I’ve only known Nick Stone a few years, so I didn’t know him in high school but I imagine he was one of those guys who was good at absolutely everything, from maths to art, cricket to football, and of course being as tall and ridiculously handsome as he is, I’m sure he didn’t do too badly with the ladies either! With genetics that good, it would have been a pure waste of looks, intelligence and sporting prowess if the guy didn’t go on to do great things, and luckily for coffee loving New Yorkers he hasn’t disappointed.
In the few years I’ve known him, I have watched Nick take an idea and a dream of starting a ‘Melbourne style’ café in his adopted home of Manhattan and turn that dream into three incredible Bluestone Lane cafés – and counting! With the help of his fiancé, the lovely Miss Alexandra Knight and business partner and coffee connoisseur Aaron Cook, these three determined Aussies are taking the New York coffee scene by storm. With cafés now in the Financial District, Midtown, and their latest venture, in the trendy West Village where Nick and Alexandra call home – when they’re not jet setting around the world for their ‘day jobs’, Alex as an international model and Nick in the finance industry for ANZ Bank. To say these two are busy is an understatement! I’m actually not sure when they sleep, if ever.
The aesthetic found within Bluestone Lane Coffee shops has been modeled on what you would traditionally find in inner city Melbourne, infused with classic New York City details. Each store features a frame wall filled with light boxes projecting vintage Australian newspapers, RACV driving maps and famous Melbourne sporting memorabilia. Stars of the 1980s VFL adorn the walls, including Nick’s childhood hero, the late Jim Stynes who is prominently featured. Oh and did I mentioned Nick played AFL himself for Hawthorn and St Kilda? Yep, another life achievement to add to his list.
The latest store, Bluestone Lane Collective Café, located on the corner of Greenwich Ave and Perry Street in the West Village (basically, in my dreams), was created from start to finish by an all-Australian team including the builder, designer, menu consultant, manger, baristas, and staff uniform designer Eileen Chu. The store also features a full Aussie style menu, complete with a Melbourne favourite, smashed avo.
If you’re lucky enough to be getting out of this miserable Australian winter and over to New York any time soon, make sure you add Bluestone Lane to your itinerary! All the cool kids are doing it, even Taylor Swift. True story!