Toby is a university student during the week, and a Black Sheep family member on the weekends. He’s a bright, young genius (he’s going to be a doctor!) with a beaming smile and his latte art is impeccable. He enjoys a little casual banter with the customers and might just be too friendly for his own good! We love having him on the team.
What do you do at Black Sheep?
I am a Rocklea regular, where you will find me both Saturday and Sunday, almost without fail. Often, I am at the end of the line pouring your coffee.
How did you come to work at Black Sheep?
Black Sheep just about started my coffee career. I had been in the industry for six months before the cafe I was working in closed down. I was desperate to break through into the specialty coffee scene, so when a friend-of-a-friend was able to introduce me to Mark, I was ecstatic. An informal chat over coffee later, I found myself rostered on to work Saturdays and Sundays at Rocklea.
What does a typical day at Black Sheep look like for you?
Katie's beaming smile is usually the first thing to greet me of a morning. A slow trudge through the morning set up will follow, eventually ending with brekkie with the team and a short black in my hands. We then face six short hours of pumping out espresso, then a brisk clean up before we can finally relax as the day comes to a close. The last thing we do before going home is a nice group chat at the end of the day.
What do you love most about working at Black Sheep?
I mentioned this before, but Black Sheep is my second family. We have so much fun with each other, even when we are stressed out over the size of the coffee queue. We understand that things said during peak hour (peak six hours?) should never be taken to heart, and we all just knuckle down to get the job done. That's my favourite thing about working at Black Sheep.
What’s your go-to coffee order?
Short black. If I have the time to sit and ponder, filter.
And what about your favourite style of roast/bean?
I enjoy medium-light roasts, generally because the fruity flavours are more suited to filters. Costa Rica has served up the goods many times in this department.
Do you have a favourite type of drink to prepare?
Brewing filter coffee is my personal form of catharsis: slow and precise, a time to just focus on coffee.
What would we find you doing when you’re not at work?
I completed these questions on a university computer.
What’s one of your earliest memories of coffee?
Coffee was an adult thing for a long time. I used to drink black instant coffee, just because Dad did. It wasn't very nice.
What’s an achievement you’re most proud of?
I didn't get granted entry into undergraduate medicine. Instead, I have spent the last three years studying very hard, taking many tests, in order to get the grades I need to be granted entry into post-graduate medicine. Offers haven't been released yet, but I'm quietly confident that I will be on my way to being a doctor next year.
What’s something your customers might not know about you?
Some of my fondest memories are from growing up overseas, living in Indonesia and Qatar.