Coffee @ ... Underground Coffee Company
Fusing industrial funk with a science lab vibe, Underground Coffee Company’s mothership Underground HQ and roastery wears its signature coffee cool and bad assery on its sleeve.
The iconic second home (following the earthquakes) of the city’s only hot air roaster is easy to spot with the sun shining off its all-glass Durham Street frontage and its eye-arresting street art mural, courtesy of Buff Monster (look for the silver fern flag-waving pink Cyclops ice-cream).
Inside, buzz-inducing blends, air-roasted to perfection on the daily, are dispensed by a retro-glam espresso machine and flanked by curved steel tables, serpentine shiny copper piping, exposed bessa blocks, mad-professorial cold-drip coffee glassware, numerous exotic plants, and the industrial heft of hard-core coffee wares.
It’s a warehouse conversion designed with a ‘mi casa, su casa’ ethos that invites exploring – particularly the engine room where, mercifully muffled by safety glass, a 35kg Sivetz Hot Air Roaster fills the space with the heady aroma of coffee beans roasted right.
Over at The Colombo, sibling Underground South combines UG’s organic fair trade coffee sensibilities with a selection of daily-baked goodness – fresh from the oven cherry and dark chocolate muffins, golden pork and apple sausage rolls, cookies and a selection of slices (including a ‘I can’t believe it’s GF’ GF chocolate caramel slice) sit alongside a bangin’ blackboard menu that features the likes of mushroom and ricotta omelette, seriously addictive (especially when enjoyed between sips of a game-changing Beatnik espresso) cinnamon brioche French toast, and the soul-satisfying full breakfast, which combines free-range eggs with eco-barn bacon and a homemade seasonal chutney.
For those on the go, a satellite shop in the precinct’s food court is perfect for picking up a coffee on the fly, or refuelling and savouring some serious people-watching with a seriously good coffee.
190 Durham Street
0800 842 6333
The Colombo, 363 Colombo Street
03 943 7360