On 30 August 2014, we officially opened Sprolo’s doors to the public. Sprolo, a mash up of the words “Spro” (short for espresso) and “YOLO” (You Only Live Once), is located at 138 Canning Highway in South Perth and was birthed with the concept of bringing together great coffee and minimalistic Asian-inspired food.

Today, we are 1 day away from our 1st Birthday.

This is the story so far.

We found the vacant building on Canning Highway and thought it would be an interesting location for a cafe. It was previously used as a car parts shop and we loved the worn jarrah floors and the open layout. After calling up a few tradies and gathering our closest friends together, we set off to turn it into a cafe.





Once the dust settled, we had a 1.5 tonne concrete bench holding up a custom painted 3 Group La Marzocco Linea PB, a duo of Mahlknonig K30’s and an EK43. The Linea PB was painted in Starfire Pearl and was given “Sprolo Blue” racing stripes as a tribute to the heritage of the building.


Photo Credit: Ilkka K

We custom built a 5m long communal table that had to be welded on site due to its size. And in the back corner, in a tiny space, we rolled in a 10kg Has Garanti coffee roaster. It was soon to be commissioned under the name of Blacklist Coffee Roasters, a new coffee brand.


Sprolo opened with a bang and we got busy a lot quicker than we expected. People seemed to be coming from everywhere! We roasted coffee before opening hours, worked the floor during the day and sorted out all the paperwork at night. It was ridiculous. But we loved it. We gave it our best and before long, we had some media attention to show for it:

– Australian Gourmet Traveller, Hot Plates September 2014
– Sunday Times, 14 September 2014
– Cafe Culture Magazine, Issue 38
– Scoop Magazine, Issue 70
– Scoop Magazine, Issue 71
– Sunday Times Magazine Top 100
– Bean Scene Magazine, December 2014
– Urbanspoon, #2 Talk of Town
– The Urban List, Where To Find Perth’s Best Coffee
– The Urban List, 15 Perth Breakfasts to Try in 2015
– Gourmet Traveller 2016 Australian Restaurant Guide, Top Cafes


Sprolo Launch Day


Blacklist Coffee Roasters also got some attention. We focused on supplying the best coffee beans we could offer along with the provision of personalised support to our wholesale customers. Within the first year of operation, we established a coffee supply relationship with 10 cafes in Perth and distributors in 2 other countries. We won 2nd place in the 2015 WA Barista Competition, 1st place in the Latte Art category and represented WA at the National Championships in Melbourne. We outgrew the small corner of Sprolo and moved into the warehouse at the back in March 2015. Shortly after, we launched our Barista Training School headed by Rie Moustakas.

LaunchHMA_7842Photo Credit: HMA Photos


We’re looking back on the last 12 months and we find it hard to believe that so much has happened in that relatively short period of time. We’ve had some big wins. We’ve made it through some rough times. We’ve shared lots of laughter but also the sweat and tears. We’ve seen our friends, family and even customers support us beyond our expectations. We’ve celebrated together and forged new relationships and really… we’d do it all over again.

We want to thank everyone who has stood by us to make all this possible. Our family, our friends, our staff, our suppliers and our customers. Without each and every one of you, the story would not be the same. We’re humbled by your support. Above all, we thank God for doing what He does and for making our dreams a reality.

Tomorrow, Sprolo and Blacklist Coffee Roasters turn 1 year old. We are going to have a party and we would love it if you could join us!


Details of the event can be found by clicking here. We hope to see you here!

Thank you!

Darren and Gabriel

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