Newcomers raise the bar on Adelaide’s coffee culture with heavenly pastries, boutique-level coffee and an eye for design. Abbots and Kinney is all about the craft.
The name Abbots and Kinney is derived from 19th century American developer and conservationist Abbot Kinney. Taking inspiration from Florence and Paris, Kinney built a tourist destination in swamp and marshland California. That place is Venice Beach. He was someone who respected traditional values but also had a playful side and that’s how owner (Jonny Pisanelli) explains his views on his own trade: it’s important to respect tradition but not be restricted by it. The main focus with Abbots and Kinney is to offer unique quality pastries alongside a boutique-level of coffee but, after talking to Pisanelli, I find there’s a lot more to it. He tells me that it’s a place for everyone and for no one. A pastry chef can come to appreciate the pastry, a barista for the coffee, a builder or tradie may walk in to admire the Tasmanian oak that’s interweaved into the design, which an interior designer will also appreciate. He wants Abbots and Kinney to appeal to all craftspeople. The simple décor is modern and complemented with a unique three-step bench, down the middle, for seating. Graphic designer, Dave Lawson from Crafty, created a big palm tree made from white tape on the feature wall. Pisanelli travelled to Italy after completing patisserie at TAFE SA and worked in the province of Benevento with the sole purpose of learning sfogliatelle. He also travelled to France to learn more about brioche, macarons and croissants. He then had the foundations to build upon and explore before perfecting what he has on offer today. The pastries are amazing and range from sweet to savoury. Each one has exotic combinations of ingredients that are intriguing and make you salivate at the thought. Everything is made and baked fresh onsite daily. Pisanelli has been competing in multiple coffee competitions around Australia since 2010. His success at national competitions led to even more overseas travelling. He is currently the 2015 South Australian Barista Champion and so when he offers me a coffee, I try to stay calm and contain my excitement as I reply, “Yeah, why not”. He goes behind the black powder-coated Nuova Simonelli espresso machine and suggests I try the Guatemala Red Bourbon for my latte. They use D’angelo Coffee Roasters and change beans each week to keep it exciting. The milk (unhomogenised from Fleurieu) is silky smooth and dense with a perfect rosetta as the latte art. It has a floral fragrance that comes through the first sip but it is the hints of spices, such as cardamom and cinnamon, which stand out. Hints of butterscotch also come through, leaving my palate with a clean and sweet finish. Abbots and Kinney is based at a central location that’s easy to get to on foot from the city centre. If you are already a regular then you know that you have to be there early to experience the popular pastries, as they sell out. If it’s your first time, one thing I can guarantee is that the experience and passion shines through with all aspects of this place. Deciding which pastry to try first will not be easy. Abbots and Kinney 78 Pirie Street facebook.com/AbbotsandKinneyMetro