Cafes and Restaurants » Hobart Cafes
It’s billed as “a team of coffee pro’s doing what we do because we love it. Here you will find all things coffee done the way we like it. We think you will like it too. :-).” It’s 3rd Wave coffee in Hobart so I had to try, but I left feeling a little bit underwhelmed. The Cupping Room is so close yet so far to being a great ambassador for the specialty coffee movement.
The setup is great. A huge warehouse with room for plenty of beans, roasters, a cupping station and a great open feeling cafe. The fit-out is well done, great furniture, some classy light fittings and some nice street art keeping the atmosphere light. There is a huge blackboard listing around 50 single origins that are stocked with the available beans highlighted. Taking this classy setup down a notch is the gold stencil of “The Slayer” on the back of what is a beautiful looking piece of hardware. Tacky.
The service though is left lacking, the decision not to provide table service confuses me at any cafe. But here, when the product is a new way of experiencing coffee which the public is not familiar with, it is all but criminal.
Specialty Coffee is complicated and confusing but at the same time it is very rewarding for the drinker. The price of a great cup of coffee is downright cheap, but someone new to the experience just needs a little pushing. A specialty coffee menu (like a good wine list) can be intimidating and an uninitiated customer just wants a latte or a flat white. They don’t care about the Tanzanian Peaberry or the Mexican HG Chipas. But with a little staff guidance they could become an easy convert.
The biggest let down though, was the execution of the coffee. To be fair, my double espresso a Tanzanian Peaberry was good. Rich fruit flavours with a hint of bitterness. The 2 lattes on the other hand were a disappointment. The first latte was well presented, but the milk was watery, completely lacking the creamy richness which I expect from a good coffee shop. I suspect some of this is to do with the milk itself, I spotted a bottle of Pura Full Cream on the counter.
Finally, I made my way again to the counter for a take-away coffee to make my walk through Hobart bearable. A take-away latte with the Mexican single-origin didn’t seem like too difficult a request but you can imagine my surprise when it was turned down. Apparently they don’t make take-away coffees through the Slayer and the waitress told me perhaps that they would if there weren’t so many coffees up. Apparently people drinking take-away coffee don’t deserve the same choice as dine in.
It didn’t matter, the latte was passable, definitely not good. It had an earthy flavour and the same watery milk. I walked away with sub-par coffee and the opportunity for the Cupping Room’s coffee to redeem itself was wasted.
I’ll be back to give it another go, but there’s other coffee in Hobart I hear is worth trying. So I won’t be rushing.
Thanks go to Nola for pointing me in the direction of the Cupping Room. Her review (with food) is here.You should follow me on Twitter.