Down Under Series: Favorite Cafes in Sydney
Australia is known for its third wave coffee culture and all day brunch scene. This is quickly evident in Sydney where every street and district has its coffee spot, brunch place...Or BOTH. Throughout my nearly 6 month stay, I scoured Sydney for cafes and these are a few of my favorite spots.
1. QVB Jet Bar Caffè
Address: Queen Victoria Building, 55/455 George St.
Situated in Queen Victoria Building or commonly known as QVB in Town Hall, this building was built as a monument for Queen Victoria in 1898 and has long been turned into a mall but still retaining it's beautiful architecture.
My amazing cousin brought me here upon my arrival and my first stop upon setting foot in the city. It was the best greeting and anticipation for the adventures to come, not to mention that their baristas look like Calvin Klein models on their day off.
2. The Grounds of the City
Address: Shop RG 12, 500 George St.
Right in the middle of Sydney CBD, and just right next to the iconic QVB and Town Hall, there is a gem of a coffee find - The Grounds in the City. Unlike its more popular sister in Alexandria, this cafe is much more accessible and still instagrammable AF. Upon entering, you instantly notice the ambiance of the place, totally different from the usual cafes. It has a dim moody lighting more suitable for romantic dinner dates.
3. The Pool Cafe
Address: 94 Marine Parade, Maroubra
A short walk from Maroubra Beach is a not-so-secret local hotspot and if you're not into getting sand in your bum then you will definitely prefer to enjoy your swimming session and sunbaking in Mahon Rock Pool.
4. Room 10 Cafe
Address: 10 Llankelly Place, Potts Point
The first time I went to Sydney, King's Cross and Potts Point were known as a red light and junkie district. People were alarmed when they found out I've been there already, saying 'it's not a safe place there'.
This time around, the area looked rehabilitated and different from the Kings Cross of ages ago. It's more of a hip, artsy and some would even say elevated part of Sydney, with home grown entrepreneurs setting shop and small intimate restos and cafes. I came upon a small laneway while walking about, the place was full and happy me found out it was a cafe. Being adverse to queueing, I didn't line up and went ahead my merry way.
5. Gertrude and Alice
Address: 1/46 Hall St, Bondi Beach
I met up with one of my close friends studying in Sydney. Knowing my love for coffee - she took me here and boy, was I glad. The place is fairly close, a walking distance from the beach. I was delighted to be shown this combination of bookstore slash cafe, two of my favorite things in the world.
6. The Grounds of Alexandria
Address: 7a/2 Huntley St, Alexandria
This was a bucket list cafe stop for my Sydney trip. I've seen the posts and also noticed that it's on every Sydney's Must Try Cafe list. I wanted to check it for myself, if the high expectation did indeed match reality. I would suggest going during the weekend since they have a weekly farmer's market with fresh produce, flowers etc giving off a very energetic vibe. The Grounds is also known to have specially themed decors from Alice in Wonderland to Easter and even an Elton John Yellow Brick Road installation.
7. Cuckoo Callay on Crown
Address: 413 Crown St, Surry Hills
Another one of my surprising coffee finds. Cuckoo Callay is a quirky cafe offering colorful fusion menu. It's located in Surry Hill which is known for its cool cafes and abundant LGBTQ+ community. I attempted a coffee hop previously but unbeknownst to me, cafes in Australia are usually closed by 3 or 4 pm. I'm more used to the Philippines with their 24 hr coffee culture, or atleast until the late evening.
You can say Sydney spoiled my coffee cravings and gave me literal caffeine highs. Heck, even their 711 coffee are surprisingly good. No joke! For $1, you can enjoy good coffee, relax in Hyde Park and chill for a while. I'm not sure if it's the weather, my mood and just the fact that I can while away my time.
My coffee loving heart has fallen in love with the coffee and cafes in Sydney. I even took Barista coffee classes to educate myself, learn more and further appreciate coffee. Melbourne was a different coffee culture and scene altogether - and that as they say is for another story.