At Commonplace Coffee Brewers in the Melbourne CBD, Owner Nicholas Ma says the customer experience comes first.
“We try to add value and give back to the community rather than only focusing on business and making a lot of money,” Nick says. “Even in our name, we wanted to create a ‘common place’ that was welcoming and grounded, not too pretentious.
“We focus on our customers, forming a connection with them and giving them control of what they can drink. We discuss with them how they want their coffee made and what flavours they enjoy, rather than having a set recipe.”
Commonplace caters to these different tastes through a range of Toby’s Estate single origins prepared across multiple methods, including batch brew and Hario V60 filter.
“I previously ran a café in Collins Street where I formed a connection with [Toby’s Estate’s Mirko Bonmassar]. When I was looking to open Commonplace, I thought: ‘Where can I get great coffee for good value that I can extend to my customers?’ Toby’s really filled that need for us,” Nick says.
“We sat down and discussed what I wanted, where I was heading, and what I wanted to focus on, and built our relationship from there.”
Mythos One and Mahlkönig EK43S grinders sit on the bar next to a La Marzocco Strada AV, all customised with a white powdered finish to match the café’s décor. Toby’s Estate’s Brunswick blend is run for milk-based drinks.
“The blend is really well balanced. When you’re running a house blend, you want to cover different types of drinkers and find something people want overall,” Nick says.
Commonplace’s customer-centric approach to coffee has paid off, with Nick saying he has formed strong relationships with his regulars, who he estimates are 60 per cent city locals,
20 per cent corporate workers, and the rest tourists.
“I’ve even had the chance to go out for drinks with some of our customers,” Nick says.
“It’s been so rewarding building these good relationships, meeting lots of people, and getting to know their life and what they do.”
Commonplace Coffee Brewers
104T/28 Rose Lane, Melbourne, Victoria, 3000
Open Monday to Friday 7am to 4:30pm, Saturday and Sunday 7am to 3pm
0411 438 917