Melbourne in Lichfield, Bolt Court

My espresso from Melbourne in Lichfield, Bolt Court: Genesis, a single-origin Costa Rican, roasted by Union.I’ve already written about my ignorance regarding Lichfield when I visited the Melbourne in Lichfield coffee shop on Bird Street. However, this is where it all began in April last year, when the original Melbourne in Lichfield opened, a small kiosk on a narrow alley called Bolt Court in the heart of the city. There’s not much to Melbourne in Lichfield, but the output’s impressive, reminding me in ambition of Reading’s Tamp Culture, albeit with slightly more shelter.

It consists of a kiosk with a small, covered seating area to the left and with three bar stools at the counter, semi-exposed to the elements. The coffee is from Union Hand-roasted with a house espresso, Maraba, a single-origin from Rwandan, plus a guest espresso from either Union or a guest-roaster as well as decaf (Union again). There are retail bags from Union and various guests, plus a decent selection of cake.

You can read more of my thoughts after the gallery.

  • On Market Street, in the heart of Lichfield, an interesting A-board catches the eye...
  • ... and directs us to this narrow passageway, which leads off to the north.
  • It's not very promising, but have faith and you will be rewarded.
  • However, there's another way in. At the far (northern) end of the alley is this car park...
  • ... and tucked away in the far corner is another A-board.
  • Melbourne in Lichfield: Caffeine Dealers and Milk Pushers. That sums it up nicely.
  • This directs us to a long, narrow alley, which is, in fact, the other end of the first alley.
  • Keep going down the alley, and, if you get to this point, you've come too far.
  • Turn around and there it is! The original Melbourne in Lichfield kiosk in Bolt Court.
  • If you don't fancy perching on a bar stool, there's a cute, covered seating area to the left.
  • The door on the side is where the barista escapes at the end of the day.
  • The Melbourne in Lichfield kiosk in all its glory.
  • The espresso machine is off to the right, while the till is in the centre...
  • ... and, off to the left, is a neat tower of cakes.
  • It's a quite impressive selection. I'm also liking the encouraging messages!
  • For a 'simple' kiosk, the decor is impressive, starting with this on the back wall.
  • The rest of the walls are adorned with further pictures.
  • Meanwhile, there's a special offer displayed on the table in the seating area...
  • ... which is repeated on the counter. Read the small print though.
  • There are shutters which close up at night. During the day, they are used as menus...
  • ... particularly on the inside, where we have the coffee menu on the left...
  • ... and the other drinks on the right.
  • The coffee choices hang, in the form of bags of coffee, from a line above the counter.
  • The Maraba single-origin from Rwanda, roasted by Union, is the house-espresso...
  • ... although I was recommended the guest, also by Union, the Genesis from Costa Rica.
  • While the kiosk is mostly takeaway, there are proper cups for those who are staying...
  • ... to drink their coffee, which is a nice touch. We'll finish with my espresso's lovely crema.
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Bolt Court is a narrow alley (a less court-like court I can’t imagine) which runs north from Market Street to the large, characterless expanse of the Bird Street car park, Melbourne in Lichfield accessible from either end. From Market Street, there’s an anonymous doorway opposite the Samuel Johnson Birthplace Museum, while from the car park, there’s an equally anonymous opening in the southeast corner. Fortunately, a handy Melbourne in Lichfield A-board points the way at either entrance.

Melbourne in Lichfield is on the left-hand side when heading north, just after the end of the covered section of Bolt Court. There’s a small, covered seating area to the left, with just a pair of chairs and a coffee table, while the kiosk faces onto the alley, three high stools at the counter. And that’s it when it comes to seating.

Unsurprisingly, Melbourne in Lichfield’s primary trade is take-away, but you are welcome to stay and the staff (in my case, the lovely Sophie, who is leaving at the end of the June to begin a Master’s degree in Lund, Sweden) will be delighted to keep you entertained, particularly if you sit at the counter.

I was tempted by the house-espresso, a Rwandan single-origin, Maraba from Union Hand-roasted. However, Sophie recommended that I try the guest, Genesis, another Union offering, this time from Costa Rica (Melbourne in Lichfield only serves single-origins). In a nice touch, this was served in a proper cup, reserved for those guests who are staying around to drink their coffee (although I did have my trusty Kaffeeform cup on hand in my bag).

This turned out to be an inspired choice, which, as Sophie took great pleasure in explaining, was a slightly larger dose (19g as compared to 18g for the house-espresso) and pulled slightly longer (30s as opposed to 28s). Whatever the recipe, the end result was awesome, a well-balanced, naturally sweet espresso. If I hadn’t been about to rush off to Bird Street and drink lots of coffee there, I’d have stayed for longer and tried it in milk as a flat white. Another time, perhaps.

BOLT COURT • 2 MARKET STREET • LICHFIELD • WS13 6LA
www.facebook.com/melbourneinlichfield
Monday 08:00 – 15:30 Roaster Union + Guests (espresso)
Tuesday 08:00 – 15:30 Seating Counter, Chairs
Wednesday 08:00 – 15:30 Food Cake
Thursday 08:00 – 15:30 Service Counter
Friday 08:00 – 15:30 Cards Amex, Mastercard, Visa
Saturday CLOSED Wifi N/A
Sunday CLOSED Power N/A
Chain Local Visits 30th May 2018

You can see what fellow coffee-blogger, Bex of Double Skinny Macchiato, made of Melbourne In Lichfield.


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  1. Pingback: Melbourne in Lichfield, Bird Street | Brian's Coffee Spot

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