I have found my new favourite café in Melbourne – Flipboard Café – located near the top end of La Trobe Street, near the RMIT City Campus as well as the scenic Carlton Gardens. Architect Martin Heide, and interior designer Megg Evans, are the brilliant minds behind Flipboard Café, having seen the potential in the space between their studio – Brolly Design – and the rear of the jazz institution Bennetts Lane.
The cafe literally resembles a Jenga game – fit into a 20 square metre split level that Heide and Evans built themselves. There is so much fun seating all packed into such a little space. The highlight is definitely the outside row of cupboards at street level, where the doors open inwards to reveal cute little cubbyholes that seat two. Each little cubbyhole / booth comes with a “table” made out of recycled papers – these are uber cool and I want one in my house – as well as a beautiful filament light bulb to set the mood.
Inside, the café is all about wood and smart use of space for seating. There are wood panels that flip down to produce seating, as well as a meeting space / platform on the top floor that you access via the central staircase. Upstairs, the bench seating overlooks the bustle of La Trobe Street.
The coffee and food counter is located in a little corner with barista Lincoln Walker (ex-Wide Open Road) at the helm. Coffee is from artisan local roaster Joshua Bailey and the La Marzocco coffee machine is put to good use.
Flipboard Café offers a nice variety of food – there are baguettes made on site, as well quiches, pastries and soup. There is a selection of gluten free options and some sweet treats from Miss Si.
On this visit I ordered a latte and one of the pastries with egg, spinach and feta. The coffee had a great taste – sweet and nutty with the perfect amount of froth at the top and complete with swanky artwork. The little pastry was divine – the pastry was flaky, buttery and you just wanted to savour each bite. The filling was tasty and flavoured well, and I liked the hit of spice in the form of pepper. Together both the pastry and the coffee worked well together.
Flipboard Café has successfully utilised the minimum space that they have to create a quaint, fun and unique style of venue. It really is a life-size version of a play house with some great tasting coffee and tasty treats. The little booth/cubbyholes are a brilliant idea and a great use of space and makes for a fun experience.