Multifaceted coffee and art hub Lonely’s Bar opens in West End
Much like how every cup of coffee boasts its own complexity and uniqueness, so too does every cafe. As last year came to a close, a brand-new one-of-one coffee joint sprouted up off Montague Road in West End. Lonely’s Bar is a singular concept that looks to bring together caffeine and creativity under one roof, with a slick industrial interior comprised of skilfully repurposed materials, an ever-changing selection of specialty filter coffee and DJs spinning tunes on Sunday mornings. Curious? You should be. Here’s the lowdown …
Not long after Aaron Ryder relocated to his hometown of Brisbane last year, the pandemic struck. While this no doubt soured aspects of Aaron’s homecoming, it didn’t deter him from executing the plans he had for his next step. Arriving home fresh from a stint working across Melbourne’s hospitality scene, Aaron quickly set his sights on Brisbane’s own coffee landscape – putting plans in motion to create a hub that could bring together his love of coffee, food and various forms of art. Growing up in a family of artists, Aaron has seen the hardships endured by those in the creative space and the benefits provided by community support. With this in mind, Aaron has opened Lonely’s Bar – a multi-purpose locale that doubles as a coffee and pastry spot and an informal gallery space and music venue. Taking over the warehouse studio formerly occupied by Raw Arts, Aaron swiftly undertook a two-month DIY refurbishment that saw 90-percent of the venue’s de-fitted materials recycled and repurposed into Lonely’s furnishings and lighting arrangement. The effort has resulted in a space that meshes the sturdy industrial nature of the warehouse with the eclectic warmth of recycled timber. Lonely’s Bar boats two entrances – one facing Montague Road and a second around the side of the building (off Skinner Street), where a scattering of tables and umbrellas sit outside for sunny sipping. At the heart of the space sits a central service island, which houses a Synesso coffee machine, pastry display and a small food-prep space. At the rear of the space one will find some low-set timber banquettes and tables, accentuated by various pieces of art and pops of greenery.
Aaron is eager to make the most of the space at his disposal and inevitably turn Lonely’s Bar into his dream venue, but for now is opting for a slow-and-steady approach. At this juncture coffee is king, which is the perfect starting point for Aaron, who is an avowed lover of specialty brew. Aaron and his team of coffee slingers are whipping up espresso and filter brews, with an assortment of roasters on deck for those who love a bit of variety. The roasters showcased at Lonely’s are dictated by Aaron’s personal preferences, but coffee aficionados needn’t fear – a glimpse at the selection proves Aaron’s got good taste. Beans from Melbourne’s Proud Mary, Northgate’s Passport Specialty Coffee and Narangba’s Cavalier Coffee Roaster all make an appearance, with more set to rotate through semi-regularly. Guests might spy some coffee roasting apparatus up on the mezzanine level – Aaron will soon look to roast small batches of beans sourced from across Australasia for special in-house brews. Need a snack to accompany your cuppa? Peckish patrons can chomp on a concise selection of freshly baked treats from Mica Brasserie. Eventually Lonely’s will look to expand into the afternoon and evenings, adding tapas and booze to the offering, keeping the focus on simple and fresh bites. Soon the space will play host to live music from local collectives, while DJs will pop in every Sunday morning to spin tunes while guests sip and relax.
Lonely’s Bar is open daily – be sure to check the Stumble Guide for operating hours and other important details!
The Stumble Guide is our comprehensive Brisbane dining guide with more than 2400 places to eat, drink, shop and play.