What started as a home-based wholesale cake business and accompanying blog, has grown into Uprising, a thriving warehouse bakery and kitchen, tucked away in the back streets of sleepy Maryville in Newcastle’s northern suburbs.
Owner, Alice Lees, first got a taste of the hospitality world in Canberra at Tosolini’s Manuka while studying silversmithing. She then moved back to Newcastle where she waitressed at Three Bean while working part time as a teacher and commuting to Sydney. Alice started selling cakes back to Three Bean in 2010, documenting her progress online. Other local cafes soon jumped on the bandwagon, triggering Alice to hold a weekly stall at the Newcastle Farmers Market. In December 2013 she went all in and created a permanent shop front in a light-filled warehouse that wouldn’t look out of place in the back streets of Surry Hills.
Combining her design history and expertise in baked goods; Alice created a white-walled, concrete-floor space with an open-plan kitchen giving the public full access to the baking process. The simply designed space means the daily products and weekly floral arrangements take centre stage while also keeping the industrial heritage of the warehouse in tact.
Luke Marshall is the man in charge of keeping coffee front and centre in the Uprising experience. He said, “Coffee is a lifestyle, it occupies a big part of mine and everyone’s day. It’s a really big responsibility knowing you can make or break someone’s day when you hand them their coffee in the morning and we take our role within the bakery extremely seriously.”
Beans are sourced from Melbourne roasters Seven Seeds and Proud Mary’s, as well as Sydney-based Pablo & Rusty’s. Luke and his team love the Melbourne-style lighter roasts for their unbeatable flavour and balance. Currently in the grinders is a Seven Seeds blend, Golden Gate. Made up of fully washed Ethiopian and Colombian beans, it makes for a super rich and sweet coffee, perfect black or with milk. A unique blend from Pablo & Rusty’s is also on offer, featuring three El Salvadorian beans naturally processed and blended together. The complexity of the blend means rich fruit notes shine through, even when served with milk.
If a freshly baked berry brioche or sourdough doesn’t tickle your fancy, try a coffee-inspired treat. Uprising has been experimenting with bringing coffee into the kitchen, incorporating it into cakes, syrups and soaked sponges to make its popular coffee lamington. They have recently been experimenting with coffee nougat and a cracked coffee-topped caramel, so keep your eye out for these delicious confectionery.