For the past few months the ground floor of my studio’s building in Rankins Lane has been a thrumming hive of mechanical activity while Nir Kalif and Issy Shaked worked at transforming the blank canvass of a former gallery space into their latest coffee destination. Finally, this past Monday, with the most final of touches applied, Nir and Issy proudly unveiled Manchester Press to the caffeine-mad denizens of the CBD’s Hardware precinct.
Speaking to Nir, it’s obvious that these guys seriously love their coffee and, even more so, creating unique oases in which to savour it. Without doubt Manchester Press will continue to enhance the fine reputation Issy and Nir first won with their Elsternwick venue, Loco Cafe.
Tucked away from bustling Little Bourke Street, Manchester Press is surprisingly spacious and tranquil – a prized rarity for inner-city cafes. It’s the kind of place you could be perfectly comfortable spreading out an entire newspaper without drawing irksome glares from your fellow patrons. The décor is fashionably distressed, rustic and warm. Weathered wood softens the predominantly white space while idiosyncratic pieces scavenged from scrap yards give the space its character.
The menu is small and simple (and features some excellent bagels), but with a cafe it’s the coffee that must matter most. And in this regard Manchester Press brings the same consideration to your flat white as they do to the welcoming surrounds – it’s top notch, well up to the rather stiff competition in the area.
8 Rankins Lane, Melbourne
(03) 9600 4054