Megan Byrne

What’s your name and What did you do prior to coffee?

Megan Byrne.

Previously a Theology and Business student of St. Patrick’s Pontifical University, Maynooth.

When and how did you first get into Coffee?

I first got into Coffee as I was searching for a part time summer job to help pay my college fees, this was around the summer of 2013 because I had just turned 18. I confidently strolled into the small cafe around the corner from where I lived and asked if they’d hire me! I’ve always found that being headstrong and diving right in is the best way to get results. The manger was passionate about this ‘special coffee’ so he called it that was coming all the way from Galway, this was my first experience with Badger and Dodo and my first real taste of how much better coffee can be than instant kettle coffee.

How did you get involved in SCA?

After moving to my current job in Coffee Works Lucan I found myself very interested in getting involved with some SCA training courses as recommended by my boss Tristan Campher. The courses gave me a real taste for knowledge and I knew I wanted to get more involved with the SCA other than doing training courses. The opportunity to get involved arrived when the Irish chapter advertised that they were looking to train new judges for the Barista championship, I was like a kid on Christmas! I couldn’t send that email fast enough, I was so enthusiastic to get involved. During the judges training last year I had the most amazing experience learning from the industries absolute best, I was truly humbled to be learning from such experts in their various fields within the coffee scene here in Ireland. Since the judges training I’ve made a real effort to attend as many events as possible and like I’ve said before, just dive right in.

What encouraged you to become an ambassador and what area do you cover?

Since becoming involved with the speciality coffee industry I’ve always looked for ways to support it. Through attending various events in Dublin I came to realize that there’s a lot of potential to have similar events on a similar scale in my home county of Kildare. Kildare has always been the underrated commuter county of Dublin but we have some serious coffee hidden here, even a roastery!  I consider myself to be very involved in my local coffee community here in Kildare, constantly striving to support the local businesses and the amazing people that run them. I feel there’s a real warmth and solidarity within the Kildare coffee scene, through discussions with various people I am positive the general consensus is that more people would like to see events being run here. I really feel all that’s missing is a little support and encouragement from the chapter to get things running, an ambassador for Kildare would surely kickstart that.

Where do you see the chapter going with your involvement?

I feel that my involvement with the chapter would be very beneficial to putting the spotlight on Kildare as a serious location within the coffee industry. It is important to highlight areas outside the city to represent the fact that local level coffee scenes are very much thriving and they are capable of hosting great events just like the big names in the city do! Further more i believe that with a Kildare ambassador we can better the education around speciality coffee at a local level where people can attend events instead of commuting up to Dublin, transport links for Kildare are weak and commuting to Dublin late in the evening isn’t always as feasible as people think.

Why would you encourage people to become members of SCA?

I’d encourage anyone to become an SCA member for the community aspect. The coffee community are the most wonderful group of diverse and inclusive people I’ve ever met. The SCA brings these people together to create such a special little community where we learn about our industry, discuss important issues within the industry, educate ourselves further as a coffee community, and have some fun with events like brewing competitions, latte art throw downs and guest speakers.

What coffee are you currently drinking and how is it brewed?

As I type this survey I am working my way through a three cup Chemex I’ve brewed just for myself which is embarrassing to admit. This morning Ive brewed a Finca La Senda from Guatemala which i picked up from Cloud Pickers online shop. This year so far I’ve had a few delicious bags of Colombian coffees but wanted to try something a little different. I went for a higher dose of 30 grams of coffee to 500mls of ashbeck water which I brewed on my home setup, I’ve built up my home brew station over the past year and a half which i regularly feature via my instagram stories @Super_Meg_Meg