Working at Harvest Kitchen with Mia

Mia, 17, is a barista and waitress at Harvest Kitchen. Harvest Kitchen Is beautifully situated at Seifried Winery and offers restaurant dining and a fully equipped function venue for conferences, weddings, and events.

Mia’s family has always been involved in hospitality, owning catering and restaurant businesses so she grew up around food and customer service. When she left school she started with part-time and weekend shifts and is now full-time.

Mia didn’t undergo any formal training to become the skilled barista she is today. With some guidance from her Mum’s seasoned staff, Ashley and Phoenix, Mia mastered the art of coffee-making. Now Mia is able to teach other colleagues the ropes of brewing the perfect cup.

She is also a waitress and enjoys customer service and making people happy.

“When they come to Harvest Kitchen, it’s all about them – it’s their day!”

It is a varied role and there is always something different happening. She is involved in events, and they often get walking or biking groups that come in for coffee too.

Mia enjoys living in Nelson Tasman, according to her, it’s the region’s charm, the sunshine, and the abundance of activities. Working in a place that feels like a second home, Mia appreciates her colleagues who are all different. “It’s a cool place to be”.

Beyond the coffee counter, Mia highlights the personal growth she’s experienced in the hospitality industry.

“It’s really good to grow confidence, to be able to talk to people and serve them – it’s a good skill to have.”

At the beginning she found it scary to talk to a massive table and now she is confident. Mia values the skill of customer service, recognising its universal applicability.

Outside of work, Mia enjoys hanging out with friends, hitting the beach, and taking leisurely walks. With plans to pursue Beauty Therapy next year at NMIT Te Pūkenga, Mia envisions combining her skills to explore the world and travel.

For anyone else contemplating a journey into the hospitality industry, Mia’s advice is simple and powerful:

“Do it, don’t be scared”.