Phil Brown: What might have bean – watching sadly as our favourite cafes disappear

Always a creature of habit, Phil Brown has been thrown completely out of his routine following the closure of some favourite coffee outlets.

Jun 03, 2024, updated Jun 03, 2024
Even the most popular of our cafes and coffee shops seem to be fading from view Photo: ABC

Even the most popular of our cafes and coffee shops seem to be fading from view Photo: ABC

We turned up at our favourite café last Saturday morning to find it closed. Not gone altogether – although there’s a lot of that going around at the moment.

It was merely closing weekends for a while to save money on wages, I guess. That puts us in a spin because we have a routine. But we quickly pivoted to another of the five or six in our area that we frequent. Luckily we have back up.

There have been quite a few café closures recently and I was devastated to hear that Mica in the Breakfast Creek precinct had closed due to financial difficulties.

We went there recently, walking from Racecourse Road along the Lorres Bonney Riverwalk to our reward – coffee and pastries at Mica. It was lovely. I’m hoping someone takes over that venue because it was hugely popular.

Our favourite bakery is closing too on account of the high cost of flour. I wish they had just passed on the cost to customers because I would happily have paid more for my French sourdough and fruit bagels.

These are first world problems I guess but still, we love our cafes and bakeries.

For us they are our community hubs. Once upon a time they say pubs were the same but pubs were, back in the day, mostly for blokes. I guess pubs and bars are still social meeting places for people but not for me – I don’t drink.

So, the rise of café culture has suited me down to the ground.

With the increasing number of people who have dogs nowadays cafes are also great places to take a pooch unless you happen upon a café that is not dog friendly. Which would be, frankly, outrageous.

So, any good café will have outdoor seating for dog owners or at least seating by the door where you can sit near to your fur baby.

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When we are all working from home we will begin our morning with coffee and punctuate the morning with another trip to the café and luckily, we have two that are both a five-minute walk away.

I’m hoping they are both financially robust. They are certainly community hubs where we meet folks from the neighborhood and pat pups while other people pat ours.

Café culture is now the fabric of our suburbs and that’s great. And we need to support them. Imagine if you turned up next week and found your favourite café closed? You would be like us the other day, bereft.

Although that passed quickly due to plunging caffeine levels in our bloodstreams. Desperation is the mother of innovation and we quickly shifted our allegiance and that allowed us to remain suitably caffeinated. Phew.



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