Synonymous with its name, this no-nonsense roaster cum cafe in Melbourne, Australia, takes its coffee and interiors, seriously. Leanne Amodeo reports
When asked to explain the design vision behind Code Black Coffee, lead designer Katherine Kemp’s response is as fuss-free as her client’s brief. “The overall design was to set the stage for a serious no-nonsense approach to coffee.” Melburnians, after all, take their beloved beverage very seriously.
Fortunately, inner-city Brunswick’s newest addition to its lively café culture is good; with coffee to match. Code Black sits neatly within Zwei’s new fitout of an existing double fronted warehouse. It’s a clever insertion that houses the coffee roaster and café in one space and the client’s headquarters in the other.
Entering the public space may take patrons past the servery but their eye is immediately drawn towards the rear, where Code Black’s impressive 20kg coffee roaster resides. Situating the roaster in full display adds an element of theatre, but most importantly it signifies the quality and craftsmanship of the cafe’s product. After all, says Kemp, “Coffee is king at Code Black.”
The interior fitout plays an important role in reinforcing this message and through the use of rich, dark tones a simple, raw aesthetic is expressed. Stained OSB, black steel and concrete complete the material palette, which lends the industrial sensibility an elegant sense of composition. The fitout allows for easy movement and the arrangement of varying dining tables and standing tables attractively and functionally orders the 700sqm space.
What is perhaps the most appealing aspect of Code Black’s design, however, is its thoughtfully considered details. Volker Haug lighting designs punctuate the warmly hued interior, steel side tables are bent and bolted to a brick wall and OSB adds an element of patterning. Zwei has been sure to invest a sense of quality and craftsmanship on both a small and large scale.
Photography © Michael Kai