Locomotive takes the espresso route to Mayfield

SPECIALIST coffee house The Locomotive is adding momentum to Mayfield’s journey towards becoming ‘‘Newcastle’s new Camperdown’’ – the inner-western Sydney suburb once dominated by warehouses and factories that is now a highly desirable residential address.

No longer rough, but more of a rough diamond, Mayfield is increasingly attracting specialist food businesses, with The Locomotive (160 Maitland Road) joining a block that also includes not-so-hidden gem and cheese and smallgoods mecca Pork Ewe Deli (144 Maitland Road, facebook.com/pork.ewe).

Just doors away is Spanish tapas joint Barrio 2304 (45 Maitland Road), which attracts crowds for its delicious morsels and magnetic atmosphere, while coffee lovers can also head to side pocket espresso (9/286-292 Maitland Road) for a fix and a changing, but always tasty, food offering. A little further along Maitland Road, Peppertown Cafe (on the corner of Maitland Road and Selwyn Street, Mayfield East) serves coffee, breakfast and more, as well as pizza and pasta from their Pizza Hub.

Also in Mayfield, the new-look The Stag & Hunter Hotel is making waves of its own with a menu including pub favourites, steaks and more – with wine matches recommended for each dish.

The Locomotive has been open for a little over a fortnight, with former One Tree Coffee Co, One Penny Black and Fortunate Son barista Hamish Brown at the helm, and partner Alex Marzol completing the team. The clean, light and bright space with simply stylish white, black and wood accents looking onto bustling Maitland Road puts the focus solely on coffee: the La Marzocco coffee machine takes pride of place, with the EK 43 Mahlkonig coffee grinder beside.

Brown and Marzol are passionate about offering customers the best coffee every day, with a focus on quality control so every single cup is spot on, right down to regularly weighing the grind produced by the EK 43 to make sure their coffee is consistently good.

They’ll change the coffee on a regular basis, taking their customers on a tasting and learning experience with each new offering. In just a few weeks since opening they’ve offered three different small batch single origin roasts, with plenty more to come.

‘‘What we are trying to do here is bring specialty coffee to Newcastle in a way that hasn’t been done before and give the coffee scene something different,’’ Brown told Food & Wine.

To find out what they’re brewing on any given day, visit The Locomotive’s Instagram page or head to the coffee house where Brown or Marzol can fill you in as they make your cup. With backgrounds as coffee lovers turned barista (Brown) and working in the wine industry (Marzol), the duo is keen to share their love and knowledge of coffee. They’ll happily talk you through the subtleties of each drop, such as the Costa Rican La Loma single origin with its  characteristics of lemon and tropical fruits, a nice round mouth feel and natural sweetness up front, which is available now at the Mayfield coffee house.

To complement your coffee, The Locomotive is offering sweet treats from Newcastle’s boutique baker, Hello Naomi, the only stockist outside of the main shop and kitchen at 175 King Street, Newcastle. They’ll have a few cookies and a cake on offer from a changing selection and are clearly a good fit for the talented cupcake, cookie and cake maker: ‘‘We are as passionate about our coffee as she is about her cakes,’’ Marzol said.

The Locomotive is at 160 Maitland Road, Mayfield. It is open 7am to 3pm Tuesday to Friday, 8am to 4pm Saturday and Sunday. Visit the_locomotive_ on Instagram.

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