The next date came from MysteryDates.ie. Earlier that day, the owner had put out a text message out to a select a pool of potential dates. John was the first to come back. I knew nothing about him but had to wait outside my now regular ‘meet up’ point at the entrance of St. Stephen’s Green. John, had been given a description of me, so he knew what he was looking for me. I suppose it helps being a distinguished character, tall with mad frizzy hair. Again, for me, I was going in blind. Romance didn’t favour the first impressions. He just didn’t seem my usual type or what I was looking for. He was an introvert both in his body language and his whole persona. A painter by trade, he was happy with his lot. However, I was still really looking forward to the dating activity that evening, as I knew that I would get my fix.
As you all know by now, I decided to take the plunge last year and return about to the Emerald Isle from Australia. I had many fears about the Westward decision. Would I fit it, whom would I hang out with, what about my career and so on. However, my biggest fear overall would have to be where I’d find a good coffee. From living in Melbourne Town, I had become used to good coffee. It’s a standard thing there. In the same way as the sun comes up in the morning, indeed a fine latte is a given in the foodie hub of Melbourne. I’d come to rely on that daily fix. It was my special time. My latte and me; it was paradise. My time down in Tipperary however, has ensured serious withdrawal symptoms. I’ve had no choice but to lose all attachments to my luscious latte. Dublin, on the otherhand, is beginning to understand the daily woes of the coffee nation, and a select few coffee institutions have been put in place. This Irish coffee revolution is clearly led by one man, and one man only, and that is the Buzz aka Bald Barista. He is the army in chief, the Coffee Wizard, ahead of the game in striving for coffee perfection. He heard about my single revolution and got in touch in a bid to have his institution included in the 40 dates. It was a privilege, to say the least.
John and I made our way to the Bald Barista on Aungier Street and were met with a sign “Be Nice or Leave” and later the larger than life character Buzz. I was immediately impressed with Buzz. He is a type of character, where you’ll either like him, or you you’ll hate him. There’s no in between, but he embodies passion in everything he does. For nearly 2hrs, we were transcended to the coffee world learning about the origins of coffee beans and the art of coffee making. Buzz, a regarded coffee sommelier, talked passionately about his biggest love. Buzz doesn’t know how to do things by halves. It’s all or nothing. If the espresso is not his optimum, he throws it out and makes another, but at no point would be ever serve a coffee not at his own high standard. He believes in engaging all senses to make the perfect cup of coffee. His coffee artistry is also visual, believing that you eat with your eyes. There were numerous analogies that could be used in the dating world, and I was taking notes profusely.
Buzz has created a unique environment at the Bald Barista. It follows the European café concept, where the café is part of your daily life and where good coffee and good conversation go hand in hand; engaging the senses, solving the problems of the world, opening opportunities.
The café’s identity is very important. Buzz is quick to point out that it’s a real café, not a coffee shop. It’s adult friendly, where anything is
possible and everyone is approachable. I like the attitude, and I like the vibe. Singlelista gives the Bald Barista the S mark, as being an elite single friendly venue. Buzz spoke about his strive for perfection in coffee and in what he calls the ‘God shot’. It’s the beyond perfect, when all factors collide to ensure pure perfection. In all his years, Buzz has only tasted four of these God shots, but he strives for it everyday. I could see direct comparisons with the Bald Barista attitude and the Singlelista attitude. In essence, you have to be passionate, you have to love what you are doing, you have to be confident in what you are doing, and you have to break the rules in your search for perfection, but ultimately it’s your taste that counts.
Buzz’s talk was truly inspiring. I was left buzzing (sorry bad joke!!). John equally enjoyed it. I didn’t get my fix from my date itself. He was far off my God shot. I will continue to strive. But rest assured, my senses will reap the rewards until then.
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