Good Lo­cal

A sweet ad­di­tion to Auck­land’s Pon­sonby, NOK café of­fers ve­gan, dairy-free and gluten-free baked treats as well as great cof­fee and vibes.

Good - - CONTENTS - Words and pho­tog­ra­phy Carolyn Ent­ing

Pon­sonby’s new sweet ad­di­tion NOK café

The sense of com­mu­nity is un­mis­tak­able upon en­ter­ing NOK café, whether it’s through the wel­com­ing street en­trance or back door. Phys­i­cally con­nected to its mother brand, sus­tain­able sa­lon Kin­dred Hu­man + Earth, NOK stands for ‘next of kin’, clev­erly named by Cat Frost, owner of both.

The Dou­glas Street space was pre­vi­ously oc­cu­pied by eatery Lit­tle & Fri­day, whose de­par­ture left a neigh­bour­hood cry­ing into its empty Keep­Cups. So when Frost took over the lease, she planned to reestab­lish a great cof­fee ser­vice for lo­cals.

With Kin­dred she has suc­ceeded in cre­at­ing a tran­quil haven for hair styling and treat­ments that are gen­tle on clients as well as the earth. NOK is an ex­ten­sion of those val­ues “to make your day a lit­tle yum­mier and up­lift­ing”.

Frost de­scribes the in­te­rior as “not too loud, but cheeky and full of life”. The lush trop­i­cal wall screens were de­signed by Frost and printed onto ad­he­sive film.

NOK serves All­press or­ganic cof­fee with a va­ri­ety of plant­based al­ter­na­tive milks. The café’s charis­matic head barista Robin Wachs­berger is a re­cent trans­plant from New York City, who left the world of pod­cast­ing and ra­dio to move onto a house­boat in the City of Sails.

The menu is ve­gan and pur­posely filled with items that non-ve­gan cus­tomers can iden­tify with. Hero items in­clude a co­conut cream retro dough­nut from award­win­ning bak­ery Tart (just a few streets away) as well as savoury and sweet pas­tries.

NOK col­lects its baked goods fresh from lo­cal bak­ers each day, which Frost sees as em­brac­ing the spirit of “con­tribut­ing and con­nect­ing”, where bak­ers and con­trib­u­tors are con­sid­ered part of the fam­ily. Liz Kwan of Muy Yum Treats drops in a se­lec­tion of gluten-free, ve­gan and re­fined su­gar-free de­lights daily that in­clude a silky zuc­chini choco­late brownie and a meringue cookie.

NOK also of­fers Two Is­lands Co. col­la­gen shots in your morn­ing cof­fee for an added boost for skin and hair health, as well as her­bal teas, spicy chai and matcha lat­tes, Karma Cola and kom­bucha.

Homely and re­laxed, the space is there to make your own. There are knee rugs and dog­gie treats (an­i­mals and kids are en­cour­aged) and you might even en­counter a barista in an an­i­mal one­sie. Fu­ture plans in­clude ukulele ses­sions, a stitch and bitch, and artis­tic col­lab­o­ra­tions with All­press gallery.

Read more about Kin­dred on page 14 and

NOK 42 Dou­glas Street Pon­sonby, Auck­land. 7.30am–3.30 pm Tues­day–Satur­day. On Sun­days will be op­er­at­ing very soon.

NOK’s in­te­rior is re­laxed with a trop­i­cal vibe. Left: Head barista Robin Wachs­berger (left) and Cat Frost, owner of NOK.

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