For Trevor and Steve Simmons, a great coffee goes beyond an innovative machine, the everlasting soymilk debate or even a world champion barista. It's about understanding the product, where it comes from, how to get the best out of it – qualities that ring true in their latest operation, Industry Beans.
Set on the corner of Fitzroy's Rose Street, the Simmons brothers (with the help of designer Matt Rawlins of Figureground Architecture) have transformed an open warehouse into a resourceful space that offers everything from a lively cafe, an ambitious roastery, an upstairs cupping lab and expert coffee training facilities.
“After running Penny Farthing Espresso, we started getting itchy and wanted to create our own sustainable coffee environment,” Trevor explains. “We’ve always been passionate about coffee so wanted to see how far involved into the process we could really get. Steve initially quit his engineering career and I quit working for anyone else to get this all started.”
What originally started as a dream concept is now a blossoming operation, and after acquiring the facilities to really step up their game, Industry Beans is churning out some top-grade product. Customers can expect intriguing flavours sourced anywhere from the Sumatran hills to the plantations of Panama, on a daily list featuring nine different origins.
“Like a wine or cocktail list, we want people to be able to have a menu in their hands so they can make a decision based on whatever flavours they feel like on the day,” says Simmons. “Each variety has been chosen for a purpose and something with light cherry notes may be perfect for pour over or a filter based coffee, but something with heaps of body and richer notes is obviously better suited for the espresso machine.”
The highly considered approach doesn’t end there either. Determined to keep everything in house, Trevor and Steve will be serving homemade bread, butter and chocolate. Fresh fruit juices will be bottled on premises and a new Industry Tea brand is set to follow.
Working with their Penny Farthing head chef, Shaun Landman, the breakfast and lunch menu is also as enthusiastic and ambitious as the coffee. Here, all ingredients will be sourced locally and Simmons insists that there won’t be a freezer in sight.
“Everything is being vac sealed and we're using sous vide methods. We want to create the best cafe food we can without turning into wankers.”
Dishes will include beetroot rostis with smoked eel, tarragon, watercress and crisp samphire, house-cured salmon on char grilled corn bread, cornichon oil, grape fruit and shallots, along with a brioche bunny burger served with veggie crisps.
Those who are simply after a new hangout shouldn’t feel unwelcome either. Excited to include any interested customers, Simmons insists that unlike other exclusive locations around town, Industry Beans is suitable for all. “We hate isolating anyone – we’re always going to serve decaf or soy and mocha with honey happily,” says Simmons. “We’re here to offer a product and offer it well.”
Warehouse 3, Corner Rose & Fitzroy Streets, Fitzroy
(03) 9417 1034
Mon to Fri 7am¬–5pm
Sat & Sun 8am–5pm