The first thing that will strike you about the Hawthorn Common is the sheer size. “Every venue I’ve ever built sits inside this one,” says owner Danny Colls of the 500m2 space.
Owners Danny Colls (Café Racer and Silo by Joost) and George Sykotis (The Press Club, Jimmy Grants and Gazi) have created a cafe that is spacious without being sparse; one that makes you feel a part of their little community. The walls throughout the cafe are covered in black and white photos of those who have helped bring Hawthorn Common together: past clients, builders and tradesmen, along with Colls’ baby daughter, Poppy.
Hawthorn Common (thanks to its size) boasts a coffee roaster (they have three of their own blends), a herb garden, baking ovens, and a flourmill (they mill the flour and bake all their bread in-house). The cafe also cultures yoghurt and pickle, and preserves its own fruit and vegetables. Colls says the most important thing for him is that the food he serves has been made from scratch out of ingredients sourced directly from the producer.
“It’s about dealing with the direct source, because… as my money is hard to earn, I like it to go to the person who has been producing the product. You deal with the person with the passion for the product that they produce.”
Chef Stefano Rosi (ex-Café Vue and Vue du Monde) is responsible for the carefully selected menu. This includes items such as 'Carrots Five Ways' (pureed carrots, crudités carrots, tempura carrots, pickled carrots and a crispy carrot leaf), ox pie and cured trout. Colls has plans to utilise Rosi’s fine dining talents in the future by introducing degustation options for the dinner menu.
Saturday mornings sees early yoga sessions on the sunlit deck, followed by breakfast made with produce that supports local farmers and coffee roasted onsite. Hawthorn Common is a cafe with lots of character, a sense of community and a place you could waste hours of the day.