Ahoy there me hearties! That’s what I thought of when I first visited Dapper Coffee. It was over a year and a half ago and perhaps it was all the wood panelling and old lanterns but I’m pretty sure that crusty old sailors never got coffee this good! One could turn their nose up at the hodge podge of bits and pieces. I have to say that I felt a bit like that on first impression. In a country where so many cafés are slick and urban with concrete flooring and lots of glass (don’t get me wrong, I love those cafés too!), Dapper Coffee on Amoy Street does not fit that mould. When I visit, I feel a bit like a treasure hunter who has wandered into an old tavern full of wonders and I love it.
It is only by a couple of signs on the street that signify where to go and bumbling up the long flight of stairs is how you access Dapper. Thank goodness for me, it is only halfway up the stairs and then a right turn through a door that could possibly have been found at an indian restaurant. This adds to the mystique of entering Dapper Coffee (also known as the Spiffy Dapper – the bar that it turns into at night).
On my second visit, I popped my head in and yelled out “hello” only to find co-owner, Christine at the back putting together a strawberry tart. I wasn’t in a huge hurry so I watched for a bit then wandered out to the front where she made me a great latte, served in a vintage cup that she had found at an antique store. She’s a collector of sorts with different little vessels to be used for espressos, milk, you name the liquid. On top of their coffee machine is this mix of eclectic glasses, cups and mugs. My favourite are the vintage glasses by Pepsi and other sodas.
Instagram @dappercoffee will keep you updated on what their food options are. From great breakfasts and Japanese inspired lunches to their experimentations with coffee such as their unicorn tears and gold pressed coffee. Their cake selection is a riot of colours and flavours, completely different to your ordinary cake shop. And as if they weren’t doing enough cool things, their new range of cold, bottled coffee looks cool (and I’m such a sucker for nice packaging).
At night the “ship” turns into a cocktail bar and I have visions of an old sailor with a peg leg and perhaps someone with an eye patch to be sitting on a barstool along their copper benchtop. (Though I’m pretty sure the crowd would be more sophosticated than that!)
Recently, on their Facebook, Dapper Coffee announced that they were looking for investors to help their employees fulfil their dreams. Their post reads:
“… This spirit of exploration has bought together a bunch of awesome people who want to pursue their dreams. People like Liz who started as a barista and now makes all the awesome cakes at Dapper Coffee; and Jez, who is getting ready to open a Coconut Milk Shake kiosk.
So now it is time for us to support their dreams and start some new adventures with our team. We wanna help the folks who have been working with us achieve their dreams and start stuff on their own.”
You’ve really got to admire a company, be it big or small, that truly supports the people who work there. All the best, Dapper Coffee! And see you real soon.