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Soap Bar Launderette & Cafe

Home > Melbourne > Cafes | Brunch | Coffee
by H. Clare Callow (subscribe)
A die-hard Melburnian who keeps being drawn away by luscious food and drinks. Be a pal and click the 'like' link below if you enjoy my article.
Published March 5th 2015
Fancy a coffee with your load of laundry?
The laundrette along Elgin Street has been through a few incarnations. When new owners took it over just over a year or so ago, it didn't look like much was changing. Looks were deceiving.

Soap Bar is a laundrette-cum-cafe which offers the kind of bohemian environment that has been missing in the area. Where do you go for a casual coffee and some free wi-fi, that you can wear your old jeans to and not worry about broadcasting some sense of style?
soap bar carlton, cafe carlton
A funky atmosphere.

There used to be a few places like this around Brunswick and Lygon Streets, but no more. The general gentrification of the area has got rid of the grunge and put emphasis on the hip. Soap Bar is bringing grungy back.

The most important thing, as always, is the coffee. If my laundrette coffee isn't good, it had better be cheap. Luckily at Soap Bar the coffee can compete with any fancy café. A variety of cakes are on offer to tempt you into snacking, and they looked sufficiently good that it was only with an effort I stayed away.

The best thing about Soap Bar though is its atmosphere. There's something terribly relaxing about a washing machine working away, and the gentle aroma of cleanly laundered washing rumbling away in the dryers is strangely comforting. The customers were a mix of share house inhabitants trying to sneak a load in and backpackers trying to steal wi-fi. It made drinking coffee and tapping away on a computer a lot less pretentious.

Soap Bar, I will be back.
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Why? Doing some laundry and need a coffee
When: 6am-11.30pm all days
Phone: 0488 847 627
Where: 63 Elgin Street, Carlton VIC 3053
Cost: $3
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