Before Starbucks popularized flat white and before everybody was ordering Avocado Toast for brunch, there was Bluestone Lane that brought it all in and made it part of the coffee and food culture in the US. Nick Stone – founder and CEO – did it without catchy announcements and restaurant window displays. Melbourne native, he made Avo Smash and good coffee traditions part of the daily life for everyone in New York City.
– Where does the name Bluestone Lane come from?
The name, ‘Bluestone Lane’ was inspired by the maze of culturally infused cobblestone laneways in Melbourne that are renowned for their dynamism, art, nightlife and great coffee. Our philosophy was to bring a piece of this energy to the United States, selling not only the specialty coffee for which Melbourne is known, but selling the Aussie way of life.
– Manhattan West location was just awarded A Gold Award by Driven x Design in the Interior Design category. How do you think this location is different from the other cafes around NYC and what makes it so special?
This cafe is special for us because the design is so disparate from all other Bluestone Lane locations. Being part of the Hudson Yards development, we wanted to create a space that’s approachable, but also feels sleek and luxurious, creating juxtaposition with the industrial surrounds. The award winning interior design features dark timber stain tones, brass accents, colour pop cushions, handmade pendant lighting, and Aussie moon stamps and artwork. What makes this location so unique is its hybrid nature that offers a respite from busy New York through the day and also into the early evening.
– What should you order to get the ultimate Melbourne food experience?
The ultimate Melbourne food experience starts where we started – with ‘Avocado Smash’ on toast. Our famous #AvoSmash has been on the menu since we first opened doors in 2013. This signature dish of ours launched the avocado on toast phenomenon that now grips NYC! Other favorites are the Brekkie Bowl and Baked Eggs. Our new menu that launched in January also introduced another Aussie brunch staple that is a must try. It’s our ‘BL Big Brekkie’ with smoked bacon, poached eggs, roasted tomato, grilled chorizo, sautéed kale, mushrooms and toast.
– Is it true that you were the pioneers of introducing flat white to New Yorkers?
Absolutely!! However, I think that it was around in various circles already.
– What is your favorite coffee drink?
My favorite coffee drink is one that always triggers queries from locals in our cafes and coffee shops. The ‘Magic’ is a drink we brought across from the land down under – and part of my personal morning ritual. It is made with two short espresso shots in a 4.5oz cup, with steamed milk and velvety microfoam. Definitely worth a try if you’re looking for something with a little less milk than our equally as delicious ‘Flat White.’
– What kind of coffee drink would you recommend getting at Bluestone Lane Manhattan West location?
We are definitely known for our espresso drinks. Our Maverick blend is rich and chocolatey, and our Single Origin blend has notes of vanilla and stone fruit. However, we have a lot of non-coffee drinking locals and for them I would definitely recommend one of the drinks from our ‘Wellness Latte’ range. Our Beet, Golden and Matcha Lattes have great health benefits, are made with steamed almond milk and are widely popular. Have our great baristas at Manhattan West make you one of these!