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Burleigh Co-Op

Burleigh Heads has absolutely come alive in the last couple of years with epic eateries and beachside bars popping up all over the place.

The locals are loving it, everybody else is talking about it and we are 100% on board the Burleigh’s the best train.

If there was one thing missing in a suburb filled with good vibes and even better people though, it was an eatery centred around a sense of community and here we are discussing the team of locals who have now taken up that space.

Burleigh Co-op opened their doors today (Monday March 4th) and the sweet little venue already has a huge following, which doesn’t surprise anyone in the least.

The newbie is the work of a gang of folks whose names you no doubt know, including the Hotel Miami crew, the legends at Granddad Jacks, the guys at Lost Boys Barbers, food extraordinaires Fingers and Bones Catering and Elki Blue Jewellery.

They’ve taken over the spot where much-loved Burleigh Social once lived after quickly seeing the hole it’s absence left for the hungry locals.

The bones of the building remain the same but the fitout is all sparkly and new with a whitewashed slash industrial vibe perfectly at home amongst the potted greenery, tangled trellises and a little bench style situation covered in vines.

Inside, glossy white tiles line the back wall, which is where you’ll see the chefs working their magic and you may sit inside to watch them do just that or outside in the prettiest of courtyards.

It’s relaxing, easy on the eye and, well, perfectly Burleigh.

The menu is also one of the best around with plenty of breakfast slash lunch dishes you’ve never laid eyes (or tastebuds) on before.

The Zucchini Waffles are a taste sensation with a sunny side egg (best name for a food-related thing), mixed shoots, chilli sour cream and Parmesan snow (also epic). It’s a big old dish that’ll satisfy you for a very long while.

The Brick Lane Bombay is spice-fried potatoes, flashed spinach, fried egg, coriander, spring onion and lime. You want to eat it just after reading that don’t you. One of the best brunch dishes in the world. Big call, no lie.

Zucchini Waffles

There’s also an array of bowls filled with fresh, nourishing goodness and while we’ll certainly be sampling all of them, first up we’d recommend the Green Papaya Salad because fresh hot smoked tofu, rice noodles, loads of herbs, peanuts, crispy shallots and Chili and lime dressing. All of the flavours.

Oh let’s also discuss the Falafel Fritters with pickled red cabbage and caraway seeds, turmeric cauliflower hummus, barley tabouli and a seeded cracker. Yep.

Every dish deserves a mention but we can’t give away all their secrets.

Green Papaya Salad

The coffee is by local faves Social Espresso so you know a sweet, smooth brew is on the cards and all the produce on offer is local because showcasing our stunning city is what Burleigh Co-op is all about.

From the owners to the eats, everything about the place is part of the community, co-operative vibe Burleigh knows and loves.

So, after all that, obviously the only thing left to do is get down to Hibiscus Haven and get involved in the goodness.

Happiest days.

Words and photos by Kirra Smith.

LOCATION: 2 Hibiscus Haven, Burleigh Heads
HOURS: 6am until 3pm daily

Hotel Miami

How good is making new friends in a sweet, good time space while pretending to work but really just watching animal docos? So good, gang.

In an (un)surprising turn of events, you can now do all of those things at the Coast’s sweet new co-working and events space in the suburb that may just be our new fave – Miami.

The gist is this. Lemana Lane is a kind of urban, cool kids paradise that was once only home to mechanics and warehouses hording who knows what. Now though, it’s a place you definitely want to be, what with the recent opening of Hotel Miami and a coming soon gin distillery.

Hotel Miami’s creators realised the areas potential far before the rest of us, nabbed themselves a warehouse space and filled it with all kinds of goodies. There’s velvet couches, handmade desks (ask ‘em how that went down) perfect for Insta-snaps, a dartboard and best of all, a Yamaha parked right in front of a neon sign that reads “fuck yeah”.

Oh and there’s a photo studio too. See, good times.

The idea was to open a space that would allow co-owner Nick to escape from the confines of his bedroom and a cat whose actual name is Winston Smushface.

Jokes. It was so Nick, along with his fiancé Jessie (the boss) and mate Darran, could create a place to hang out with other creatives, “work” on their various other businesses and create a fun little Miami community. They adapted a community event they used to attend in Venice Beach where local businesses would come together and showcase their goods while also making rad new friends.

