We can’t help feeling a little bit pleased that one of the Starbucks on Lambton Quay has closed, and been replaced by a shiny new Mojo:


This is the new Mojo Origins, out the front of Lambton Square, behind a schist facade that some years ago had been put together for an earlier tenant, Rodd & Gunn.

Predictably enough, when this SBUXectomy was mentioned on Twitter some of the responses were less than complimentary to Mojo. “Replacing one chain with another” seemed to be the refrain; and that might be technically true. However, for many reasons Mojo is no Starbucks, with two of the most relevant being:

  1. Mojo coffee is consistently very good.
  2. Each Mojo is allowed to be different.

Origins’ point of difference is the coffee. Just like Peoples, Coffee Supreme’s Customs, and Memphis Belle before them, Mojo is adding to their usual lineup of espresso based drinks by joining the brewed coffee trend… but unlike their competitors they’re taking it to a flagship shop on Wellington’s busiest shopping street. For what is at present a somewhat hipsterish obsession primarily enjoyed by coffee wonks who don’t seem to mind traipsing to the funkier ends of town for their fix this is reasonably ballsy of Mojo.

Along with the brews they’re also highlighting their single-origin beans. From later this week they’ll be offering (hopefully with a choice of bean) Chemex filtered coffee, and Siphon-brewed coffee. The Siphons in particular are recommended for their theatre; while this Wellingtonista prefers the Chemex for taste.

Mojo’s interiors are also usually worth a bit of inspection. This one seems a little under-designed by their usual standards. But between the map on the back wall, the pallets used as furniture, and the buckets of roasted coffee there is a little bit of an industrial vibe here grafted onto a busy high-street cafĂ©. It’s even a little reminiscent of Mojo “Coffee Central”.


So, there we have it. Another new Mojo, and one worth a stop by to try out the new brews, and the only place in the Lambton “Quarter” offering such coffee-making methods.

Let’s hope it succeeds, and encourages our other local Wellington regional “chains” to invade the high streets and shopping areas, and thereby purge the town of all the Starbucks, Esquires, Gloria Jeans, and Coffee Clubs. The coffee capital we shall truly be!