PURE Boutique Coffee-Bar – Glenelg, SA
Cnr Jetty Road & Durham Street, Glenelg, SA, 5045
This place has the potential to one day be printing money for its owner. It is the ultimate expression of the burgeoning speciality coffee industry in South Australia, located in what is arguably the city’s premiere tourist strip, one street back from Moseley Square and the beach, in partnership with three of the best coffee roasters in the land – yet, on my first visit I was left with a nasty taste in my mouth (literally).
I ventured in on my wife’s birthday (with her blessing) and I said to her , “I would be – no longer than 30 minutes MAX” – and then would catch up with her. I went in, and there was one couple ahead of me waiting for service. We waited (there was four people behind the counter – one of whom was the barista – although it was not 100% clear who that was either) – and looked around at the dark decor, and read all the wonderful coffee ideals on the wall – and we waited – I checked in to Foursquare. Eventually the couple in front of me were served – while a couple who were already seated approached the counter, and embarrassingly asked whether their order had been forgotten…I had a sinking feeling. Finally it was my turn for service and I ordered my standard – a Latte and a Ristretto (always interesting to see what order they come in) – and waited to be asked what beans I would like (assuming that this would happen as they promote their various suppliers on their wall) – but nothing. Hmmmm.
Took a seat – and waited. According to my check in, it was 20 mins until my Ristretto and Latte arrived – together. I proceeded to ask what the beans were and where they from – and I was told they were 5 Senses from Perth. I clarified my question, and was told that he thought they were from Costa Rica. My sinking feeling continued…but now to the review.
Latte Quality – Good – similar to what Bobby encountered in his Cappuccino in that the micro-foam was not so much full of micro bubbles as it was surrounded by macro ones (hard to see in picture – but just around the edge of the glass), but the latte art was appreciated. On first taste it seemed really, really weak, but then it began to exhibit quite nice caramel flavours but was very, very sweet. Hate to think what it would have been like with sugar.
Ristretto Quality - Good - was very short and watery (as opposed to being more like syrup) . Quite sweet with a definite blood orange on the palate with a sour dough after taste.
Cost – $3.50 for a regular size latte. $3.00 for ristretto
Coffee Supplier – 5 Senses – yet they also promote Barossa Coffee Roasters and Veneziano as partners.
Customer Service - - acknowledged my presence and value as a carbon based entity – but not much more; Interaction at point of sale was what you would expect from a franchise establishment – not a boutique coffee bar – when you are serious about coffee you want to take every opportunity for people to explore and experience that ultimate ‘god shot’ – so it would have been nice to have had the three coffee suppliers explained (unusual to have three suppliers) and whether you can choose the beans in your espresso, or whether the beans were attached to an extraction method (i.e. 5 Senses – espresso; Barossa Coffee - pour-over etc). As above, when I finally got my beverages the guy who served them was not really that certain what I was drinking – and he kind of insinuated that I could have asked for a different bean in the Ristretto – but that option was not given. I think if you are going to place yourself into the marketplace like PURE have – then all staff members – from bus boy to barista – need to be able to talk at length – with passion – about the beans and the processes, which will encourage the dedicated fans to do the same…am I expecting too much in Adelaide?
Venue Suitable for:
- Quiet Chat, Deep and Meaningful, and/or Study and Reflection – Perhaps suitable for a chat – but seating was limited, and the music was loud.
Post Script – while this may seem like a completely negative review – it is based only upon one experience, and while not great – it will not deter me from coming back the next time I am in Glenelg. Pure is only new – it is (I think) less that one month old, and so there are bound to be teething problems – however, I think the future is bright for these guys, as the location is perfect – the associations they have made with bean suppliers is spot on – and it is now only a matter of getting the kinks out. It may one day rival The Barun, Red Berry Espresso and Paddy’s Lantern.
Posted on January 7, 2012, in 5 Senses, Barossa Coffee Roasters, Coffee-Bar, Espresso Bar, Glenelg, Veneziano Caffe and tagged Adelaide Seaside, Espresso, Good, Latte Review, Poor Customer Service, Ristretto, Top 5. Bookmark the permalink. 21 Comments.