Addicted to beers and books? You must meet Canberra’s new book cafe
A roaring fireplace, a cup of coffee and a good book: Pulp BookCafé is a new way to spend a day.
The ultimate refuge for book lovers, Pulp BookCafé opened in May to make Gold Creek a community center and cafe with a literary twist.
Owned by Rebecca and Glen Larsen, Pulp (named after the pulp fiction genre, the material from which books and orange juice pulp are made—yes really) was born from Rebecca’s love of writing.
With eclectic and cozy interiors that include a wall of bookcases, a big leather sofa (perfect for snuggling up on a winter’s day in Canberra) and an alfresco space when it gets a little warmer (remember those goodies old days?), Rebecca describes the atmosphere as “the feeling of being in your mother’s living room”.
“We kind of always wanted to open something that wasn’t a pub or a cafe, but something that felt like a community hub,” she explains.
“We just felt like there was nothing like it in the North. It started out as my little dream of quitting teaching and having a little bookstore, and then it kind of took on a life of its own.
But unlike Mom’s Salon, Pulp doesn’t just offer a drool-worthy collection of books.— Rebecca and Glen have planned an all-day breakfast menu and a delicious lunch menu to accompany your new romance.
Bacon and spring rolls, bircher muesli topped with a pear poached in saffron and French toast with ricotta mousse and fresh berries are just a few of the breakfast offerings, while burgers, fish and chips, grilled halloumi salad and a decadent Reuben sandwiches are available for lunch.
But the real highlight is the Pulp ploughman’s lunch: a large harvest platter with prosciutto, salami, focaccia, olives and feta. Designed to be shared, it is perfect for a long literary catch-up with friends.
Maintaining a relaxed and fun vibe (which sometimes includes spontaneous “daggy” dances in the middle of the cafe), the five members of the Larsen family work on the floor at some point in the week. But it’s Rebecca who carefully curates each book, making her the perfect person to suggest what you should add to your TBR pile next.
“I do a lot of research and I read a lot of books—I try to read about 150 books a year! she says.
“Even though these are books that I love or have read or want to read, it’s still a very eclectic mix, but I’m not going to get all the bestsellers…I’m learning to knowing the people who come in and buy the books and what kind of books they like, it adds a personal touch,”
Firmly believe that “all stories are love stories”—which, by the way, is Pulp’s motto—the Larsen try to infuse that personal touch into everything they do, make love the essence of coffee.
“We really want to form a sort of hub where we know people and people know us and everything stems from love,” says Rebecca.
“I think every story is really a love story, even if it’s a tragedy and love is the essence of everything. And that’s kind of what we wanted to have at the heart of the cafe.
Available for after-hours bookings for book clubs and functions and with a liquor license in the works, keep an eye on Pulp’s social media pages: your next literary adventure might come with a warm dinner, live music and a glass of wine.
Personally, we hope Tequila Mockingbird…get it?
What: Pulp BookCafé
When: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday to Sunday
Where: 6/18 O’Hanlon Pl, Nicholls
The Web: facebook.com/pulpbookcafe