Jason Scheltus is supercharging market going caffeine lovers with expertly crafted blends, and more information than you can throw a cup at
“There’s a list as long as your arm of things we don’t do” says Jason Scheltus about Market Lane. It doesn’t sound like the world's most winning mission statement, but for a city teetering on the verge of actually exploding from its excitement over coffee, it is. “It’s not that we think we wouldn’t do a good job of making tea for $4, we just wanted to keep our focus on the coffee, and the coffee alone.” And whilst it might seem limiting, or like snobbery to eschew all that is not bean related, the specialist coffee market is one that is rapidly growing, and the Market Lane duo can proudly claim to be one of those who led the way.
We tend to think that Melbourne has always had the dynamic coffee scene that it does today, but just a few years ago, before Scheltus paired up with Fleur Studd, specialist green bean importer and owner of Melbourne Coffee Merchants, there were only three companies who sourced and imported raw product for roasting. “Fleur started the Coffee Merchants with the desire to see more provenance, traceability and quality in the Australian green bean market”. It’s clearly something Melbourne wanted too, because the duo gained an instant following when they began small batch roasting that product for serving and selling at the Prahran Markets. Three years on, the pair have done such a bang up job of creating dynamic blends like their famed La Fany (don’t), they’ve had to open a new venue at the Victoria Markets to serve their fans from the North.
Again amongst the leaders of the pack, Scheltus is now experimenting with more labour intensive brewing techniques to really showcase the characteristics of certain beans which espresso extraction just doesn’t reveal. “We’ve pretty much perfected espresso – we can make a good business out of just selling espresso coffee, but like a lot of places we’re trying to find a way we can serve filters, and still make it approachable, affordable and fast enough for the customer.”
With both stores bustling, Scheltus is a man in the enviable position of knowing that for him "this is it”. “Hopefully I’ll just keep getting better at serving customers, sourcing product and making delicious coffee. That’s my end game.” We'll drink to that.
|Venue name:||Market Lane Coffee: Therry Street|
109-111 Therry St
|Opening hours:||Tue-Sat 7am-3pm; Sun 9am-3pm|
|Transport:||Nearby stations: Spencer Street|
|Price:||Up to $50|