The Final Step - Seven Nation Army Couldn't Hold Me Back
The Final Step is a non pretentious quality cafe in Murphy St just off Toorak Road in South Yarra. Recently they were visited by Jack White who proceeded to pick up the guitar in the corner and played a few riffs. Does it get any cooler? With a piano also in the cafe it has been known for the owner Ben Whitaker to break into a jam with customers. So their passion is not just for coffee and cuisine but also music.
By 8am this place was pumping and you could tell a faithful army of regulars.
In some ways it seems to differ from the usual South Yarra vibe of modernity and sophistication and is a place that is more hipster yet offers excellent coffee and food. Some describe it as a "hole in the wall" but I think its bigger. I counted seating for a possible 20 including outdoors.
Be impressed by a low dark ceiling, cool lamps, red stools, a ladder with plants, an awesome communal table in the middle of the room, and lime green walls. The menu boards are recycled cupboard doors.
Come here and find a passionate team who are passionate about their coffee. I asked the barista to give me his recommendation. So he poured two coffees for me. One was a shot of Columbian 'Gloria" coffee that had been roasted by The Final Step. It had intense flavour and highly recommended. The flavour was robust and hit the upper palate with cigar like notes. There was a great aroma about this coffee.
Then I enjoyed the house blend espresso which was also full of flavour. And not surprisingly as it was from Seven Seeds.
Having learned there was a limited manu due to limited kitchen space I wasn't sure what to expect. But The Final Step offers awesome bagels and cakes. I love a good bagel. The Smashed avocado, Meredith goats cheese and lime on a savoury bagel was superb.
What more could I want for breakfast? I don't care if the selection is limited, as long as it's good. And this was a worthy offering. The mixture comes in a separate bowl to smear over the bagel. Obviously here was quality avocado and goats cheese. The lime cut right through. But the combination of flavours was a winner.
Also noted was that the bagel came with a cool retro knife.
Again noted was the ability to buy coffee beans and the sign "we sell our muesli".
The staff here are upbeat, unpretentious and friendly. The Final Step speaks of 90% regular customers so they build relationship with customers. I found them engaging and willing to chat. Attention to detail was also excellent when it came to service.
Off the main strip this is another Melbourne "hidden gem".