• Coffee Down Under

Service with Style

28 September 2017

By Rachel Northrop, Ally Coffee

Overnight, the Aussie model forever changed New York City coffee. The big apple’s favorite coffee haunts were long about the hang (think the fictional Central Perk from Friends or the real Life Café from Rent) more than the drink.

Over the last decade, local companies have been delivering better coffee and a better café experience—sourcing for terroir, roasting freshly, brewing with precision, remodeling spaces, and training staff as coffee artists. Then the Aussie model raised the service bar.

Australian coffee culture is decidedly espresso based, with milk drinks like the flat white dominating menus. The coffee, however, is only a small component of what defines a café as an Aussie style establishment. The attention to aesthetic detail and the focus on service are the cornerstones of Australian coffee’s American iterations.

Aussie owned and Aussie inspired cafes gained instant followings in New York because of their good looks and good attitude. While some Australian coffee businesses hire largely Aussie staff to add layer of authenticity and foreign appeal, New York’s Australian cafes all share a commitment to keeping things spic and span.

Any café can apply proven success of Aussie-level attention to detail. The city’s cafes are incessantly high volume, and no matter the quality of the product, the experience of buying and drinking it is downgraded if the space is dirty, disorganized, or in a state of disrepair. Aussie shops are uncompromising in maintaining neat and orderly shops, making customers immediately feel like they are walking into someplace special.

This feeling continues as customers interact with staff. Aussie style cafes are known for welcoming all, treating customers as guests, and making the coffee experience memorable. New Aussie coffee institutions like Bluestone Lane have demonstrated that New York, while it loves gourmet products and speed of service, also craves clean, comfortable spaces with reliable staff.

The Aussie model reminds rushed New Yorkers that coffee is something that can be taken seriously enough to be prepared by professionals in a gorgeous space, but not so seriously that it becomes confusing and uninviting.

New York cafes will always have their own flair, but all of the city’s diverse customers—tourists, artists, corporate leaders, service workers, students, and more—appreciate coffee that prioritizes service and takes pride in the cafe space.

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