“I’ve had bedroom naked, I’ve had walk-to-the-bathroom naked… I have never had living-room naked.“
– George Costanza, 1997
And, well, until now unless you’ve risked third degree burns to your most sensitive assets, you’ve probably never had awesome-cafe-naked, either.
When the lovely folks at Elevenses moved away from the Moscow end of Melbourne’s CBD it was a sad day at CaffeineCity HQ. I mean, sure I only had to walk to Kinfolk for a decent cup whenever I was around that way but this is Melbourne, damn it, I need – nay – expect to be within earshot and crawling distance of a decent espresso or single origin pour over at all times. So, as disappointing as that departure was, it has been more than made up for by the revealing of their newest and nude-est venture Naked Espresso Bar on Little Bourke St between Elizabeth and Queen (yes, right near BBB).
It’s a teeny-tiny place but there is room to sit. It’s not really a restaurant but their food is top-notch (try the baked eggs or the Rooben Bagel). And, they’re not really naked but there is a certain stripped-back simplicity that works here. Beans courtesy of Toby’s Estate and others on spec are beautifully prepared (all methods available) and served with sparkling water to refresh ye palate.
The proprietors, Tom and Shanny, went out of their way to make customers feel welcome which counts for a lot – especially with the preponderance of seemingly disinterested cafe staff around Melbourne of late. I tend to agree with Diane at Meld Melbourne who said she felt like she was at a mate’s place rather than a cafe. Although, my mates don’t offer me free coffee when I roll up pantsless on a Monday morning.
There have been occasions where I’ve regretted getting Naked, but this ain’t one of ’em.