• Megan

4 minutes with Mihaela, head roaster at Belleville.

Updated: Aug 7, 2019

Spotting Mihaela at the German Aeropress championships last month was quite easy, I saw the iconic Belleville blue french work ware jacket a mile off - It was such a joy to finally meet Mihaela in person!


Like most coffee professionals she started her journey while doing something else; she had moved to Paris (from her home country, Romania) to play classical guitar and she's now the Head roaster at Belleville in Paris. That's a classic coffee professional story right there! So when we asked her to share something with us, it only seemed right that she also shared her other joy, music. Her 'moments of music' are below our chit chat.


Hello Mihaela 👋🏻

If you could use only 5 words to describe what you do what would they be? A student of Life working in Coffee . Where's your absolutely most favourite place in the whole wide world? I am at my happiest, when I have the calm pace of starring at the breathtaking panorama of mountains or into ocean waves. I love being above the clouds or on an empty beach. I know now that what I love most is how they help me find my way back to a pace where I actually make sense to myself. Paris is lovely but like any big city, Paris makes it hard to keep that pace in everyday life.  Another place of joy is being in the north of Romania, my country, in a  region called Maramures. That’s where my grandma lives. If you google it, you’ll understand why.

(we already have, it's dreamy - Click here)

Tells us what your dream Sunday would be . Get more than 5 hours of sleep. Wake up with the sun. Put great music on and linger in bed for the length of the album - it could maybe be Bach or Aretha Franklin or Joni Mitchell or so many more. Stretch. Have ginger tea & a big bowl of fresh fruit. Take a walk. Join a friend for breakfast and coffee. Take another walk. Read my way through a novel in the park. Have early dinner with friends. Go to a good jazz concert. Have whiskey with friends playing that concert. Go to sleep in freshly cleaned sheets that smell like spring. Besides roasting great coffee what else are you working on? I am working on a podcast I will release this fall, September 5th, called STIR & SERVE . It’s all about conversations with people I am in awe of, people who are very different than myself and the mirrors I see around. The first season is about candid conversations between women coffee professionals, with a focus on our experience, craft, creativity and vision as opposed to the mere fact that we are all women. We just recorded the 1st episode in Paris, and I had the surreal honour to be in conversation with Trish Rothgeb, Marysabel Caballero and Ashley Rodriguez. Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about what it means to have a voice and how you can use that voice to truly understand and represent your community. I believe our narratives need to reflect, inform and inspire the diversity of our industry and our world. We need context and we surely need truth. In the same time with these thoughts, I realised that all my role models so far have been men. Because men were all I was exposed to, in terms of visibility. I really wanna see more, though. I know for sure that we are as free and open to the world as the range of our perspectives. And I need more diverse perspective to learn from. Few interactions have inspired me more, as an adult, than listening to strong bright women in conversation with each other. That’s exactly what I hope to create and share with you.  Some of the moments of music I love : 

The links will take you to the YouTube videos.

Tchaikovsky’s Piano Concerto no. 1 with Horowitz on piano and Toscanini conducting (1943). The energy of this music! Try practicing your coffee skills in your coffeeshop at the end of the day on this. Or any other skills. You’re gonna kill it, I promise.  Bach’s Solo 6 Cello Suites w Pablo Casals (1939). This music as the first thing in the morning and your clients will adore you! It’s like magic. Just works!  Gustav Mahler’s Ich Bin Der Welt Abhanden Gekommen (1969) with Janet Baker if you’re sad and don’t want to be consoled, but mirrored into a piece of truth.  Beethoven’s 9th Symphony conducted by either Furtwängler or Mengelberg for when you need to restore your faith and joy in life. Chausson's Poème with Ginette Neveu (1946) on violin for a big warm hug 



- We have been listening to her top recommendation in the office all morning, even though we're not practising our coffee skills we just found it fitting to lift our sprits on a cold Wellington winters morning.