With Australia’s insatiable love of coffee, a mobile coffee business is fast becoming a popular and viable business option here in Brisbane. A mobile cafe can not only take care of the morning rush of office goers, but also provide a welcome respite for people during the day. Some mobile coffee vans cater specifically to people looking for a cup of coffee during their break, and do the peak of their business during the lunch hour. Yet others fill the need for a late afternoon or evening café and serve a wide variety of cakes and confectionery along with a good cuppa.
The target demographic largely determines how a coffee van is fit out. Most coffee vans are designed to be operated from outside the vehicle, allowing them to be kept small and mobile. A coffee van will either be powered by a generator or LPG system. Appliances will usually include a commercial one or two group coffee machine, coffee grinder and glass display fridges. Coffee vans will have a complete stainless steel fit out with stainless benches and service area, under bench cup dispensers, stainless sink and tapware and include water and waste water tanks.
A few common examples of the types of coffee vans available are briefly described here.
Compact Mobile Coffee Vans: This fit out works well in a variety of vans such as the VW Caddy and Renault Kangoo and is probably the most commonly seen type of coffee van on the streets. This kind of fit out works best when intending on serving just coffee.
Coffee Utes or Smoko Vans: Designed to make coffee vans out of short wheel-based utility vehicles such as the Toyota Workmate, Mazda BT, Isuzu Dmax, etc. Coffee Utes are often geared up to serve hot pies and sandwiches in business parks and worksites and have more space to allow for appliances such as pie warmers and additional refrigeration to provide for serving such food.
Mobile Coffee Trailers: These trailers work well for those who regularly cater to sporting and other big events. The mobile coffee trailer can be can be towed to an event and an external source of power can also be installed to run it. The tear drop shaped coffee trailer is a popular option as it is compact yet offers something unique visually.
Walk-In Trailers: These are large enough for staff to operate from inside, like most regular food trucks that sell fast food. This option will allow for those wishing to prepare or cook food to be served alongside the coffee that is being served. An external generator is most often used for providing power to run the trailer.