Only the most attentive listeners will hear the fabled Jardines' Noonday Gun firing along the Causeway Bay waterfront. But no one will miss the new corner cafe on the ground floor of a two-storey building along an alleyway off Cannon Street.
Infamous for its heady brew of pet-store smells and the oily whiff of street food, Cannon Street has a welcome new scent: the bracing aroma of locally roasted coffee, courtesy of 18 Grams cafe.
This perky outlet was co-founded by Australian-born Jason Moses and Gloria So, originally from Hong Kong and educated in Australia. The former classmates, who are also married, own Glory Coffee, a Hong Kong-based coffee importer and roaster. The cafe manager and the couple, who are all baristas, say the name 18 Grams embodies the cafe's philosophy: consistency, precision and quality. Also, a single espresso normally contains seven to eight grams of coffee; 18 Grams' espresso has 10, So says.
She explains that to be consistent in serving the best quality espresso, they top the machine's porter filter with up to 20 grams of coffee (ground noisily right after you order) which comes out as double shots. The baristas either drink the extra shot (So slurps down eight shots daily) or discard it - though it hurts their environmental conscience a little. "We call it 18 grams instead of 20 because the number 18 in Cantonese sounds euphemistically as guaranteed fortune," So says.
The tiny cafe has three tables. The menu offers 14 hot and eight iced coffees, chocolate drinks, smoothies, home-made jam toast, all-day breakfast and daily special sets.
Address Unit C, G/F, 15 Cannon Street Reservations 2893 8988 Website www.18grams.com