Tucked down a laneway off Elizabeth Street in Brisbane’s CBD you will find John Mills Himself. The historic building has a fascinating story and well worth reading about. The café bar is also worth a visit because, although in some respects it’s like a step back in time, you also feel like you’re riding the crest of coffee’s third wave. The exposed brickwork connects you with the past and the understated decor immerses you in a relaxed state to enjoy the now. It has a feel very similar to Reverends Fine Coffee.
Sitting at the brew bar, coffee by day, alcohol by night you can watch regulars order coffee and baristas Kate, Matthew, Emma, and Brian know each of them by first name. The service is attentive and accommodating to those alone and looking for someone to talk to. You can tell that they are after the perfect pour every time because they weigh every shot. Three grinders are setup for espresso and a fourth for filtered coffee. The house blend at the moment is Uncle Joe’s Hey Joe. The rotation in the grinders is constant and at anytime can have Uncle Joe’s, Coffee Supreme, Single Guys or Marvell Street Roasters in them. Great to see an ethos of supporting local roasteries.
After watching everyone else get a sample of the Cup Guatemalan Santa Clara, it was my turn. At the moment, Cup have roasted the same bean processed three different ways. I had the washed process but soon you will be able to try it as natural and honey processed as well. What a great initiative from Cup and John Mills Himself. The short black was crisp, really enjoyable.
One cool thing you may want to look out for is the filtered espresso. They grind a filter roasted bean, place a V60 underneath the espresso machine group head and pour! This method filters residual grounds and cleans up your brew.
It was time to try some filtered coffee. I knew this would be good when Kate asked ‘which one do you want to try?’ and four bags of beans were in front of me waiting for my inspection. It’s very rare to refuse Uncle Joe’s, Single Guys and Cup coffee but there was a mysterious fourth bag with 8-bit written on it. 8-bit is the creation of Daniel Rechlen, a quite obsessed and mysterious underground roaster. He sources beans from Ninety Plus the coffee that consistently receives scores of 90 plus on the 100 point scoring system. These were an Ethiopian Yirgacheffe Tchembe. I opened the bag and the aroma immediately made me want to eat the beans, what a hit of tropical fruits. Drinking it was a real treat, such refined high quality coffee roasted to perfection.
We all visited at different times and came to the same conclusion. John Mills Himself in Brisbane’s CBD offers super coffee, innovation and dedication.