Açelya Telli Danışmaz is a Turkish home barista and academician whose 12-year-long coffee journey is founded on her learning process.
As a real-life counterexample to the common misconception that baristas have little education, Açelya prides herself on her rich academic background, spanning a major and double major program (which she excelled at), a 1-year master’s program, and a doctoral program in business administration from Yildiz Technical University. Açelya’s impressive achievements are very close to her heart and have molded her into the person she is today. And this is especially telling because it is this very willingness and drive to learn that took her on the road towards coffee.
Interestingly, her academic story parallels her coffee story, which began during her college years. Like many of us, she started by drinking mostly instant coffee and it was only once she went to university that a friend of hers, a coffee lover, introduced her to the brewed drink by taking her to chain coffee houses, where she tried coffee made using the French press method. This experience really left a positive impression on her and piqued her interest in the industry and the community.
A future academician, Açelya was motivated to learn as much about coffee as she was in class during her education. In her own time, she made coffee from different types of beans and one by one tried to distinguish the particularities of their individual taste and aroma. It was this process of experimentation, discovery, and learning that excited her the most. This encouraged her to gain more experience and increase her coffee skills, which is why she later attended basic level SCA coffee training and numerous coffee festivals. In fact, one of her most special achievements was winning the SCA coffee training prize from Istanbul Coffee Summit. In essence, she was able to integrate coffee into her life, and every time she learned a bit about the wonderful drink, the more she learned about herself.
However, her coffee journey was one that was not without struggle. During her higher education, constantly attending classes and preparing for exams was especially time-consuming and draining, proving to be quite a challenge for Açelya who had a lot on her plate. Juggling her education and her passion for coffee was not easy, and yet, she still managed to overcome this by consistently making time to learn more about coffee while shouldering heavy workloads. The key to this was her extraordinary capacity for discipline and regularity in her work, which allowed her to navigate her academic commitments and her passion for coffee.
Even after graduating from university and starting a professional career as an academician, coffee remained an important part of Açelya’s life. Today she still enjoys a good cup of coffee. In fact, her favorite part of her work is having her first coffee after arriving at her office, because it relaxes her, gives her energy, and makes her happy during the day. Furthermore, as a self-proclaimed real coffee lover, she also makes sure to use her Instagram as a vibrant platform on which she shares her experiences with coffee and painting with the public.
On a personal level, one of her most memorable experiences with coffee took place two years ago, when she bought coffee beans from a local roaster, ground them, and brewed the grinds herself with a V60 Coffee Dripper. This really shows her deep appreciation and support for local roasters in an industry dominated by chain coffee houses.
Açelya obviously has fond memories of her past and current experiences with coffee, which is why she is also very keen on continuing this journey well into her future. Her love for quality coffee, especially made by local roasters, drew her to the coffee industry, and over the course of her 12-year coffee journey, she has gained important insights into the changes that have taken place within. With a blossoming demand amongst coffee lovers for transparency of coffee production and processes, she is now looking forward to contributing even more to the coffee community and to one day opening her own caravan coffee shop in a seaside town.
At the heart of this ambition is her conception of success. To her, success is not necessarily a matter of numbers and therefore cannot be measured as such. She believes that it lies within the quality of what we offer, provide, and serve. That is why she aims to make great content for her Instagram account, and, in the future, great coffee with her own caravan coffee shop.
All in all, Açelya’s coffee story is one founded on learning, and that is precisely why there is so much to learn from her. So feel free to visit her Instagram page @coffeelovermomm and to say hi if you ever meet her in person. She appreciates it.