Our Padre Profiles Series introduces the incredible people behind our brand.
Meet Andrew, Office Manager.
Tell us about your journey to Padre.
Originally I started in hospitality as a chef for 10 years in my hometown of Bundaberg, Queensland. During that time, I always held an interest in coffee - whether I was growing coffee plants or trying to roast on a little home roaster. I would buy random coffees without really knowing what I was doing!
Eventually I made the transition into specialty coffee and became a full time Head Barista. In the cafe I worked from, we gutted the building and set it up like a Melbourne style cafe - La Marzocco coffee machine, couple of Mazzer Grinders, Cold Drip machines, the works.
I worked there for about a year and the next obvious step was to come down to Melbourne. The pull was to turn my interest in specialty coffee into a profession.
I landed a Barista job in Southbank. On weekends, I’d head over to the Queen Vic Markets to buy groceries and ending up chatting with Gito (then manager of Padre Queen Vic Market and now Padre Sales Member). I thought if I was going to work for anyone, these guys seemed pretty cool, I didn’t know Padre before that. Gito got me in for an interview and I ended up managing Kit Espresso in the Royal Arcade, before eventually moving to HQ as Office Manager.
What is the most rewarding aspect of your role?
The Product Development and Project Management side of things, particularly developing our Budd range. We’re constantly working on developing the business, which is great as it ensures versatility within our job roles.
I’ve always been fascinated by the research and development process, even in my time as a chef with the processes of commercial cookery. I really enjoyed the research and development process in creating our Budd Sparkling Cascara - we took this tea and turned it into this fizzy, coffee, cherry, sparkling soft drink - how the hell do you do that!?
Expanding the Budd range is taking up a fair bit of our time. We’re also looking to introduce some teas and alternative beverages to the range. We just finished the RnD process for the new Budd pods.
I also enjoy my role within the Products Team in curating the retail range, researching new products, assessing them, and rolling them out. It’s exciting to see something new and cool in the retail offering and to know customers will benefit from the product also.
Speaking of Product Development, tell us about DripLab!
Yeah, I guess I had a bit of a head start to this whole product development process whilst producing the DripLab Cold Drip System!
I’m currently working with industrial designers on developing a metal stand prototype in addition to the current wooden stand.
I’ve also got another prototype grinder in the works. It’s designed to fit into an Aeropress - portable, but metal instead of ceramic burrs. That would be the third grinder I’ve developed now. Stay tuned!
Three apps you can’t live without…
I could probably live without them all (laughs). I use all the platforms like Facebook and Instagram, but wouldn’t be fussed if they were taken from me. Maybe the weather app? Mainly to check whether I can afford to ride to work or what to wear. I definitely relied on it a lot when I moved to Melbourne from Queensland!
Favourite travel experience so far…
Definitely Japan. Snowboarding in Japan, hanging out in Tokyo. Awesome people, awesome food.
Ideal Sunday a.m to p.m…
I’d wake up reasonably early, make a coffee, I’m generally not a breakfast eater, on weekends I don’t generally eat until lunchtime, maybe later. I’d definitely throw the fishing kayak onto my van and scoot off somewhere for a fish. Somewhere where I could just pull up the van close to the water, set the chairs up with some good food, a couple of beers, head out for a paddle on the kayak, catch some good stuff, come home, cook it!
Thought about a career in coffee? We love hearing from like-minded, driven individuals. Visit our Work with Us page.