Melbourne Cafe Trends
1.The Simple and Stylish Cafe
Melbourne is unearthing the simple and stylish café. Patricia Café is an exciting new development in the Melbourne CBD as a café that only offers black, white and pour over filter coffee. Yet the three options are amazing using high quality blends.
In a jungle of coffee choice this café keeps it simple. Coffee beans are sourced from top coffee establishments around the city as well as a house blend by iconic Seven Seeds. If you choose to consume your coffee inside the café you are presented with a cleansing sparkling mineral water (a la wine tasting). The café itself has no chairs and tables but is standing room only. With stylish marble tops, artistic menu board, cool architecture and large windows welcoming natural light, Patricia Café hits the mark on high coffee fashion.
Bar Ampere is also a café of high coffee fashion with its tribute to last century futurist movement of Europe. Simple coffee and menu choices combine with ultra style when it comes to décor. Everything here is hip and stylish! How to describe a row of hands coming out from the wall with light fittings attached? How to describe some sort of vintage circuitry board on the wall? How to describe hip tables with draws containing cutlery? The logo is classic with the caption DANGER. MADNESS. This places oozes hip.
2.Single Origin Coffee from Identifiable Estates
Discernable consumers realise that single origin coffees are distinctive and worth paying slightly more for the experience. Strong, sweet, nutty. How do you like it? Personally I favour Honduras coffee (internationally a hit) but there are times I crave for Ethiopian or Tanzanian. My local café favourite often features Nepalese single origin.
But single origin is not just about country but also about identifying specific farms in those countries. Coffee fashion is to favour roasters who source small batches from identifiable farms. Like Market Lane Coffee baristas who have handed me information on the single origin farm associated with my coffee. Very cool.
3.The Distressed Communal Table
The communal table has become a feature of many fashionable coffee establishments. They create an opportunity for community and look fashionable. Melbourne features many a distressed communal table with classic styles and quality timber.
Stylish vases, fashionable flower arrangements and artistic pieces often adorn the communal table. Various types of stools are in vogue including colourful plastic stools in many Melbourne establishments. There are even communal table makers and designers who custom make communal tables for cafes. They can create that distressed look and character that is so appealing.
The Cornershop Café in Melbourne is a great example with a large custom made distressed table a fashionable feature of the café. Also often adorned with stylish flower arrangements. St Ali is another with communal greatness.
4.Coffee Cupping Sessions
Many of us enjoy a wine tasting session. Being asked by your barista to attend a coffee cupping session is fashionable. Join with coffee lovers in discerning the flavour, aromas, and tastes of various coffees. Tasting notes for coffee are very cool. Next time you visit your favourite café ask them if they have cupping sessions. Somewhat like wine you deeply sniff the coffee then swirl it around on the palate until the coffee spreads to the back of the tongue.
The coffee taster attempts to measure aspects of the coffee's taste, specifically the body (the texture or mouthfeel, such as oiliness), sweetness (the perceived sweetness at the sides of the tongue), acidity (a sharp and tangy feeling at the tip of the tongue, like when biting into an orange), flavour (the characters in the cup), and aftertaste. Since coffee beans embody telltale flavours from the region where they were grown, cuppers may attempt to predict the coffee's origin.
5.One Size Regular Coffee
Coffee purists will say that great coffee is tasted at its optimum in a smaller cup. The latte is still popular but there is trend towards less large milky coffees. With a double or triple shot you can still sustain flavour in a large coffee, but you lose out on the subtlety and complexity. If you want complexity it’s better to have less milk and more coffee.
Thus some serious establishments will only offer one size, which happens to be the regular size coffee. Some may think the one size coffee is about profit (ie more likely to order a second coffee) but really it’s about taste. Coffee fashion is to order a regular coffee rather than a large.
In vogue is the machiatto or piccolo, ie a stained coffee where there is just a drop of milk.