After years of working in cafés for other people, Szymon Jagus saw moving to Gowrie in the Australian Capital Territory as an opportunity to go into business for himself. Common Grounds not only saw his ambitions come true but also helped him connect with his new neighbours and community.
“[The name] was my wife’s idea. We wanted to have a cheeky name associated with coffee that also describes our approach to hospitality – with that homely feel, where everyone can feel like they belong,” Szymon says.
“Very often we hear that our place feels like home. We have very friendly and approachable staff that are on a first name basis with everyone. We love when our customers bring their ‘doggos’ and kids, it feels like a one big family.”
The café is part of a small shopping mall, intentionally removed from the busier parts of town, so Szymon and his wife could create a little oasis.
“We are surrounded by nature, having two big ovals right next to the shop; 200 metres away you can meet kangaroos grazing on grass every morning,” Szymon says.
Since opening, Common Grounds has served the Campos Superior blend alongside the various single origins Campos has on offer.
“We strongly believe in Campos’ ability to deliver a very consistent product that the end customer will love. They know their game and had never let us down,” Szymon says.
“We get visits from the Sydney team quite often. They always give us great advice when it comes to novelties and have been supporting us in so many ways since the beginning. I would really recommend them as your roaster.”
The coffee bar features a La Marzocco Linea PB espresso machine, Markibar Izaga grinder for the Superior Blend, additional grinders for single origin and decaf coffees, and a PuqPress V2 tamper. “In winter we play around with batch brew made on Moccamaster and in summer we use Toddy buckets for our cold brew,” Szymon says.
“We started with the mostly older crowd that lives in the area, but as we get more and more popular, we see more young faces.
“It’s great getting to know your customers and knowing that what you do puts a smile on their face. If I made someone’s day better, even if my own is not going great, that makes me happy.”
4/1 Jeffries Street, Gowrie, Australian Capital Territory, 2904
Open weekdays 7:30am to 2pm, weekends 8am to 2pm
(02) 6291 7412