Mud Australia, run by husband-and-wife team James Kirton and Shelley Simpson, has stores across Sydney, Melbourne, London and New York. The latest store-cum-espresso bar opened in Double Bay in late October.
“There is a synchronicity between Mud and food,” Kirton says, “We like coffee – a lot – so we thought we would merge the two together and see what happens.”
The store, located away from the chaos of New South Head Road in the tranquil Kiaora Lane, was originally meant for a Miss Chu drive through. As a result, the site came with a beverage license and an inviting garden area. “We found this spot and thought customers could sit in a beautiful garden and use our products,” Kirton says.
The garden, which is “tropical meets country”, was designed by Richard Northcott from Fresh Prince. Flowers match the pastels of the ceramics. Herbs such as rosemary and lavender make the area picturesque and aromatic.
Kirton and Simpson worked with Piero Pignatti Morano (ex-Deus Ex Machina) and Richie Maxfield (ex-Little Marionette) of Two Chaps to consult on the opening of the cafe. Two Chaps has been a long-time favourite of Mud Australia because it is a short stroll away from its head office and ceramics studio in Marrickville. Coffee is supplied by Two Chap’s own Blind Coffee Roaster, and tea by organic Bondi brand, Mayde Tea. It is served in delicate pistachio-, milk- or citrus-coloured teapots and mugs.
A selection of baked goods includes items from both Flour and Stone and Two Chaps. Options rotate, but a standout is a slice of Flour and Stone’s gooey flourless chocolate, raspberry and buttermilk cake, served on a perfect eggshell- blue saucer. The result is possibly the best-looking coffee and cake in Sydney.