Written and photographed by Maureen Mai.
I heard many great things about the vast Australian coffee culture. So, on a recent trip to Sydney, I decided to check it out for myself. Australians take their coffee very seriously. They care about the taste and quality of the coffee they consume, as well as the atmosphere in which they consume it. Here are two different types of coffee shops. Locals and tourists recommended the first shop, and I happily discovered the other café by chance. (This blog post is unsponsored. There are occasions during my travels when I discover some interesting places which I like to share.)
The Grounds of Alexandria
Building 7A, 2 Huntley Street, Alexandria, NSW 2015 Australia
· Café, bakery/patisserie, brekkie, brunch, lunch, dinner, bar, cakes, and catering
· Indoor/outdoor seating and shop
While in Sydney, make your way to The Grounds of Alexandria, a mega-café popular with locals and tourists alike. Located in a revamped industrial suburb of Sydney, this place is becoming Instagram famous. Try to avoid it on weekends and during peak holiday times, or you’ll be swept away by tourists posing for every photo-op imaginable. This café is also a fashionable event space, spanning nearly an acre of land.
The Grounds of Alexandria is not just about great coffee; it’s an experience. Expect to be surrounded by a sustainable garden with a café set in a rustic backdrop. There’s a restaurant, an artisan bakery, a relaxing bar called the Potting Shed, and a garden shop. You’ll find a chicken coop and an array of farm animals. The new star of these animals is the Harry Trotter pig, who has replaced Keven Bacon, now retired and living on an Australian farm.
But, let’s get back to the real reason for your visit to this café, the excellent coffee. The Grounds of Alexandria has an onsite roastery and coffee academy, where customers can take classes on how to make a delicious cup of coffee at home. The employees are friendly, and their seasonal brekkie menu offers many delicious options.
If you can’t make it out to Alexandria, try their other location, The Grounds of the City, in downtown Sydney’s central business district. (500 George Street, Sydney, NSW, 2000)
Fika By Cuppa Flower
Shop 3, 7 Central Park Avenue, Chippendale, NSW 2008 Australia
· “Fresh coffee, food, and flowers” – Fika
· Indoor seating
Fika models the theme of their café on the Swedish tradition of taking an essential coffee break, usually accompanied by a delicious pastry treat. It’s a treasured moment during a busy day to relax and make time for oneself, or to spend time socializing with friends and colleagues.
The atmosphere in this lovely café is bright and soothingly decorated with beautiful flowers. Walk up to the counter where you will be spoiled for choice by the delicious pastries of the day. Or, order your favorite breakfast or lunch item off of the menu. Their delicious soufflé pancake is one of their specialties, served with fresh fruit, unsweetened whipped cream, and maple syrup. It is so light and fluffy; it’s sure to be a heavenly treat. Or, try the flower jelly with a delicate custard and refreshing lychee taste.
Now, go and try taking your own Fika break.
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