Two Spoons Coffee Date With Kate

By Ethically Kate

It’s about time I confessed.

I used to think cafe culture was stupid. It’s a waste of money. It’s only for the rich. I’d rather not. It’s too loud. I don’t want to go out.

- Just a few sentences that used to utter my lips.

Perhaps due to the fact I’m coeliac so I secretly don’t trust cafes not to ‘poison’ me with gluten and cause me to end up on the loo for the rest of the day, or because my parents raised us on tap water and split a teabag between two (not because we couldn’t afford it, but because our money was spent on experiences or helping others). Regardless, I’m here to get my confession off my chest, and explain why I no longer think this way.

When I say ‘here’, I mean I’m sitting in Two Spoons Cafe on the Hibiscus Coast, north of Auckland. It’s just me - and you, lovely reader. Two empty plates that once held a sandwich and a salted caramel brownie take up most of my table. Yum. A messy notebook and stubby pencil take up the rest. While I write this I’ve taken several moments to stop and salute the familiar faces that waltz through the door. Some have even perched on the stool opposite me and chatted about their day, until they’ve realised their lunch break is well and truly over, and clicked that I’m actually ‘at work’ too.

Colourful bunting is swaying in the breeze outside. The sun is streaming in, mid rain shower. Each table is full. Some are old. Some are young. Some are happy, and others have frowns and brow lines that make my brow crinkle too. The taste of brownie on my lips is comforting, and I saw an outfit breeze in and out of the cafe that made me look twice; it was so well put together.

I’ve witnessed groups meet, couples laugh, families reconnect, and old school friends catch up. I moved myself out of a mental funk. My taste buds are thankful for the new flavours that they don’t witness at home, and I feel like I have regained touch with my community in the short hour I’ve been here.

This is cafe culture, in all of its glory!

Cafe culture = community.

Cafe culture = energy.

Cafe culture = people.

Cafe culture = kindness.

Cafe culture = observing fashion, appreciating people, fueling bodies, and gathering in community.

To put the cherry on the cake, Two Spoons truly have the ultimate cafe culture. They make real food, from scratch. Gluten free food, vegan and vegetarian food; the works. Their food waste gets taken away every week, to nourish a local banana plantation. Today I found out they’ve directed 2.6 tonnes of food waste to the plantation since February 2019. They hero organic, their food is the best on the Hibiscus Coast (in my humble opinion, though definitely swayed because I’m coeliac and I know just how careful they are with their food prep), and the locals keep on coming back. Why? Two Spoons have grown their community in a way that screams health in all senses of the word. Emotionally, mentally, physically.

Previously, I would have denied that a cafe could really make a difference to any of this, but through years of observation and experience, at cafes all over the world, I’m taking back everything I said!

Cafe culture is not stupid. It’s a crucial part of society, and it’s an absolute privilege to experience it.