At lunchtime on its first day of operation, the new café by the owners of South Melbourne’s Dead Man Espresso was bubbling with customer enthusiasm and staff efficiency.
Co-owner Luke Mutton, with wife Kylie Mackinlay, had been teasing Seddon locals and coffee aficionados about the café’s opening on Twitter for months.
Common Galaxia is named after a fish – a tenacious whitebait native to the Maribyrnong River.
Mutton is thorough when it comes to researching history and naming his cafés. It’s a play on the words too – there’s a connection to time, galaxy and the fish’s survival despite industrialisation and to the things café patrons have in common, such as love of good coffee, good food and good company.
Just as painstaking was Mutton’s café fit-out, achieved through the couple’s design and concept business, Sunkland. Locally sourced materials and craftspeople, such as the team at LifeSpaceJourney who created the custom furnishings to Mutton’s requirements, were paramount.
Chef Bec Kaye’s menu includes all-day breakfast choices such as fig-stuffed baked apples and zucchini fritters with house-cured salmon.
There are intriguing egg offerings and half-a-dozen smørrebrød (open sandwich) choices, one with a topping of crispy common galaxias.
And the coffee? There’s the Seven Seeds blend, a daily single-origin from Market Lane and a pour-over from Proud Mary.
Jackson Duxbury says the most rewarding part of the first week at Common Galaxia has been the flood of tentative locals. Perhaps they don’t quite believe their caffeine-related luck.
Duxbury grew up in Perth and “fell into” making coffee out of school.
He spent 2½ years running the Perth specialty coffee café Zekka with friends and business partners, moving across to Melbourne 18 months ago.
Duxbury spent the past six months at Dead Man and takes on the head barista role at the new café.
“Melbourne is a good place to be right now,” he says.
“There are so many great coffee people who are really pushing the envelope. It’s nice to be able to be a part of it.”
Highlights of his new position are the custom-built pour-over station and the slick Synesso Hydra espresso machine he will use daily – plus the chance to work with some of Melbourne’s top coffee suppliers.
Shop 3, 130 Victoria Street, Seddon
Phone \ 9689 0309
Barista \ Jackson Duxbury
Coffee \ Seven Seeds, Market Lane, Proud Mary
Barista’s choice \ Pour-over
Open \ Tuesday to Friday 7am-4pm; Weekends 8am-4pm
Native blooms sit in amber glass beakers on the timber window bench facing Seddon’s main street. The thoughtfully designed space sits at the base of a new apartment complex and features smoothly polished concrete floors and a warm, slatted timber ceiling. Crisp walls make way for the pale-ash timber and black metal trim that dominate the design. Natural apricot-toned leather across chair frames and the glow of copper tins on shelves behind the counter add warmth and character. Custom-designed light fittings, tables with side cutlery caddies and a bespoke brass, glass and timber pour-over station illustrate the extraordinary attention to detail.