The thriving suburban Brisbane coffee culture scene scored a new caffeine hit this month with the opening of Mr Coffee's container venue at 23 Station road in Darra. I chance upon the eye -catching family-run venture while biking along purple, jacaranda-strewn paths on my way to work- a great early morning find.
With an organic, sustainable theme underpinned by all things coffee, lovely sister's Vanessa and Xiomara Murillo Vargas welcome me in and speak enthusiastically of the origins of the youthful, fresh space. A strikingly colourful Amazonian –inspired mural by talented local artist Paige Uamaki lines the back and side wall of the container. The painting houses Vanessa's poetic narrative – her words wind along the artist's richly patterned waves of long, streaming hair.
A regular fixture at farmer's markets for years and rooted in Colombia, this is Mr Coffee's first foray into the container coffee scene. Importers of specialty, custom-sourced coffees, the business runs coffee related courses and supplies coffees and beans with exotic names such as Agustino Forest, Cachipay, Ficha Tolima Volcano and Valle Umbrella.
The cafe serves assorted coffees, espressos, chai teas, organic drinking chocolate, juices, light meals and cakes. Shaded by a tall tree wound with lights, the container space is edged on one side by a partition of potted plants and houses stools and grass-green seating spaces custom-made from the wooden pallets the specialty coffees are imported in.
Owner / Director Mauricio Murillo, an experienced coffee 'passionista', sits under the tree with us and exuberantly extols the need for the diversification of the coffee trade in an over- subscribed market, the virtues of direct trade as opposed to fair trade, the benefits of coffee and sustainable practices. It's no longer just the coffee beans that are processed and utilised - a richly flavoured, dark treacle-coloured syrup drink is extracted from the fruit pulp, wood from the coffee trees is deftly formed into conjoined parquet-style strips and the innovative Koffeea Care cosmetic range is an upcoming by-product.
Under the Mr Coffee's banner, the UQ- affiliated biotechnology graduate with an extensive background in coffee and food offers barista courses, coffee appreciation courses and coffee cupping. For more information, check out Mr Coffee's online and find Mr Coffee's BTS on Facebook. For really good coffee served with friendliness and warmth, the coffee container is worth a visit.