Two of our favourite people at the moment are Andrew Kelly of Auction Rooms and Small Batch roasting, and Mark Simpson of Design Office.
We have recently completed one of the most comprehensively thought through, detail focused installations for public space that we have had the privilege of working on, and though getting this project pushed through in the time frame was no easy thing, I am breathing deep and happy having just had a month away from the shop as a just reward for being done.
Look, on the surface, yes it’s just a cafe.
And yes, Melbourne has a few of these, so why bother spruiking this one in particular?
Well other than being a project that I sweated blood for and worked a raft of 18 hour days on, the level of consideration that has gone into the detail and crafting the user experience is genuinely unique.
We got to use a heap of lovely solid European Ash from FSC sources closely matched with custom pressed veneers – Every square inch of the beautiful Osmo oil finishes was hand rolled and rubbed back by yours truly. We specified and had made all the custom perforated metal components.
We almost drove the steel boys into an early grave with the most complex sink unit I’ve ever seen, made to house some of the cafe’s essential grinders while providing custom designed workstations for individual barista’s. All the signage and trolleys were custom rolled perforated metals – and that’s not to mention the modesty screen for the coffee machine… Why, you might well ask?
Fact is, the heart of this whole project is Andrews’ unflagging enthusiasm for drinking coffee in its naked smoky gloriousness – no sugar, no milk… Filter it is all the way.
So you can get a latte, but that’s not the point of this place – it is more than a cafe, it really is an attempt to provide a genuinely different experience of our drug of choice.
It is a beautiful space, designed as a temporary thing, that could be transported if and when needs be… And the best thing is how the light plays through the room during the day, catching startling reflections of sunlight off the surrounding buildings making the hand rubbed transparent finishes glow softly as dusk falls and the gloom deepens.
Happy days people.