely important.
We contacted Espresso Academy shortly after the opening of our coffee shop on the seafront of Souk Al Wakra. Our objective was to create and educate our team of baristas and develop a number of preparations fit to our exclusive format: a line of coffee related beverages that could be also bottled and served through home delivery and event catering. We started with some online meetings with the school in which we set the standards for hiring new staff and later Espresso Academy developed, directly from Florence, the recipes that we were planning to offer by finding the correct ratios between the ingredients and the ideal procedures to optimize production. At this point Simone from Espresso Academy joined us directly in Qatar and in one week he gave us the needed training for our baristas to make our service efficient and dynamic. With him we were also able to study our menu and find the best ways to communicate our quality to our customers.