For the fourth instalment of our ‘Influencer Series’ we speak to Brodie of Portobello Road’s Cloud Inc Vape's, a fairly new establishment on the scene offering up a unique mix for coffee drinkers, vapers and the local community. Mixing two things we personally love – Vaping and Coffee, Cloud Inc. was a winner for us right from the jump. Through careful consideration and strong attention to details, Brodie and Amy have managed to build a successful store in one of London’s most desirable locations, combining an aesthetically pleasing layout with the quality product to match.
The stores vape bar offers a carefully comprised range of Juices (including Simple of course) and selected hardware, as well as a personalised service and knowledge from the guys behind the store themselves. We caught up with founder Brodie to find out a bit more on the stores origins, his views on the industry and whats next for Cloud Inc…
Could you tell us a bit more on your own personal journey into the world of Vaping?
I smoked my first cig when I was 13 on a ferry headed to Ireland. Kept at it for about 14 years and tried all forms of NRT to no avail until I found my trusty istick 50w with an atlantis tank. Since then I’ve not looked back.
How did you get started with Cloud Inc.? Why did you choose to set up shop on Portobello Road?
The idea came from a wish that Portobello road had a joint that I could get a good coffee, and since having started vaping, somewhere I could also grab my juice and gear. The area is home turf for me having grown up nearby in my mums little shop just up the road.
Could you talk us through the layout of the store, it’s got a chill out area downstairs and the bench upstairs, is that to promote a bit of a community vibe around the store?
It’s about proximity and about making strangers talk to each other. That is pretty much what we grew on around here, chats over coffee and Portuguese tarts, everyone knew everyone. We want to bring that feeling of community back in our own little way.
Why did you choose to mix Coffee and Vaping in one store?
I’ve always been a bit of a caffeine fiend so the coffee had to be special, we don’t go for the ‘but it’s only coffee’ attitude, we wanted to do it properly. We feel that a great espresso demands a certain level of attention as it really translates to the cup. Ultimately, it’s about a need for quality in all the things we do. Dark Arts coffee roast our beans and they really know their work, we couldn’t have picked a better roaster to work with.
Have any of your coffee customers moved on to Vaping because of the store?
We run the coffee bar as a separate entity but yeah, we have had a few customers move from smoking over to vaping after a piqued interest on the ‘other thing’ that we do! Hah!
What advice would you give those who wanted to start Vaping?
Research and lots of it, talk to people who know what they’re talking about, ignore the hype and don’t let people tell you what’s good, discover it. Brick and mortars are usually the best way to get the info you need whilst being able to get hands on with the gear.
Talk us though a standard day at Cloud inc. Vapes…
Get in, open up, re-wick, make myself a brew, sit in the sun for 10 minutes and then spend the rest of the day saving lives!
Where do you see the Vaping industry in 5 years?
Hopefully more leniency and support through discussion. Is it dreaming to want to see a higher percentage of vapers to smokers? We’ve all got good work to do.
What would you like (if anything) to change about the Vaping industry?
We need to get out of the ‘sex sells’ mentality, we’re not selling motors for petes sake!
I’m also left feeling like, as an industry, we could be a little less elitist and a little more inclusive.
What are your thoughts/preparations for the impending TPD post May 2017?
The TPD Is a badly written and now historical document with no relation to the vaping industry as a part, let alone a whole. We’re going to keep up as long as we’re left to our own devices but I have to say, It’s insane the amount of misinformation that is cleverly filtered out to the lesser informed populous. It feels properly sinister…
Talk us through your current set up…
StabWood Metal Moose tube with a Stillare V4 half open. 6 wrap fused Clapton at .3 and away.
Do you have a favourite Simple flavor and if so why?
Given that I’m soon off for a holiday in the sun…I’d have to say tropical juice. Fruity and refreshing, perfect for a lazy day by the pool.
What’s next for Cloud Inc. Vapes?
We’ll see how we end the year. Big plans though, we want to get moving!