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LCM unveils new sensory lab (aka Coffee Heaven)

Melbourne Coffee Laboratory

If you’ve been following Langdon Coffee Merchants (LCM) on Instagram, you’ll already have had a sneak peek at our new headquarters in leafy South Melbourne – one of Melbourne’s original gold rush inner suburbs and close to many of the coffee capital’s favourite roasters and cafes.

Even before corona virus mandated workplace flexibility, how we work, when and where, was changing the function of the traditional office – something that was very much part of Langdon’s brief to respected architects Hassell.

“The office isn’t somewhere you have to be these days – it’s somewhere you want to be,” says Langdon family member, Chris.

“We wanted to create a hybrid space over the three levels that would give us room to grow in the future. We’ve deliberately linked the building by a single spacious staircase and created ‘lifestyle’ spaces for chance encounters between the team and customers to spark creativity and improve knowledge sharing.”

Creating coffee geek heaven

Transforming a neglected 1940s factory and warehouse, the Clarendon Street building has been given new life by Hassell, with an industrial design cupping laboratory and sample roasting room. Offices, a food demonstration kitchen for sister company Langdon Ingredients, rooftop BBQ space and sun filled coffee bar, round out the renovation.

From the new lab, Langdon sensory experts can now roast small batch speciality coffees on-site, as well as preparing customer samples.

“We’ll be conducting cupping sessions with clients just as soon as COVID-restrictions allow and we’re equipped to help roasters perfect their roast profiles and blends in the lab,” says Chris.

Sustainable, just like our beans

Like our coffee beans, sustainability was important throughout the build: Rain-water tanks to flush toilets and water plants, solar panelling, hydronic heating panels were installed to increase energy efficiency, and cork and renewable timbers have been used throughout.

LCM’s move to South Melbourne closes the circle on a heritage started 168 years ago by Henry Joseph Langdon. A former merchant captain with the East India Company, Henry migrated to Australia to supply the goldfields with imported goods like tea, gins, soap, shovels and of course, coffee. Arriving in 1852, he unloaded his first shipment of goods in Hobsons Bay, just a kilometre or so from the new headquarters.

You’re invited

We’re eager to welcome you to our new home just as soon as restrictions permit. Please contact us to arrange a cupping or a chat  – our team is eager to put our new equipment through its paces!