Monday, 14 May 2018

Chill Chats #5 with Tony Speight

Hello!
I'm back blogging again! I took the last 3 weeks off just so I could rest/recharge/refuel/think/plan/photograph/write/etc.
I have some really cool blog posts on the way (even though I say so myself!) so be sure to come back every Sunday at 7:30pm for new blog posts.

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Chill Chats so far...
Holly - Chill Chats #1
Michael - Chill Chats #2
Suzanna - Chill Chats #3
Sally - Chill Chats #4

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Tony Speight is the coffee king. I could listen to him talk about coffee and roasting and cupping and all things coffee related for hours and hours!
He set up his own business, West Cork Coffee, he has a roastery in Inishannon, and he supplies his coffee to loads of cafés around Cork.
Not only is Tony amazingly talented at what he does, he's also one of the coolest, kindest, friendliest, and funniest people I know. He inspires me so much, not just because he set up his own business, but also because he's extremely passionate about his work, and because he's so down to earth and so kind.
Thank you so much for everything you do, Tony, you're a legend!

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West Cork Coffee has a new website where you can see what places stock their coffee, and there's an online shop where you can buy your own coffee (oh yes!).
Check it out here, it's class.

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1. Favourite fruit?
I love fresh cherries, that'd be a treat. When they're at the market and in season they're amazing.

2. Favourite veg?
Sweet potato, I love sweet potato fries, sweet potato curries, they're really nice in a coconut curry.

3. What's one meal you couldn't live without?
It has to be breakfast! Your day is set up on your breakfast, I think. I get up earlier so I don't rush that aspect of the day.

4. Favourite time of the day?
6am in the morning before everything begins.

5. What's your go-to breakfast at the moment?
Eggs. Boiled, poached, scrambled, I love eggs. And soda bread. Or else I'd have Greek yogurt with granola, fruit, nuts, chia seeds, pumpkin seeds, I fill the whole bowl!

6. Favourite song?
I'm a big jazz fan. I love "Alabama" by John Coltrane.

7. What's your coffee order?
Double espresso and a flat white, both at the same time. I like to test the coffee with milk and also on its own.

8. Do you have any words of wisdom or a favourite quote that inspires you?
I suppose I'm all about living in the moment, taking the courage to follow your passion and your dream.

9. If you were to make a smoothie what would be in it?
Smoothies are the one thing I don't drink, I tried them but I don't like the consistency of them and there's all little bits. I'm not really into juice either. I did have a blender for a while and I experimented but they're just not for me.

10. If you were to change one thing in the world what would it be and why?
I suppose I'd love if more people supported independent speciality coffee and stopped drinking terrible coffee. I'd like if more people supported local cafés and local roasters and found out more about speciality coffee. And the same goes for local business too, it's much more sustainable, and you're helping small businesses too!

11. Favourite snack?
I love mixed nuts, especially Brazil nuts. I could eat a whole packet of Brazil nuts in one go!
One of my favourite things is a cheese board with wine, if that counts as a snack!

12. What's your top tip for staying healthy?
For me, I run. Every day if I can. It doesn't have to be 10 miles every day, once you just do something! If I don't exercise I feel it effects my mental health. It's important to find what suits you personally and go with it. If you don't exercise then it has an impact on your diet, your energy levels, your concentration.

13. Who inspires you?
My wife and kids inspire me so much. And Steve Leighton too, the founder and CEO of Has Bean Coffee.

14. What is your biggest achievement so far?
Having my coffee roasted for the London Coffee Masters two years in a row, that's a big thing for me. I did it last year and this year, a barista picks a competition coffee to use for it, and both Irish competitors picked my coffee which was amazing.
I suppose starting my own business took a lot of courage, something that I'm very proud of. I love how varied my job is.

15. Favourite café or restaurant?
Good Day Deli, definitely my number one! I love the environment and the location of it. It's simple food, done well. I like everything they're trying to achieve there.

16. Hummus or guacamole?
That's a tough one, I love hummus with crackers. I much prefer sliced avocado to guacamole. Sliced avocado with eggs is one of my favourite breakfasts.

17. Where's your favourite place in the world?
I love Courtmacsherry, I go there every Sunday. The reason I love it is because you have the beach and Food Depot. I love bringing my kids there, walking along the beach, and climbing up to all the nooks and crannies. I've travelled to loads of amazing places in the world, but the nicest place I'll ever go to is Courtmacsherry.

18. What do you do to stay active?
I love running.
Running to me is like meditation in motion, as I call it. It's how I switch off and relax.

19. If you could have dinner with any 3 people, dead or alive, who would they be and why?
John Coltrane, Pablo Picasso, and Colum McCann. And we'd have a cheese board for dinner.

20. Favourite item of clothing you own?
I have a t-shirt that I bought in Hawaii on my honeymoon, I still have it and I love it. It's a QuickSilver t-shirt with a surfer on the back of it.

21. Favourite dessert?
I don't have much of a sweet tooth. I love cheese boards and wine.

22. What's the highest percentage of dark chocolate you've ever had?
100%. I go for as dark as possible whenever I buy chocolate. I buy cacao nibs from The Clonakilty Chocolate Company and I always put them on my porridge.

23. Favourite thing to put on toast?
Peanut butter, smooth, nothing else. I'm so boring! Sometimes I sprinkle chia seeds on top of my toast.

24. Favourite herb or spice?
I love chillies, I love spicy food, like Indian dishes.
And Tabasco sauce.
I love to test my tastebuds and see what I can take!

25. Since I've asked you so many questions, what's one question you have for me?
Tony: Would you go into vegan cooking as a career?
Me: I suppose that's my dream but whether or not it'll happen is another thing! I'd love to have my own café but I'm thinking of starting off with a farmer's market stall, but we'll see!
If I could talk about food for the rest of my life I'd be happy out!

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We did the Chill Chats in Good Day Deli and obviously had to get coffee, we both got flat whites (I got mine with cashew milk). We got the most amazing breakfasts too, the food was so good that I actually forgot to take a picture of it!
I forget what it was called but I got the most delicious bread with wilted spinach, dukkah, and pesto, it was class!
So there we have it, Chill Chats #5 with Tony!
I want to say a massive thank you to Tony, thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to chat to me, I really do appreciate it.
Make sure to check out West Cork Coffee's new website, click here to have a look!

Make sure to check out my blog every Sunday at 7:30pm for a new blog post!
And if you have any questions/comments/or you just want to chat, feel free to send me an email to plantpoweredhuman@gmail.com or you can chat to me over on my Instagram!
Big love,
Darragh
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