Blend on Alexander is not what you would expect to find in a country town. The warm tones of wood and exposed brick, the designer blackboards outlining the menu, stainless steel and touches of black give the impression of industrial chic cafes found in Brunswick, Newtown and Brompton - not downtown Port Pirie.
Brady Welch was consulted on the look and feel of the family-run café, he even helped chip away the plaster to expose the brick and give it a more edgy feel. Studying in Adelaide, he regularly heads home to Pirie during the breaks, bringing new ideas with him.
One of the best ideas he has suggested for Blend was cold brewed coffee. Usually found in the coffee capital Melbourne, here in Pirie we can enjoy the best iced coffees in town produced by an intricate contraption that filters cold water through ground coffee one drip at a time.
“Every time I come back I see Port Pirie changing for the better. The people are always great and the local shops do have good stuff,” said Brady.
“It’s never the same, everything is always being updated. It’s constantly growing, or looking for new ways to grow. We’re certainly not static.”
One of the biggest changes Brady has seen is happening right on Blend’s doorstep – the CBD Rejuvenation project. He can’t wait to see the results of this major project by Council.
“The plans look great and it will make the CBD look aesthetically pleasing. It will definitely bring more business to Alexander Street and help local businesses with more foot traffic.”
The future of Blend will hold more fresh ideas, but what about the future of Port Pirie? Brady contemplates this for awhile.
“Well, maybe if Port Pirie was a more self-sustaining city and used recycled materials somehow. That would be cool,” he muses.
How would Brady convince people to come to Port Pirie?
“That’s easy! We have great coffee!” he grins. “There’s always something new!”