When Edition Coffee Roasters’ genre-busting cafe in Haymarket closed for a reset last June, its staff was suddenly at a loose end. Around the same time, a handful of Covid-struck businesses in Pyrmont were doing it tough. That’s when Edition co-founder Daniel Jackson had an idea: move the idle Edition crew across Darling Harbour and give the ailing inner-city neighbourhood’s hospitality scene a lift. Enter Malo’s Mill.
“We opened because we felt like there was a real need in Pyrmont again. Because a lot of places closed during Covid and a lot of places are still closed,” Jackson tells Broadsheet.
He’s quick to point out Malo’s Mill isn’t a spin-off of Edition’s Haymarket flagship, which reopened in December. But there are some strong ties regardless. Edition’s omni-roasted blends – beans roasted to suit any brewing method, from espresso to filter – and single-origin varietals are brewing and (depending on the day) head roaster Taku Kimura might even be behind the espresso machine.
But unlike Edition’s high-concept panache, Malo’s Mill has a more relaxed brief of “stuff you can eat every day”.
“Edition is Scando-Japanese fusion, which has a very specific, high-end kind of vibe,” says Jackson. “[It] is also more of a go-to or a destination. With Malo’s Mill, we just wanted it to be a daily cafe where you could come for a coffee and a pastry [baked by Textbook Patisserie]. My background is also Room 10, so I wanted it to have that old-school feel.”
That means sourdough toast with house-made jam, eggs-your-way, and stellar bacon-and-egg rolls. Sweeter fare includes a vegan coconut chia pudding with maple granola, fresh mango and lemon balm, and ricotta pancakes on weekends. For lunch there’s a caesar salad with baby cos, poached chicken and bacon crumb. And a grilled cauliflower salad with beetroot hummus and mixed herbs.
A cracking all-day toastie section nods to Japan with a vegetarian Golden Curry-filled option – though “it’s becoming a thing to throw bacon on it”, says Jackson.
The space was formerly an Italian joint in dire need of a refresh. “It was really weird. Like, I can’t even describe it,” says Jackson, before attempting anyway. “It was a pale-green, salmon-pink and grey mottled effect. I guess they tried to make it look old school?”