You might miss Inward Goods the first time you drive past. It’s a hole-in-the-wall cafe—just a warehouse space behind a roller door, really. At 6am on weekdays, the roller door creeks open, and out pops an awesome suburban coffee bar.
This place has some serious pedigree. The owners are Melissa & Mike, the guys behind cult Carlton favourite, Vertue Of The Coffee Drink. You can expect the same attention to detail here too. The house roast is a Sabertooth Blend, with a subtle chocolate kick, but the cafe rotates a variety of single origins through the espresso machine and batch brewer. They even sell take-away bean bags if you want to take some home.
The space is super cute, considering the limitations. A tiny industrial bunker. There’s some padded stools up at the espresso bar, plus couches and chairs spilling out onto the street. You’ll spot a lot of cyclists here on weekdays, rolling in for a double espresso and a croissant on their way to work.
Coffee is the focus here, but there is a compact food menu too. Mostly stuff you can grab on the go. Vegan bircher with fruit and coconut yogurt. A bacon and egg wrap with grilled halloumi, spicy salsa and greens (our personal fave). Or maybe a little slow-cooked beef with cheddar and pickles on crusty sourdough. Melissa also stocks a rotating mix of cakes and sweet treats from Cremorne Street Bakers (and yup, there’s gluten-free stuff available).
Inward Goods is riding a new wave of Melbourne cafes. These places aren’t trying to fulfill your wildest caffeinated fantasies. They’re not really interested in gimmicks. It’s more about a simple concept, executed to perfection. In this case, the concept is ‘local takeaway brew bar’.
If Inward Goods is anywhere close to your commute, we defs recommend a pit-stop. Pull up a couch, grab a coffee, and watch the world go by.
Image credit: Annika Kafcaloudis