Balancing ‘Talored’ donuts and coffee in a Jantelov ecosystem
MONA ANITA K. OLSEN, PH.D.
University of Stavanger
Moving from Ithaca, N.Y., to the southern coast of Norway, I have been on the hunt for creative coffee flavors. I miss the coffee culture from Ithaca and believe that nothing starts an academic morning better for me on Zoom in the coronavirus times like a quality cup that has distinct taste. I consider it travel in a cup, as I connect digitally these days with others.
After almost a year of searching, success in my hunt made progress in June, when a friend from high school in Randolph, N.J., (who currently lives in Oslo) put a Creative Mornings Event with Talor Brown on my radar. I had not heard of Creative Morning previously but was excited to join in to hear about the topic of insecurity in business and also learn more about Australian entrepreneur Talor Browne’s entrepreneurial adventures in Norway.
The session was a quick power hour, but I learned enough to know that Brown would be someone to collaborate with in the university environment. Her charisma, charm, persistence, energy, and entrepreneurial drive showed in her presentation, as she not only took us on a virtual tour of her facilities but also shared many lessons learned from her work experiences in a truly transparent fashion.
After the June session, I researched more about her in hopes of exploring whether she could also be a good fit for a guest lecture spot at the Norwegian Hotel School at the University of Stavanger (UiS) in the class on event planning for the fall semester. I also opted to buy some product and have it shipped to my house to test it out. I fell in love with the packaging and creative approach to coffee. Sadly, I still hadn’t tested the donuts, yet, but it is on my list for my next Oslo visit or event where I need to bring the food and beverage.
Brown joined the MICE (meetings, incentives, conferences and exhibitions) Class at UiS in August for a power hour and discussed pop-ups, weddings, and event planning. It was a great complement to our class content on event-planning operations and sourcing of creative food and beverage. She took us on a virtual tour of the kitchen and roastery and explained the importance of building a solid team and culture to make work fun and successful. She also explained a lot about her background and how each of the experiences—successes and failures—before starting Talormade, have shaped her approach and focus.
Talor Brown, from Albury Wodonga in Australia, has been in the coffee industry for almost two decades. Her first entrepreneurial venture, Talor&Jørgen, was a fast success, shipping to over 50 countries in the first year of operations. She has also trained as a pastry chef at Duchess of Spotswood and worked with All Day Doughnuts in Melbourne to fine-tune her tailored donut (or doughnut) making skills.
Using all of her experiences and education, she moved back to Norway and started doing pop-ups under the name Fryd. These pop-ups drew people in long lines and the donuts would sell out in less than an hour! These pop-ups demonstrated the demand for her product and ended up being the essential launch of her new business in Norway, Talormade.
Talormade currently has two physical locations in Oslo, in Lillo Gård and Oslobukta. There are also plans for new locations on the horizon. Talormade also has an online e-commerce presence to sell products at talormade.no. Known for its colorful and creative donuts, Talormade creates an experience that you cannot forget. Some miscellaneous flavors of donuts offered include Boston cream, elderflower, brown cheese, cinnamon sugar, orange poppyseed, matcha, mint, milk & cookies, bubblegum, and red velvet. This past summer, Talormade also featured a brown cheese softis, Norwegian soft ice cream!
Talormade also roasts its own coffee in a variety of flavors from buttered popcorn to malted milkshake to maple & pecan. These flavored coffee boxes can be ordered on the website and arrive quickly in the mail. The coffee boxes look like a work of art and are a talking piece for conversation when hosting others. Further, one can also subscribe to a monthly coffee membership. The coffee memberships allow for customization based on your preferences—and the website allows customers to select their preferences not only in taste but in the delivery of the beans, including grind type, amount of coffee per month, and flavor profiles.
Watching the growth and success of Talormade during a pandemic and in Oslo is impressive. Where there is a will and flexibility, there is a way. Watching a “tailored” approach succeed in a Jantelov culture, where you should not stand out, is simply worthy of case study. I wonder if they will ever make a Jantelov donut or coffee flavor or bring a Brooklyn donut or coffee flavor to the American Lista area of the south.
This article originally appeared in the Oct. 9, 2020, issue of The Norwegian American. To subscribe, visit SUBSCRIBE or call us at (206) 784-4617.