The Boot Factory - Coburg
I have to start with kudos to the Melbourne suburb of Coburg. What a nugget it has turned out to be, a real coffee culture brewing in the area. In the last few months I have found Wild Timor, Anthropology and now The Boot Factory. The added bonus of The Boot Factory is that it lies within the grounds of the old Pentridge Prison, steeped in history and mystery and the original burial place of my hero Ned Kelly.
What I love as you approach this place is the respect it pays to the old while embracing the new, it is a newish Cafe but located in a building built in the 1850's. The building was once part of the Coburg penitentiary where well behaved prisoners worked making shoes & boots for the prison guards.
The theme continues inside where the building has been renovated keeping the integrity of the original features. It is them dressed with recycled and used furnishings that give it a cosy feel. There seem to be three fairly distinct areas; a standard cafe area, a library style lounge space with communal table, and an upstairs loft are used for function space.
The coffee is all quality, beans from Toby estate providing what I would classify as a Cab Sav style of coffee, strong and bold. As it hit the table you could not help but take in that real strong coffee aroma, it stayed on my hands for hours afterwards, every sip started with a huge waft of coffee smell and ended with a truely chocolatey finish.
I also ordered a cold brew, it was surprising, very complex and strong. Im so used the the cold brew being diluted into a light sweet summer drink. This was not that.
This place just works, dare I say it feels like a pair of the old boots . .... right down to the use of used boxes as shelves and the grandma arm chairs and coffee tables... worth the visit but no longer a secret based on the crowd.