Photography by Jade Stephens and Paddy Geaney
Coffee lovers unite, there is now an official community dedicated to the glorious bean that brings so many of us life and joy. TheMonday Specialty Coffee is the latest initiative from Brisbane-based power-couple Alex Lawton and Tyler Hood. To mark the arrival, we headed to the launch of TheMonday at Reverends Fine Coffee and Bar in Fortitude Valley to see what it was all about.
Founders of TheMonday, Tyler and Alex say they began to really explore their underlying curiosity of the versatile and universally worshipped bean last year. Wanting to learn more about the beverages origins, the process' involved from seed to sip, the different styles and tasting notes, and most importantly, share it with their friends, they set out to create a community of like-minded fans. From novice to hardcore coffee aficionado, TheMonday is creating a community of coffee-lovers who regularly meet-up at new locations and venues, drink coffee, talk coffee and learn a thing or two.
On arrival to Reverends for TheMonday launch I received a drink token, a branded badge and a blank tag, prompting me to write my name and most embarrassing coffee order. Littered around the room were the likes of ‘Vanilla Lattes’, the cringe-worthy ‘Expressos’ and my ‘Cappuccino - no chocolate, no froth’ which was not only entertaining — and definitely made me feel like less of an idiot — but really opened up the room and urged people to engage with each other.
Batch brewed and espresso based coffees were served hot in simple white ceramic mugs and saucers or chilled in textured glassware and nursed attentively as TheMonday community mingled. The relaxed vibe of the rustic exposed brick cafe created comfort in the (mostly) unfamiliar event of drinking coffee past 6pm on a Monday night.
A selection of tasty gourmet burgers and bagels were made to order and helped fill the already brimming venue with further aromatic and visual delight. The launch also showcased tastings of Australian non-dairy milk producers Inside Outside Nutritious Goods with
alternative nut milk combinations, with crowd favourites banana blueberry almond milk and ginger and turmeric.
The evenings barista, Brandon Mallender was a crowd pleaser - tamping, frothing and pouring with swiftness and pizazz, interrupting his flow intermittently to silence the room with a thunderous projection of ‘“who ordered the halloumi bagel!?”, after a few muted moments the chatter and conversation resumed to the previously undisturbed boisterous levels.
The staff were friendly and fantastic, answering all coffee related questions and educating on the difference between the specialist selective Ethiopian dark and bold ‘Dimtu’ and the light, floral Ethiopian ‘Keffa’,going into specifics with those wanting to delve deeper, with no question too lowbrow.
As the night began to wind down and consumption was slowing to a responsible end, the winning tickets collected their prizes, ranging from a selection of coffee beans, cafe coupon books and limited edition Reverends Coffee pins supplied by the cafe and TheMonday Specialty.
The general friendly and welcoming atmosphere of this event left full-bodied notes of excitement and a lingering curiosity of discovery for this community to grow and take off in all of us.