Take one serious coffee lover with an idea about how things should be and a growing dissatisfaction at not finding it in his own backyard, and Mooba is what you get.
It’s the latest addition to the growing number of quality cafes in Perth that I think are doing things right, by taking an approach of continual learning and improvement to make sure their coffee is consistently good.
Mooba is situated right in the heart of Wembley, on the corner of Cambridge St and Jersey St, right next to the bank, and down the road from the Wembley Hotel, it’s basically built into the alcove of a small block of shops.
Mark (the owner) of Mooba wanted to bring the concept of the coffee bar to this area by creating a relaxed space where people could sit and chat and drink great coffee. Sadly, planning officials didn’t think too kindly of this idea, because apparently you can’t have something with no walls that needs a roof. So the bar was morphed into what I’d called a coffee kiosk. A little room housing the coffee equipment, fridges, and a display cabinet, but otherwise stripped to the bare essentials.
The first time Sharon and I dropped in to check the place out after getting the low down from the effervescent Ben of the WA Barista Academy, we were surprised to hear a barista in an indepth conversation on coffee roasting with some customers. Sounds like my kind of place I thought, and soon found out that the aforementioned roasters were none other than Matt n Bec, a couple of discerning local coffee geeks and home roasters who know their way around a cup. Happy to be in good company, we sampled a few ourselves.
The Mooba blend is roasted by 5 Senses, it’s got a nice body, and a chocolately aftertaste, not the same kind of acidity or floral highlights as some other blends, but it’s very easy to drink and pleasing in a short black as well as in milk. The bulk of the work being done by a solid PNG base, with some Brazilian and something else I forget filling it out nicely.
On my next visit to Mooba, a week or so later, I was also able to sample it as a double ristretto and as a flat white. Both worked well for me, but I probably should have drunk the flat white before the ristretto, because after that intensity of coffee, a flat white just tastes like milk.
I have to say though, the thing I liked the best about Mooba were the staff. They are all so enthusiastic and eager to please, it’s like the Brady Bunch opened a cafe (no offence guys :) ). That attitude definitely bodes well for the future, with Mark taking a proactive approach to training (all staff have completed advanced level training courses at WABA), and giving the barista a little piece of ownership that they can sink their teeth into. Expect good things to be heard about these guys in the near future.
Oh, and try the Bircher muesli and yoghurt with fresh berries, it’s like a whole meal in a cup. Great for people wanting a healthy start to the day, and those who are frequently so lazy that they need to combine all their meals into one… ala me.
320 Cambridge St, Wembley