Going British with a Spartan Twist
Interview, Photography by Annie Liao, Yitina Liao
|．Hour: 0700 - 2400|
|．Add: 379, Sec. 4, XinYi Rd.|
|．Woolloomooloo Facebook Page|
1. Why did you open this coffee shop?
Actually, opening a coffee shop was an accident. About seven years ago, there was a coffee shop right below where I lived. It was about to close at the time, and we were afraid the new shop was going to be too dirty and noisy and affecting our living qualities, so we took over.
2. Why here?
We opened our first shop in a family-friendly neighborhood area, while many of our urban customers came all the way from Xinyi district. At the time, I was also ruminating on some architectural design ideas (I studied architecture, by the way.) So I figured: why not build another one in Xinyi?
3. How did you come up with the name?
Woolloomooloo is a pier near Sydney, Australia, where I had lived for 26 years. All of our coffee beans were also from there, delivered via airmail. The name has another meaning, though: This coffee shop is like that pier, serving as a channel connecting cargos and people who get on and get off.
4. What do you remember the most at this cafe?
The other day, when I was making coffee, a guy with a fancy car threw his car keys on the table and said: “If you see a tow crane approaching my car, drive.”
5. Who do you remember the most at this cafe?
There was once a mother carrying her disable child to our shop. I was so touched, because it means that we successfully created a barrier-free environment.
6. What's your least favorite question from costumers?
All of our food is made with real, original ingredients, so I prefer the costumer not to ask for condiment such as Tabasco.
7. What's your most memorable cafe?
None. I experience by feelings. When the people, things, scenery and weather feel right, that’s the right place for me.
8. What food goes best with coffee?
We should drink coffee just as it is to get the most original taste.
9. Any food or beverage recommendation for foreigners?
Drink: Latte. Food: Our handmade bread.
10. Where is your favorite seat in this cafe?
I like to sit on anywhere in the long table, making new friends or eavesdropping on the conversation nearby. Coffee is a communication tool, and since people are often affected by space, I think coffee shops can create a space for conversations.
11. What kind of music goes best with coffee?
Any indie kind that inspires the brain.
12. Recommendations for non-coffee drinkers?
13. What's your favorite coffee flavor?
Latte, because it gives me the most comfort. I think milk and coffee are the best combination of all.
14. When do you drink coffee?
During the day, I will have up to six or seven cups of coffee. It’s a non-quittable addiction.
15. How did you fall for coffee?
Holding that ergonomic glass that contains perfect-ratio coffee is how I fall for coffee every time.
16. What's the link between coffee and personality?
Latte is good for gentle people, those who know coffee well must be drinking black coffee all the time.
17. What's the style of Woolloomooloo Cafe?
Modern British style with a Spartan twist.
18. In one sentence, describe Woolloomooloo Cafe.
Woolloomooloo is a place for people to share food, drinks and stories.
19. In your opinion, what makes Taiwan special?
People. It sounds shallow, but I really feel that way, having lived in the U.S. and Australia.
20. What's your favorite place in Taiwan?
Urban: The little alleys. They are full of surprises. Rural: The magnificent Taroko Gorge.