Home to a thriving café culture, Sydney showcases a huge variety of coffees, foods and personalities between its many cafés. Check out some of the best cafés in Sydney and start your morning on the right note.
Fika Swedish Kitchen, Manly
5B Market Place, Manly
It might not be the biggest name in Sydney’s café scene, but Fika Swedish Kitchen serves up food and drink that easily competes with the best. Situated just a stone’s throw from Manly Corso, this vibrant eatery uses bright white, yellow and blue decor to emphasise its Swedish roots. The menu at Fika Swedish Kitchen is similarly true to its name; here, you can find Filmjölk (traditional Swedish yoghurt), smoked eel scrambled eggs, and yes—Swedish meatballs with mashed potato, gravy, and lingonberry jam.
Circa Espresso, Parramatta
21 Wentworth Street, Parramatta
In 2010, Circa Espresso managed to transform an unremarkable laneway into Parramatta’s favourite hole-in-the-wall café. With a graffitied entrance masked by buildings on each side, first-time visitors can count on the cluster of people waiting outside to know they’ve found the right place. Once you’ve found a seat among the eclectic decor, check out the ever-popular food menu, or sample what many claim to be the best coffee outside of inner Sydney.
Trio, Bondi Beach
56 Campbell Parade, Bondi Beach
Soak up front-row views of Bondi Beach from one of Sydney’s most popular cafés. From its prime location on Campbell Parade, Trio has been using Middle Eastern and Mediterranean flavours to transform Bondi’s brunch game. Those who love simple pleasures should try the brunch bruschetta of goat cheese, spinach, semi-dried tomatoes, basil and poached eggs. For a full-flavoured adventure, start your morning with a shakshouka: two eggs poached in a spiced, smokey ragout, served with turkish bread and hummus.
The Grounds of Alexandria Café, Alexandria
7a/2 Huntley Street, Alexandria
Surrounded by trellised vines and the calls of farmyard animals, The Grounds of Alexandria houses one of Sydney’s most beautiful cafés. Get into the rustic atmosphere with wholesome breakfast bowls, slow-cooked shoulders of lamb, and the café’s signature twist on avocado and toast. With optional extras ranging from hot-smoked salmon to hazelnut-crumbed mushrooms (and an on-site bakery to boot!), this café is more than just a pretty face.
Bourke Street Bakery, Surry Hills
633 Bourke Street, Surry Hills
What this Sydney institution lacks in size, it more than makes up in flavour. Now with a whopping 11 stores across Sydney, Bourke Street Bakery has earned its stripes transforming humble meat pies and sausage rolls into the stuff of legends. Serving all manner of artisan breads, pastries and sweet treats, this café in leafy Surry Hills is a great place to soak up the early morning sun or catch up with friends over coffee.
291 Annandale Street, Annandale
On a quiet street in Annandale, a 19th-century corner store now houses one of Sydney’s most popular cafés. Revolver is a quaint spot which combines wooden floorboards with upholstered chairs and a charming atmosphere. Find a cosy table to relax with a bowl of stewed rhubarb and cinnamon porridge, or head outside to enjoy some fresh air––perhaps with smoked ocean trout, spinach, caper crème fraiche and avocado on a corn rosti. The menu is simple but skilfully executed, with tempting specials scrawled on the blackboard each day.
Campos Coffee, Newtown
193 Missenden Road, Newtown
Since 2002, Campos Coffee has helped to establish Sydney as a city of coffee lovers and connoisseurs. In fact, this small shop in Newtown has grown to become one of the biggest names in Australian coffee. Let the knowledgeable baristas at Campos brew the perfect cup of coffee for your palate, or head upstairs for a full tasting session and introduction to some of their favourite single-origin coffees in the Campos Cupping Room.
John Smith Specialty Coffee, Waterloo
1 John Street, Waterloo
A grey, blocky building on a main road—this isn’t the sort of place you’d expect to find outstanding coffee and food, but John Smith serves it up regardless. A fairly new addition to Sydney’s café scene, John Smith Specialty Coffee brings a welcome touch of creativity and colour to its industrial surrounds. Slide into a booth or pull up a bar stool before tasting some of the finest coffee in Sydney. Foodies can opt for established favourites such as burgers and variations on eggs benedict, or wait for seasonal specialties such as butter-roasted field mushrooms with black pudding, maple syrup, sweet potato mash and porcini cream sauce.
Café Cre Asion, CBD
21 Alberta Street, Sydney
Tucked away in the CBD, Café Cre Asion is a small but heavy-hitting café known for its sweets, teas (both Japanese and French) and breakfasts. The savoury menu is surprisingly modest, with just a handful of sandwiches and a few simple breakfasts to choose from. That said, there’s no denying the main attraction that draws so many visitors here each week: matcha. Café Cre Asion is rumoured to craft the best bowls of matcha latte in Sydney, while dessert lovers come from far and wide to watch their famous matcha fondants collapse in person.
Three Williams, Redfern
613A Elizabeth Street, Redfern
Three Williams is an airy, warehouse-style café located in the heart of Redfern. This spacious venue includes a kids’ corner with a giant chalkboard wall, making it a top choice for families and those with children. The all-day menu includes classic breakfast dishes, innovative salads, and more than a few indulgences. Tuck into a king salmon poké bowl, treat yourself to Golden Gaytime french toast, or try the famous Portuguese chicken narnie (naan bread sarni).
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