November marks four years since Andrew Kelly sold North Melbourne cafe Auction Rooms and its takeaway arm Counter to St Ali to focus on Small Batch, his coffee-roasting business headquartered nearby, in Little Howard Street.

In 2020 he and his team are returning to the cafe game. They’ve already opened the petite Small Batch Cellar Door in North Melbourne, and soon they’ll follow up with Small Batch by Small Batch, a two-storey cafe and production kitchen on Little Lonsdale Street.

The doors may be closed, but baker Charlie Duffy, formerly of Tivoli Road Bakery is already at work here making pastries and sandwiches for Cellar Door, including wattleseed pains au chocolat, spelt croissants, salted choc-rye cookies and canelés. On the savoury side, look out for cheesy twists containing L’Artisan raclette and gruyere plus a hint of fermented chilli, and sandwiches on Baker Bleu bread.

Similar fare will be available at Small Batch by Small Batch when it opens in July, alongside house wine, kombucha, kefir, mead, pickles, sauerkraut and other fermented products, much of it made upstairs.

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Updated: June 12th, 2023

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