The point is, you can rent one of those handmade desks for a day or on a fulltime basis (recommended for bulk good times) and there are upstairs offices up for grabs too.

The photo studio can also be hired for any fun projects you’ve got going on and there’s super speedy Internet and everyone’s other favourite thing – air conditioning.

As of April 6th there’ll be an event on the first Friday of every month (dubbed First Friday to make writing about it easier) that’ll showcase local artists and finally bring Gold Coasters the live music we need and deserve.

Whether you’re in the market for a new workspace or not, get down there and check it out, the crew are keen to meet all the like-minded creatives they can muster.

And they’re not bad at hilarious banter either.

LOCATION: 1/49 Lemana Lane, Miami

Words and photos by Kirra Smith

Granddad Jacks Distillery

In what may just be the happiest news of 2018, a gin and whiskey distillery will roll open its doors in a few short weeks and we could not be more into it.

Granddad Jacks Distillery has been in the works for what feels like four years to those of us who love both gin and whiskey a little too much. In reality it’s only been four months but the wait is almost over.

On August 24th, the industrial-style Miami distillery will open for the good folks of the Gold Coast and, it’s certainly a cause to celebrate. Found on Lemana Lane, the distillery has taken up in what used to be a mechanics workshop and the transformation is pure magic.

Father/son team and owners Dave and Luke Ridden (along with the lovely Jess) scoured the Gold Coast in search of iron beams and the like to build a space that fits perfectly in Miami’s backstreets. Steel-inspired high tables with copper stools stretch down the centre of the room and two of the coolest leather couches we’ve ever seen make for a little chill spot at one end (if they go missing forget you read this). A day bed along one wall is lined with colourful cushions and underneath a mural proclaiming ‘too busy for bullshit, too tipsy to care’ and that, friends, is our new life motto.

Above the bar, an exposed brick wall boasts a painted portrait of the man himself, Granddad Jack, whose face peers out over the whole space, keeping an eye on you and your whiskey-fuelled shenanigans. There are wine barrels placed artfully about and the cruisiest of cruisers, decked out in Granddad Jack’s signage, is parked up the back. Oh and the main affair, a huge copper still sits at the back pumping out all the tasty booze. Love you.

So who is this Granddad Jack your new favourite watering hole is named after? Well, he’s a New Zealand born lad whose hard work and sharp mind allowed him to pay a huge family debt singlehandedly at the ripe old age of 14, that’s who. Luke, his great grandson, adopted the same hard working, ‘too busy for bullshit’ attitude and here we are, just a humble beachside city with our very own distillery. What a time.

Granddad Jack’s will sell only their own styles of both gin and whiskey and they’ll have a few varieties of each including what they call a ‘navy strength’ gin that’s 58%. Gimme.

There’ll be no food available on site but, hooray, you can BYO whatever you like so it’ll be a cheese platter and gin party for us thank you very much.

The epic space is also available for events including birthdays, engagement parties and wedding receptions and there was even a secret Sofar Sounds gig there recently. So much room for activities.

Okay we’re done and so very excited. Keep August 24th free, you won’t want to miss this one.

LOCATION: 43 Lemana Lane, Miami
HOURS: 10am until midnight Wednesday to Sunday

Words and photos by Kirra Smith

Mitch Roberts and Hayley Tucker

They’re the delightful pair behind your sweet, lifesaving cuppa every morning so, for Mitch and Hayley of Social Espresso, let’s all take a minute to give thanks.

The clever couple started their business just a few short years ago and, in that time, have amassed a huge following of loyal Gold Coasters in love with their unique blends.

We sat down for a chat with Mitch and Hayley about what it takes to create a brand new coffee blend (yes it’s a lot of coffee) and how they came to be stocked in so many locally loved cafes. 

How long have you been Gold Coast locals?
We moved from WA to the Gold Coast about five years ago now for Hayley’s work at the time. Fell in love with it immediately and very quickly made it our home.

What do you love most about living in our beachside city?
We are both from small coastal towns so we love that it has beautiful beaches and that laid back coastal vibe but there is also a great buzz! There is an awesome cafe and restaurant scene (we are both foodies) and so much growth and opportunity for business. We feel there is a great sense of community here where startup businesses are encouraged and small businesses support each other and work together and that’s pretty special!

