Cafe: 1000 £ Bend - Melbourne

A Good Pounding

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Opening Hours:
Monday – Friday 8am – 7pm
Weekends 11am – 7pm
Coffee:
Niccolo
Food:
Breakfast, lunch, dinner

1000 £ Bend was more of a two hour bend in time. I went in, sat down and when I next looked at my watch, the afternoon had disappeared without my noticing. I had been distracted, somewhat hypnotised by the steady stream of all-sorts passing in and out of the warehouse door. If you get your jollies from people watching, like I do (in a completely non-creepy fashion), then sinking into a couch at 1000 £ Bend is like injecting the raw source of human observation straight into your eyeballs. Lots of cool looking weirdos traipse in and out of this place.

So I watched, without the usual anxiety I sometimes feel in other cafes when I can tell they want my table back as soon as I’ve swallowed the last pumpkin seed on my plate. There is no such rush at 1000 £ Bend. The staff won’t give you an iota of grief for still being there an hour after you’ve finished your food (they mightn’t even have noticed you at all), rather hunkering down for the day seems to be encouraged; the girl across from me was looking incredibly hunkered, horizontal on the couch, under a crochet rug that looked like it had been knitted by 1000 £ Bend’s nanna. I presumed she’d had her cockles warmed by the mulled wine and was feeling a bit sleepy, or perhaps she was just tuckered out from wandering around the exhibition in the space that consumes half of 1000 £ Bend (also used for fashion parades, installations and performances).

Yep, there’s an eclectic mix of souls in this garage of mismatched furniture, rugs, fish tanks and indoor plants and patrons have mismatched experiences: some love it, some hate it. If you like having your hand held by a waiter while he talks you through the depth of the choclatey notes in your single origin espresso, then you’ll be saddened by the experience you’re likely to have a 1000 £ – which will be the opposite of that. You’ll order and pay for your coffee at the counter and when it arrives it’ll be surprisingly decent, but the interaction is likely to end there – there will be no casual chit-chat about the weather (unless The Weather is some sort of underground indie poetry art band/tattoo artist).

So basically what I’m trying to say is enjoy 1000 £ Bend for its idiosyncrasies rather than comparing it to the impeccable standards of other cafes. Enjoy the bargain of morning-rush coffee ($2.50) or the heartiness of the lunch time student food and if you’re still on the fence, attend the next Street Wars artist battle and see 1000 £ Bend totally heaving and in its element. Or you could always get your mid-afternoon sleepy on, it seems that’s perfectly normal behaviour here.

Cafe
1000 £ Bend
361 Little Lonsdale St
Melbourne, 3000
T. 03 9247 6606

Photographer
  • Luke Knoester

    I reckon this site should focus on cafes that focus on their coffee, rather than cafes that are also bars. I’m wary of establishments that are both. What serious cafe sells it’s lattes for $2.5?

  • http://twitter.com/espresso_tales Espresso Tales

    ‘cool looking weirdos’ …. I like it a lot.
    LOVE the photos….

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