If you’ve noticed a few new faces inside Henri Marc recently, you wouldn’t be mistaken. The business has recently come into the hands of new owner Brandon King, who’s set to take the iconic venue to a new level.
Formerly in a coffee coaching role for a national franchise, which saw him travel interstate offering teaching to those just starting a new store, King quickly developed a sense that he could run a café himself, using his own teachings, and running things in the way he wanted.
“My goal has always been to own a café, and the opportunity arose at the perfect time where I felt like I was ready to move on,” he said.
“I’ve been in the industry for a very long time, for the best part of 10 years, and as time’s gone past, I’ve just developed the urge to want to do it myself.”
Given that Henri Marc has remained one of Penrith’s most iconic cafes for over a decade, King said much of the hard work was done for him. Rather, his goal is to uphold the standards and expectations set by previous owners, whilst pushing the boundaries and cementing its position as one of the area’s best.
“The place when I took it over was already at a very good starting point,” he said.
“A lot of the groundwork that’s normally involved with taking over a café had already been done, because this place has been open for 11 years now. There’s not a lot of work to be done, but I just really want to see if I can take it into a newer direction following the up-and-coming standards of coffee, seeing how far we can take the food, and delivering the best that we can to our customers as well.”
What he thinks will set his ownership apart is his love of coffee, planning to educate both his staff and customers about the variety on offer.
“As a barista, you always want to expand your own knowledge behind coffee, but I also want to give that opportunity to everybody else to join in on that journey as well,” he said.
“There’s no good in me just knowing the differences between different coffees like filtered coffee or a milk coffee, but I want to give other people the opportunity to understand the differences between that themselves, and also how different coffees from different locations can taste as well.”
According to King, the best way to do this is to give it a try, with a very unique experience for coffee lovers on offer at Henri Marc.
“We do a Barista’s Breakfast,” he said.
“It’s three coffees, each of a different way that we make them. You’ve got your milk coffee, which most people will likely drink, and it’s a basic flat white. Then, you’ve got our espresso, so they can taste different beans from different regions. Similarly, we’ve got our filter, which is also tasting different beans from a different region, but it’s brewed in a different way, so different flavours will come out through that.”
Cassidy Pearce is a news and entertainment journalist with The Western Weekender. A graduate of the University of Technology Sydney, she has previously worked with Good Morning Macarthur and joined the Weekender in 2022.