Victoria Harbour has had a new café join the neighbourhood at 838 Collins Street, right next to the Docklands Community Garden. With neon lights, plenty of foliage and inspiring quotes painted on the walls, Charlie Bit Me is a great place to enjoy your morning coffee.
We caught up with Managing Director Diego Ayala, to find out more about the vibrant new eatery. Here is what he had to say…
Tell me about what inspired you to open a café in Victoria Harbour?
My girlfriend Amanda and I have been talking about opening our own café for a long time. She began her career in real estate, but I have been working in hospitality for over a decade. It has been such an amazing journey to see this business come to life, exactly how we imagined it when we first started dating.
Why did you decide to name the café ‘Charlie Bit Me’?
We get asked this question almost every day and it’s a great conversation starter with our customers. The cafe is not named after the video that went viral in 2007, it’s named after our dog Charlie, who sadly passed away a couple of years ago. He was a small black and white Jack Russel, just like the dog in our logo and has been the inspiration behind a number of decisions in the café, including the distinctive black and white interiors.
We were catching up with friends one night, just before the café opened. And we were joking about the time Charlie bit one of my friend’s ex-girlfriends. We couldn’t stop laughing and thought it would be funny to name the café after that moment, in memory of our cheeky Charlie.
What are the highlights of Charlie Bit Me?
We’ve worked really hard to ensure our customers have a great experience from the moment they walk through the door. You will notice a fusion of Mexican and Australian culture, as I have brought some of my heritage to the table. Our head chef is also Columbian, so there are subtle Mexican flavours weaved into the menu, including our Mexican benny, featuring chipotle mayo and pork sliders with a side of corn chips.
We’ve also included our own takes on a number of Melbourne café favourites including our popular acai bowl and avocado on toast. We’ve also got a fridge full of take-away items including wraps, pitas and granola for when you need to take your lunch back to your desk.
Tell us about the coffee…
We use award-winning Melba coffee beans in the café. The organic beans are sourced from speciality producers from across the globe which really makes a difference to the way they taste. I have experience as a coffee roaster and barista myself, so I ensure we only use the highest quality produce. Afterall, a good coffee, can set you up for a great day.
Is there outdoor seating?
Of course. We know that people enjoy sitting in the sunshine, especially after being in an office all day. So, we’ve got outdoor tables and chairs that have a beautiful view of Victoria Harbour’s parks, gardens and green spaces.
When are you open?
Charlie Bit Me is open from 7am – 4:30pm from Monday to Friday. It also has a catering menu with a range of house-made finger food, chia puddings, sandwiches and croissants. These have already been popular among the locals and only require 24 hours notice to produce.
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