Tell us how your business, Social Espresso, came about?
Mitch: I’ve always worked around coffee and while on a surf trip through Central America I visited some coffee plantations and my real interest in coffee began. When I moved back to Australia I began deepening my experience as a barista. From there it progressed to managing cafes. When we moved to the Gold Coast I had the goal of eventually starting my own business. I started working for several cafes and I felt there was a gap for local coffee with a strong focus on service and so I just started learning everything I could and took the leap.

What’s the process of creating such a unique blend?
It’s quite a journey the coffee bean takes from crop to cup. But keeping it short and simple; we start with an idea of a flavour profile we want to achieve. We generally find the most crowd pleasing is a full body with smooth caramel and milk chocolate sweetness and a slight berry or dried fruit acidity. We source a variety of beans from around the world and sample them through a process called cupping. Here we look for different characteristics in each bean, some offering body, some sweetness, others a fruity acidity. From there we build the flavour profile through these layers to give our drinkers the best experience

Why do you think people grew to love it so quickly?
It took time and lots of trial and error to come up with a few blends we are really proud of. We had the Gold Coast market in mind and are constantly asking the public what they look for in their daily brew. I think that’s the most important thing, keeping the end consumer as top priority and not getting too carried away with trying to be too different. We also make sure we work with good machinery and train our baristas thoroughly in weighing and timing each shot in order for them to deliver consistently delicious coffee every time.

What does a normal day look like for the two of you?
Starting bright and early serving coffee in our coffee bar in the Burleigh industrial area. We open from 5.30am to 10.30am for the morning rush – it’s our favourite way to start the day – chatting to our regulars and having a few laughs, networking and solving the problems of the world. Once that shift is done we then pack both cars up, split ways and pop into each of our cafes with their weekly delivery. Mitch looks after all barista training so he may have a few of those booked in each week. The rest is filled in with time at the roastery, machine maintenance, sales enquiries, packing online orders, marketing and back end admin. It’s just a two-man band so we do it all. 

How do your beans come to be brewed by some of the most loved cafes across the Coast?
We feel extremely lucky to work with some of the top cafes on the coast. We have formed great relationships in our coffee community and have been lucky enough to get most of our business through these friendships, customers and word of mouth. Service is a priority for us; we make sure we are in our cafes each week checking that everything is running smoothly. We really love what we do and I think that’s the key to a successful business.

What else is involved in the business we might not be aware of?
We partnered up with our friend Jeremy at Raw Earth Organics to start our own cold brew company, Two Amigo’s Cold Brew. It’s really taken off nicely and we are stocked in several cafes, bars, restaurants, markets and supermarkets throughout the coast. That’s been an exciting little venture and one that we are hoping to keep growing.

What’s the plan for 2019 for the two of you?
Further growth hopefully in both Social Espresso and Two Amigo’s cold brew. There are still so many areas we would love to branch into. And a holiday! It’s been a while.

Tell us your favourites on the Coast…
Beach: We live right on Talle Creek, so we feel like that’s our little local sanctuary. But our favourite beach has to be Cabarita. For Mitch it’s wherever there is surf.}Cafe: This is a hard one, it’s a little like asking who your favourite child is. Obviously we love all our Social Espresso cafes! But depending on what mood we are in, we usually can’t go past breaky at Cafe Caribou. Cafe Dbar also do a great feed and they have incredible views! Mitch loves a pie on the go at Fuel Bakehouse or on treat day a coffee and donut at D point 10…if you haven’t tried one of their donuts, you haven’t lived! We are also really excited for our newest partnership, Burleigh Co-op who’ll be opening their doors in a few weeks!
Restaurant: Etsu. We love Japanese and this place never disappoints! It’s our go-to when we need to treat ourselves (which is quite often) or impress visitors. We also love Baskk in Kirra. Epic food and cocktails and a really fun vibe.
How does your weekend usually look: Getting up early (cant sleep in to save ourselves), Mitch usually goes for a surf, I go to yoga and then meet at home to make a cold brew coffee, throw the mattress in the back of the van and cruise down the coast for an adventure. We love finding cool new cafes, a quiet beach to surf and relax and a nice spot to park up for the night (preferably with ocean views)

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