January 29, 2024
Welcome to 2024. We’re here to help you kick-off the New Year right... with a supply of delicious coffee by Sydney heavy hitters: Mecca Coffee.
Truly one of the original pioneers in specialty coffee, the gang over at Mecca knows exactly what they’re doing. Always focused on maintaining close relationships with producers, roasting to excellence and rallying their coffee loving community – Mecca stays true to their industry values while evolving and taking on new challenges.
We spoke with Mecca Founder Paul Geshos about the challenges they faced when they first opened up shop, what it was like to be an early pioneer in specialty coffee and all the exciting things they’re planning for this year!
How did Mecca get started and did you face any challenges when you first opened?
Back in 2005, we wanted to bring the coffee culture from other parts of the world, like Scandinavia and the US, to Australia. While abroad we were blown away by the complexities of the coffee we were drinking. Beans from Ethiopia and Kenya were cleverly roasted to bring out their unique fruity and floral notes as a result of these roasters focusing on single lots, having a lighter roasting approach and working more directly with producers. You didn't see this as much in Australia at the time.
These experiences served as our inspiration when opening Mecca. However, the first year was tough. We were giving coffee away at times just to get customers to try filter coffee since it was a very new concept in Australia. Some days we wondered if we would have to close up shop. What got us by was the close knit community we built - a mix of industry and non-industry coffee enthusiasts who really 'got it' and were just as passionate about coffee as we were.
In. 2006, after making it through the first 12 months, we saw a shift in the business. We had some fantastic media coverage and became recognised in the industry which led to more steady trade. It was an exciting and rewarding time and we are lucky enough to still be working in that momentum today!
What sets Mecca apart from other roasters?
We are a small piece of the puzzle, so we do our best to honour the efforts of the full community of people working together to bring you delicious coffee every day. Our relationship with like-minded coffee exporters and distributors has given us a direct link to the farmers. We’ve worked with some of these producers for over a decade!
Mecca is an early pioneer of specialty coffee and is proud to stand by the likes of Market Lane, Reuben Hills, Seven Seeds, Campos and Allpress just to name a few. We have built a solid community not only within the coffee industry but hospitality as a whole.
We are also more than just coffee! 2023 was a big year of collaborations with brands such as Alberto's Lounge + Swill Hospitality, IWC Schaffhausen, Audio-Technica, Mountain Culture and. Hunter Candles. Our relationships throughout the chain, from farm to cup, are a force in building our Meccaverse.
Tell us about what's in store for Mecca this year? Any exciting or upcoming projects to notes?
We had a super busy 2023 - new product launches, new menus, new partnerships. The most memorable partnerships and activities involved a beer collaboration with our friends at Mountain Culture to create the beer Tireme Su and our release of a nitro cold brew RTD with our mates at Audio-Technica called Sonic Brew. We also released a coffee-infused candle with Hunter Candles for the holidays.
2024 will be a big year trying to build upon our efforts in 2023. The focus will be on reaching new markets, sharing the love outside NSW, collaborating with exciting brands and offering fun retail experiences at our locations in Alexandria and King Street in building our ever-growing community.
Our course, the primary function and why we are here is ultimately the coffee. Engaging in more coffee driven initiatives and events working with brands such as La Marzocco, The Barista League and participating at SCA - all to be revealed at a later date!
Mecca In The Wild!
Mecca’s headquarters in Alexandria was once a parlour for creatures of the night but is now a fully operational roastery and cafe housed in a grand industrial warehouse designed by Sydney architect Cameron Krone. Having opened its doors in 2011, they’ve been consistently serving up top-notch coffees, tasty food and hosting industry training sessions in their cupping room.
MECCA KING STREET CBD
Located underneath the iconic Grace Hotel in the middle of the city, Mecca King Street is where it all began. It started off as a simple espresso bar in 2005 and has evolved into ‘the place to be’ for busy office workers needing their fix. This compact cafe is the place to sample all of Mecca’s coffees and treat yourself to a quick lunch outside during your lunch break.
MECCA ALUMNI AND PARTNERS
Mecca has many wholesale partners throughout Australia that consist of not only cafes but restaurants and hotels as well. Visit these hotspots all around the country and make sure you order a cup of delicious Mecca coffee. The Ace Hotel in Sydney, Room 10 in Potts Point, Kaska Eatery in Ruschcut- ters and Sweet Brew in Darwin are just a few of their partners!
ESPRESSO & CAPSULE
SIGNATURE HOUSE BLEND
This very special espresso roast has been a staple in Mecca's cafes for a reason, it's a fantastic go to with milk or on its own. The Signature House Blend is an absolute crowd please - delivering balanced rich and deep notes that are complex and smooth.
Brazil and Papua New Guinea
Notes of milk chocolate, orange and honeycomb
Dose in: 21g
Dose Out: 40g
Time: 27-31 Seconds
MARCO ANTONIO DE OLIVEIRA
Dose: 20g to 340ml
Bloom: 50 mls agitate then wait 15 seconds
Pour: 2 lots over 2 - 2.5 minutes