Delicious Food Is One of Life’s Simple Pleasures

Delicious Food

Food has many aspects to it – fulfilling hunger pangs, opening the floodgates to old memories or simply bringing people together. It can be complicated and a chef’s exclusive creation or home cooked food that people often die for. Whatever it may be, there can be no doubt that food is not merely a tool for sustenance, it is also one of life’s simple and primary pleasures.

Let us see how food invades every aspect of our being and how it affects our daily lives while meaning different things to different people.

  • Food is a great bonding force – Food is a glue that holds families and people together. Sitting down to dinner with family is a sure way to wash away the tiredness of the day and feel rejuvenated. It is also a great way to share experiences and events and plan together for a glorious next day. All this is possible when people get together with a purpose, to live life king-size with plates heaped with delicious food.

This angle where food should be taken at leisure and every morsel enjoyed to the full is not among friends and family only. In the past soldiers stopped fighting and put down their weapons and called a truce at night to cook food and have a hearty meal before resuming again the next morn. Even in the middle of a battle, food was enjoyed to the hilt.

  • Food is linked to memories – The earliest memories of childhood for most people are intricately linked to food, of the aroma of food wafting from the kitchen and filling the house. This stays with us long after we have grown old and withered. Additionally, food also brings back memories of events and celebrations. Remember the Christmas parties when the turkey was roasted at home and cakes in Hawthorn or wherever you were brought up were ordered from the bakery down the street? These thoughts of fun and laughter are always closely woven with the memories of the food you had.
  • Food is a comforting factor – Food peps us up when we are down. Most of us can show instances when food has managed to lift sagging spirit and mood and has helped to bring a smile back on our faces when the chips have been down. There are certain foods that release “happy” and “feel good” chemicals in the brain the most common being chocolate which contain phenyl ethylamine. This chemical helps to lift moods and is also released when people fall in love and are happy about it.

Food per se might not be ruling the world but when it comes to enjoying life’s simple pleasures there is no equal to it.

Latest in Beauty Technology

Every person is born with ten readymade tools for beauty care – the fingers. From time immemorial your fingers have maximised application of makeup and foundation and all other beauty care processes. However, all that has changed to a certain degree and is set to change further with every passing day. The advent of high performing and technologically advanced equipment has radically defined the changing beauty scenario making even intricate and complex treatments of yesteryears a quick and easy affair now.

What then are some of the latest innovations in beauty care and treatments that have taken the world by storm?

  • Beauty apps – The world today is run from smart phones and apps and hence can the beauty sector be far behind? There are a number of apps that at first seems amazing and unbelievable but yet is very much available for download. Take Skin Better, an app developed by scientists, beauticians, dermatologists and app developers. It provides a report of your skin that identifies dark areas, spots and wrinkles and other blemishes. Once your skin is analysed it will show up a list of skin care products that dermatologists would recommend. Or take the iDrated app. It is proved that drinking plenty of water is one of the secrets to a glowing skin. iDrated is a hydration monitor that quantifies how much water you should be drinking based on your age and weight. It has drink alarms and reminders to ensure that you never forget to top up.
  • Hair removal and skin rejuvenation – Remember those days when you had to wax or tweeze hair out periodically. Apart from being a painful process, you had to go through it every time you had to wear a short dress to a party. Now IPL machines for hair removal make sure that hair is permanently removed within 3 to 4 sessions and recurring treatments are not required. Laser operated equipment such as microdermabrasion machines remove dead cells of skin making way for a fresh and glowing look. One of the leaders in beauty care and treatments in Australia is AAD. The company imports and distributes state of the art laser and IPL machines sourced from top manufacturers from around the world.
  • Movos Wireless Styler – An advantage of using technologically advanced equipment is that it brings convenience to your fingertips. A fine example of this is the Movos wireless hair styler that does away with electric cords and yet has all the features of a conventional one. The flat iron can touch 400 degrees F and can function effortlessly for about 15 to 30 minutes. The charging dock stows the iron vertically and hence saves on storage space.
  • Eye wrinkle correcting laser – This is a FDA approved fractional skin laser and Tria Beauty has recently come out with a pocket sized version. The device is especially designed to take care of fine lines and crow’s feet under the eyes. It sends targeted beams of light at the area under treatment and this triggers production of collagen and elastin, both crucial components for a smooth and firmly textured skin. More than 85% of people surveyed who use this equipment saw a significant reduction in fine lines when used for barely two minutes a day for eight weeks.

These are just a minuscule list of the latest improvements in beauty technology. Today, new innovations are being introduced in the market almost every day.

Hire Right Staff for Your Cafe

Cafe Staff

At the very root of any successful organisation are the people behind the show. It is really that simple. Have a good hiring strategy in place that identifies the best people for the job and half the work of being successful is already over. However, it is easier said than done. Business owners and top HR executives should sit down and formulate plans, matching job requirements with the type of people that need to be hired. The best companies have clear cut guidelines in this direction with specific employee manuals.

Given this scenario, what are the steps that you should take as a cafe owner to hire the right staff for your establishment?

