Get to know Hercules, the face behind Auckland’s infamous loaf!

There’s a high chance you have seen this fine specimen pop up on your Instagram feed surrounded by glutenous goods.
He’s been a loyal member of the FAT community from day one.
Keep reading for an insight into his culinary world and his journey with FAT.

Herc, you’ve been a FAT regular for over a year now, can you give everyone a head up on how you discovered us and how your experience has been so far?

A good friend of mine introduced me to FAT after I’d been out of the country for about 6 months. The idea of working out outdoors immediately took my fancy, but there was definitely something a little intimidating about rocking up to FAT for the first time without knowing anyone. I only say that as Auckland can be a bit cliquey but i was made to feel comfortable pretty quickly thanks to the friendly faces.

Being a bread connoisseur, you must smash through some serious carbs! Are you someone that keeps a close eye on their diet or are you someone that exercises so that you can enjoy food to it full potential?

(laughs) Only when I’m trialing new flavours do I actually eat sourdough. A lot of carbs are consumed over that period of time. To be honest, I’ve never really tracked what I eat for long periods of time. I feel through my line of work I’ve gotten a pretty good understanding of how to look after myself, but I never restrict myself from indulging. I try not to look at foods in black and white, good or bad, but better or worse.

I'm confident I’m not the first to say this but you have the most unique name (laugh)! “Hercules Noble” - Hercules alone, someone very well known in Greek and Roman mythology ; and a very honourable surname to top thing’s off….Can you talk us through your family history and background?

Sorry to disappoint but there’s no Greek blood haha. It’s a name that I used to be super shy about. I was never the biggest kid in my class and I always felt a little embarrassed. It’s only really been in the last few years that I’ve become confident enough in who I am and what I stand for to use the name Hercules. I come from a family of creatives so i guess my parents wanted to give me a name that people would easily remember. You know, a name that helps you get your foot in the door.

You are essentially a chef by trade catering for Birthdays, weddings, dinner parties and we have had the pleasure of getting you involved with two of our community events. Talk us through a normal day on the tools and how your relationship is with food.

I haven’t always worked freelance. It’s only been for the last few years. And in that time I’ve really fallen back in love with food. Some people are just meant to work in professional kitchens their whole lives. I’m not someone who thrives in that environment. I think it's because I constantly need to be creating, not repeating the same day in day out. And catering for different events or dinner parties in different locations is great for that. I never seem to have the same day at work.

It’s super important to network in Auckland because it's very tight knit. FAT’s actually been great for this. I'm constantly meeting new people that I would otherwise have nothing to do with.

How do you motivate yourself to exercise?

Ex-girlfriends... that’s a joke. That ain’t healthy. I don’t want to become a big gym junkie and blow myself up out of proportion, but I want to be in good shape. It kind of sounds arrogant but I want to be comfortable in my own body. Alongside feeling good, I’m pretty sure that’s why most people exercise, isn’t it? That can mean different goals for different people.

Any advice for people still hesitating on coming to FAT?

It goes back to what I said before, Auckland can be cliquey, so it can be super intimidating rocking up to a class without knowing anyone. But I’ve never gotten that vibe. Working out outside, instead of in a gym, makes a big difference too. Whether it's a sunrise session or peak summer evenings, FAT’s difficult to beat.

I have a gym membership, with access to all sorts of classes, but I haven’t been to one in over a year. When you find something you like, you stick with it. Man’s sticking with FAT. Give it a go. Hard to beat the social side of FAT too.

Where do you look for inspiration? This could be food or fitness related.

It’s a classic millennial/genZ answer, but I get a lot of inspiration of YouTube. Thousands of hours of food videos logged up.

I've also tried to tighten up what accounts I follow on social media. We all know how anxious or inferior social media can make us feel, so I follow just a few fitness and food accounts for inspiration.

Lastly, how does one get their hands on your loaf ?

(Laughs) Just DM me on instagram or stay tuned to my IG stories to see when I’m baking. I haven’t been baking as much as I’d like to in the last few months, but it's always a nice thing to do when I get the chance. Receiving lovely feedback from buyers really is such a good feeling.