Food and Drink
Posted by Melanie Dimmitt
28. Jan, 2014
On the sunny afternoon of their opening, Sam King and Sonam Sherpa are busy. Wielding speedy-yet-artful barista skills, the good friends take orders, charm their patrons and expertly clear and wash an infinite flow of well-drained coffee mugs.
Smith Street locals, lured by the aroma, upbeat tunes and friendly vibe, have already embraced Place Holder – enjoying their cuppas and casual chat while perching on street-side stools.
The buzzing hub will occupy Neometro’s Nine Smith Street for 12 months, alongside art gallery SLOPES and 300 acres urban garden, before it transforms into one and two-bedroom apartments. Rather than letting the site lay dormant, Neometro approached “passionate people making a valuable contribution to Melbourne,” says director Jeff Provan.
Jumping at the offer, former next-door neighbours Sam and Sonam designed and built their café. “We wanted a space that was going to be really welcoming,” says Sam. They see the temporary posting as a good opportunity to create and test-drive their brand. “We’ve been in the industry for a few years,” he says – the pair previously worked together at Richmond’s Top Paddock.
Accompanying their brews – hailing from locally roasted beans – is a scrumptious selection of cookies and slices from Tom Boy and Top Paddock. Their menu will evolve over time.
“Our goal is to have a friendly coffee spot where we get to know everyone and everyone gets to know us. We want to have an open dialogue as we bring people to life with their first cup of the day.”
9 Smith St, Fitzroy
Mon – Fri 7am – 3pm
Sat – Sun 8am – 3pm
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