  • Define job requirements – Discuss with your managers the specific job requirements. There will always be a difference of opinion amongst your managers of what makes a good employee so you have to sort this out first. The next step is to put job ads in newspapers clearly defining the role that job aspirants will be required to play. Be as informative about your cafe as possible and be specific about qualifications and experience expected from applicants.

You can also get in touch with a recruitment agency in Melbourne or wherever your cafe is situated. In that case you do not have to go through the long drawn hiring process. These agencies have database of potential employees for different industries. Simply inform them of your requirements and the best fit will be sent to you for final interview. In Melbourne, the leader in this field is First Personnel, a hiring agency with long years of experience behind them.

  • Interview board of more than one – Have at least two managers conducting interviews. Every human being has a specific mental framework and hence the clouded judgement of one should not result in negating of a really good candidate. Managers should sync up after interviews and compare notes with one addressing concerns of the other. Further, have a core set of questions prepared before the interview that will bring out whether the candidate shares your values and concerns. From your side the interviews should be conducted in a manner that brings out the professionalism of your cafe.
  • Prepare for the interview – Strange as it may sound, preparing for an interview is a two way street. It is not only potential job seekers at your cafe that should come ready for the interview, you should too. Remember, the applicants are also evaluating you in their own way. Dress appropriately and read every resume beforehand. Have resume specific questions ready with you and your managers. Insist on every interviewee providing three professional references and make it clear that you will be reverting back to at least two of them. Your cafe is a purely service oriented business and people who are in direct contact with your patrons must have impeccable credentials and backgrounds.
  • Hiring for a new cafe – While the basics of hiring for a new or running cafe are the same, there are some background preparations that are required for ones starting off. You have to decide on the number of staff required to optimise your services. Over hiring will increase your recurring expenses and as a new business you can hardly afford to do so. Decide on the number of managers, chefs, cooks, dishwashers, serving staff, hosting staff and bartenders you need to get your business off the ground. A well structured hiring policy from the initial stages of business will pay you rich dividends in the long run.

A cafe is a client centric business so setting benchmarks of excellence in customer service through the right staff is crucial for you.

The History of Cafes – An Overview from Vienna


Cafes are closely linked with the addiction for coffee and people have been enjoying it for over 500 years now. Cafes started as a meeting place where citizens gathered to carry on conversation over the brown cup of liquid. It was not a matter of common talk only; it soon became a haunt for intellectuals where debates took place as well as discourse on revolutions, technological innovations, books and enlightenment on various subjects that then ruled the world.

To trace back the history of cafes it is necessary that the first stop should be Vienna. There is a story that needs to be told here. The rapid spread of coffee houses and cafes started in 1683 when Armenian spy Diodato opened the first cafe in Vienna. He served at the Viennese Imperial Court and was accused of being a double spy, snooping for both the Hapsburg and the Serbians.

At the turn of the 20th century, Viennese coffee house culture grew exponentially in popularity. It became a get together ground for pacifists, intellectuals, journalists, writers and artists who were disillusioned by the senseless killings of the First World War. One of the well known cafes in Vienna is Phil at 10-12, 1060 Vienna. It is basically a bookshop cafe that serves delicious breakfast and brunch. Tourists revel in the cafes of Vienna which is a mix of the traditional and the modern in aesthetics and interior decoration.

While it is true that cafes have been largely responsible for shaping the cultural ethos of Vienna, contrary to popular belief, the city is not the cradle of the European coffee house. The earliest evidence of the existence of European coffee houses goes back to Venice in 1647 and the distinction of having the first coffee houses in the world rests on Mecca from way back in the 12th century.

The popularity of coffee houses is largely attributed not to the brew itself but on the interactions of the people who visited it. Cafes were traditional meeting places to exchange views, conduct debates and in general present a view of the world from the perception of thinkers who moulded public opinion.

There is an interesting angle to cafe culture. It is thought that addiction to caffeine brought the thinkers to cafes repeatedly and it is the effect of caffeine that really opened up their minds. A fascinating example is that of Balzac the great French writer who is known to have eaten dry coffee grounds to stimulate his creative writing talents. Unfortunately he died at the young age of 49!

Cafes in the early days were perceived to be a common ground for commoners and hence were looked upon suspiciously by the rulers of the country. It was thought that they helped create an environment of discontent what with the radical exchange of views between visitors there leading to social and political revolution. King Charles II of England tried to limit the spread of cafes but did not ultimately succeed.

Apart from this, cafes were also places to conduct business. In 18th century London, cafes began to draw specific clientele which gave rise to cafes being patronised exclusively by lawyers, book-sellers or other businessmen. Ultimately of course these cafes managed to break through the barriers of exclusivity and became a space where people of all professions could mingle freely.

A final word from Australia – people of Melbourne love their coffee and it is therefore no wonder that the museum in the city has a section devoted to cafe culture as part of the History and Technology collection. A large number of exhibits are from the historical Black Cat Cafe which closed in 2001. These include cutlery and crockery, posters, leaflets, photographs and artworks.

There can be no greater tribute to cafes and coffee house culture than this.