As a co-founder of design agency Studio Mazi, Elijah Makris has worked with his share of hospitality venues. And it spurred him to add something he saw as missing from the scene: a classic sandwich shop – one that melds a cool art and design aesthetic with a simple offering of “just, like, a dope sandwich”, he tells Broadsheet.
Of course, Adelaide has a few popular sandwich spots, including Just Down the Road, Bottega Bandito and Lucia’s Fine Foods, but Makris cites as inspiration Melbourne’s exploding sandwich shop scene, in particular places such as Hector’s Deli, Nico’s and Saul’s. “There’s a few spots in Melbourne that are popping off at the moment that are sort of the reference, but then [we also want to] make it more simple, like an everyday eat,” he says.
Next month, he and his Studio Mazi co-founder Saba Maghsoudi, together with new business partner Ben Pankhurst, will realise that vision at Pinco Deli, a slick new sandwich shop opening on Glen Osmond Road. It’ll serve sangas, pastries, coffee, and little else. “It’s pretty simple, but super high-level ingredients and the execution really well done,” says Makris.
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The trio has brought on chef Jarrah Gardener – who’s worked at the Scenic Hotel and has his own food truck, La Flame – to front the kitchen. “We brought him in to consult on the menu and help us out, and now he’s gonna be working there full-time,” says Makris.
Expect “pretty traditional Italian sandwiches” such as focaccias with salami, tomato, fior di latte, basil and chilli, or stacked layers of mortadella, salami, provolone, giardiniera, basil, tomato and pickled green tomato. There’ll also be ham, mozzarella and Neapolitan sauce on fluffy white bread, or pastrami with piccalilli, pickled onion, dill pickles, swiss cheese and “burger sauce” on sourdough, among a few others. Fillings will come from Marino Meat and Food Store and Schinella’s. There’ll also be pastries supplied by Prove Patisserie, and coffee by Pankhurst’s Croydon roastery Willow Bend.
With designers as owners, you can expect a schmick interior – one with “radical Italian” vibes, says Makris. “Pretty brutal but also pretty warm,” he continues. Think stone, walnut, and red plywood that nods to Memphis Milano, an Italian design group in the ’80s known for its postmodern furniture and use of colour, asymmetrical shapes, plastic laminate and terrazzo. It’ll be “a little bit weird, but really clean,” says Makris.
The team tested the concept out earlier this month at a pop-up at Croydon vintage shop Soda Objects, where they pumped out 150 sandwiches. “It was a mix of art and music and culture, which is what I think the cafe should feel like,” says Makris. “The whole vibe and aesthetic is super important to us. We want to tick all the boxes: on pastries, coffee, sandwiches, interior, music.”
Pinco Deli will open at 1/73-79 Glen Osmond Road, Eastwood in mid-July.