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With the help of Leo Beer who are helping us discover the islands coolest places, Phanganist goes for Brunch at Bubba's and speaks to owner Robin about his Koh Phangan story, early mornings and good coffee.
What brought you to Koh Phangan?
I first came in 2006 aged fifteen with my family as my mum had a friend here and have come back every year since, once, twice or three times a year.
When I grew older at the age of eighteen I started coming back alone, with friends or still with my family.
I love the sunshine, the freedom and the Thai culture.
Did you know you wanted to open a coffee shop?
I figured that if I wanted to stay then I should do something in hospitality or tourism, that’s why I traveled to Melbourne and started working in the coffee industry. I learnt how to set up a coffee shop and how to run one.
So then I decided to move here and make a coffee shop here as I had learned it out there.
Why the name Bubba’s?
My little sister, when she was younger couldn’t pronounce Robin so she called me ‘Bubba’ and my family kind of took it over. It wasn’t really a nickname but my older sister said that I should call the shop ‘Bubba’s’.
How did Bubba’s come about and what is the concept?
I really enjoyed working in the coffee industry so I brought it to Koh Phangan.
I like early mornings and making coffee. We try to make a good breakfast, which is sometimes hard to find on Koh Phangan. We use ingredients like Edam cheese, brown bread and specialty coffee to offer our customers comfort food.
I chose Ban Tai because of the many resorts and residents. Besides that there is no Café that opens up early, so I thought there might be a market there.
What do you feel it brings to Koh Phangan and the Ban Tai area in particular?
Good coffee! It’s a cafe that opens up early, something different from all the parties and hostels.
You have become popular with tourists and locals alike, why do you think that is?
Because I try to have a western part, full service, free table water, a bit of what they know from their own country but why they come here I don’t know, I should ask them!
What sorts of things do you offer?
Mueslis, eggs on toast, sandwiches, bagels and weekly specials.
Freshly roasted coffee made with love. Homemade masala chai, ginger beer and much more.
What do you want Bubba’s to become over the next few months?
I will just be happy to see returning customers, people who appreciate the food and drinks.
What do you like to do when you have free time on the island?
Go to the beach, I particularly like the east coast. Also to drive my motorbike although I don’t have one at the moment so I drive the scooter. First I will have to make some money to get a proper motorbike!
And what is your life philosophy?
Just don’t worry...be happy.
Whilst we were at Bubba’s getting the low down on how it all began we obviously had to try their famous coffee and breakfast!
We had the eggs benedict, Avo toast, Shakshuka and a Pulled Pork bagel. Bubba's use the best ingredients they can get, real cheese, brown bread and nothing artificial. Everything is home made including the delicious pesto which you will find on the avo toast and their tangy hollandaise sauce.
The pulled pork was beautifully cooked, the avo toast was fresh, served with cherry tomatoes and black olives (a popular choice and possibly Phanganist's favourite!).
Bubba's also offers gluten free and vegan choices and also take away with packaging that is bio-degradable!
We would definitely recommend that you go to Bubba's yourself, it is a warm, comfortable coffee shop which is perfect for those long breakfast mornings, enjoy!