“Yep, there’s a lot of work to do be done.” Andrew Kelly is not exactly worried, but the vastness of the task that lies ahead of him has definitely sunk in. We’re at the site of Kelly’s new CBD cafe, the previous tenants of which was a convenience store/internet cafe. He has just a few months to transform the space in time to open the doors to customers in early March 2014.
Kelly’s as yet unnamed venue will serve up filter coffee and Smorrebrod (Scandinavian open sandwiches), with a focus on quick takeaway for busy city workers. “We want to take filter coffee out of the land of the precious, slow cafe environment,” he says. The cafe will serve as a showcase to Kelly’s coffee roastery Small Batch, as well as a sister venue to his North Melbourne venue Auction Rooms. As the recipient of The Keys, Kelly is receiving a helping hand from a series of leading industry mentors, who will guide him through the many facets behind opening a new venue.
They’re all the details you might not consider when you sit down to breakfast at a cafe – how many steps your order takes from when you place it, how many customers are assigned to each staff member, and who the farmer is of the eggs you’re about to eat. In the fourth episode of Broadsheet and Bank of Melbourne’s video series, Kelly visits Nathan Toleman at Top Paddock to talk operations and supply. With his extensive background in cafes and hotel management, it’s the stuff that Toleman lives and breathes. “You’re never going to get it right straight away,” says Toleman. “The most important things we’ve found are to get the people and systems in place that you need around you to make it work.”
Check out bankofmelbourne.com.au/thekeys for more small business operations and supply advice.