When we started Square Mile our goals were fairly traditional for a startup roastery. Â After the last Nordic Barista Cup that changed. Â We had the chance to hang out with (the now newlywed) Chris and M’lissa Owens. Â As anyone who has met them can attest – they are astoundingly wonderful people.
We had a new goal – to be the kind of company that they would want to come and work for, and to be big enough to sustain them. Â This is a much healthier goal for a new company and we worked very hard to achieve that.
Chris and M’lissa (unbelievably) wanted to come to London to work with us and that was incredibly exciting. Â We, foolishly, got excited and told people about this. Â However one final hurdle stood in the way – the UK visa process.
The UK visa process has changed this year and try and try as we did we couldn’t overcome the challenge. Â We, with great sadness, couldn’t get them over to work legally for any length of time and so disappeared an incredible opportunity to work with some of the most talented, inspiring and undeniably wonderful people we’ve met.
We’re gutted. Â No other words for it.
Usually I wouldn’t post about this kind of thing on here. Â However, with SCAA/WBC coming up I am sure a few people are going to be asking them about London and I am sure it isn’t something they are wanting to talk a great deal about – not for any secretive reason, it just makes us all quite sad.
I can’t wait to see them and hang out in the next few days, and it was lovely to find out Gwilym’s barista buddy was Chris. Â As you’ve probably gathered we think the world of Chris and M’lissa and are sure they have an amazing coffee career ahead of them. Â We just wish we could have shared some of it with them.