10 Cafes to Visit in Melbourne

An impetuous decision led the café-hopping buddies and I to five short yet fruitful (or should I say food-ful) days in the city of Melbourne. There was not a day we went without caffeine, brunch and alcohol. In mourning of the fact that we simply had no time for the scenic Great Ocean Road and Philips Island, we stuffed… and stuffed.

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  1. Industry Beans – For brunch in an industrial setting

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Also a great spot for al fresco dining. We had a few brunch dishes here like the Green Papaya and Peanut Crusted Egg (AUD19) – carrot, beanshoots, peanuts, coriander and nahm jim – but the desserts stood out the most.

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It has been months but the Coffee Garden (AUD14) – coffee custard pudding, coffee caviar, chocolate soil, pistachio sponge and tuille – is still that memorable. The distinct coffee flavour from the pudding and unique coffee caviar is quite out of this world and the thought of lingering coffee aftertaste remains.

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And if you like warm, gooey marshmallows, the Kaffir Lime Marshmallow (AUD12) – micro coriander, warmed ginger custard and crumb – is a must try.

3/62 Rose St, Fitzroy VIC 3065, Australia

Mon – Fri 7am – 4pm, Sat – Sun 8am – 4pm

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  1. Hammer and Tong 412 – For extraordinary brunch dishes

Hammer and Tong is a hot place to be among the Melbournians, so be there early or be prepared to wait in line. We thankfully got a table in 30 minutes.

The ox cheek of the Ox Cheek Benedict (AUD18.5) – poached eggs, hollandaise, fermented & pickled chilli on sourdough – was the highlight of this dish, being tender with a tinge of spice. Australians still take pride in whipping out a mean dish of eggs benedict.

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Ice cream and candied bacon?! You did not read the menu wrongly. This extraordinary, breakfast item may have some acquired taste to it, but is definitely worth the try. The bacon is served cold, unfried and of a thicker cut. When eaten with the ice cream, the taste is hard to describe – an unusual yet satisfying mix of sweet and savoury. Duck Egg & Candied Bacon Waffle (AUD21) – sriracha caramel ice cream, toffee popcorn, maple & seeded mustard syrup

We couldn’t bear to dig into the beautifully plated Strawberry Frozen Yoghurt Parfait (AUD15) – basil, fruits, black rice granola & shortcake crumble – till the end. But when we did dig in, it made for a very sweet finish to our brunch.

412 Brunswick St, Fitzroy VIC 3065, Australia

7am – 4pm daily

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  1. Lune Croissanterie – For the best croissants in Asia Pacific

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Read the full review here.

119 Rose St, Fitzroy VIC 3065, Australia

Mon, Thu – Fri 7.30am – 3pm, Sat – Sun 8am – 3pm

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  1. Top Paddock – For that plate of ricotta hotcake

Dubbed the origin of the famed ricotta hotcake, Top Paddock was once the Top brunch pick when it first opened for business, and remains a Top spot. Though the Blueberry & Ricotta Hotcake with Berries, Maple Syrup, Seeds & Cream (AUD21) here is nearly identical in taste and appearance to that at The Kettle Black, I couldn’t help but order it again.

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We also tried the Coconut Chia Pudding with Qld. Pineapple, Raspberries, Elderflower Syrup & Buckwheat Crumble (AUD17) and Fresh Qld. Soft-shell Mud Crab with Fennel & Dill Salad & Lime Mayonnaise in a Brioche Bun (AUD24). It was hard finding anything to nitpick on.

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658 Church St, Richmond VIC 3121, Australia

Mon – Fri 7am – 4pm, Sat – Sun 8am – 4pm

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  1. The Kettle Black – For that plate of ricotta hotcake… in a white setting

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Read the full review here.

50 Albert Road, South Melbourne VIC 3205, Australia

Mon – Fri 7am – 4pm, Sat – Sun 8am – 4pm

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  1. Hash Specialty Coffee and Roaster – For an underrated, hidden gem in the CBD

Our late lunch at Hash was an unplanned one – we just needed a place to rest our legs. It turned out to be surprisingly impressive.

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My personal favorite was the Summer Waffle (AUD17.5) – Toasted Waffle, Citrus Ricotta, Grilled Mango, Macadamia Crumb. Served Belgian style, the waffles were slathered in a sinful dose of maple syrup, sandwiching sweet mango and sprinkled with ricotta. It appealed very much to the sweet tooth in me and the tad of citrus flavor helped balance the sweetness.

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We also thought the Hot Chocolate (AUD6) – 85% Mork Chocolate served with a healthy dose of fairy floss could be ordinary or even subpar hot chocolate disguised as a gimmick with conical flasks and girl-attracting fairy floss, but it was actually legit.

113 Hardware St, Melbourne VIC 3000, Australia

Mon – Fri 7am – 4pm, Sat – Sun 8am – 5pm

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  1. The Kitchen at Weylandts – For amazing light, shadows and decor

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Within the furniture shop Weylandts (which screams interior goals by the way) is The Kitchen at Weylandts. The café may only take up a small corner of the entire store but I did take longer than expected to shoot here. I was literally trying to photograph every corner. Will deffo do brunch here if I’m ever back in the city.

200 Gipps St, Abbotsford VIC 3067, Australia

Mon – Fri 7.30am – 4pm, Sat – Sun 8am – 4pm

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  1. Tall Timber – For their Tall white brick walls

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En route to Prahran Market, we passed by Tall Timber unintentionally and got very tempted by its white-washed brick walls and wooden tables. This is one place I could sit all day in, admiring the simple, minimal interiors.

60 Commercial Road, Prahran VIC 3181, Australia

Mon – Fri 7am – 4pm, Sat – Sun 7.30am – 4pm

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  1. St. Ali

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Housed in a huge, converted warehouse space is St. Ali Coffee Roasters. St. Ali is known to be a pioneer of the specialty coffee movement of single estate and single origin coffee beans, and a contributor to the third coffee wave in Melbourne, which means that this is the place to be for coffee addicts.

12 – 18 Yarra Pl, South Melbourne VIC 3205, Australia

7am – 6pm daily

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  1. Doughboys Doughnuts – For fancy flavoured donuts

Quite possibly the most popular doughnut chain here, Doughboys Doughnuts opened a permanent store just last year and is extremely convenient if you’re in the CBD. On display are both staple and rotating flavours. You also get a behind-the-scenes glimpse of doughnut baking through an open kitchen concept. Our favourite had to be the Key Lime Pie (AUD5.5) – lime curd filled Doughsie with toasted meringue and lime spiked pie crumbs. The lime curd especially won us over, with its perfect level of both sweet and sourness.

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We also had Bullseye (AUD5.5) – House made berry compote Doughsie on vanilla bean icing with soft shortbread crumble and Butterscotch Banana (AUD5) – butterscotch topped creamed banana Heilala vanilla bean icing dusted with house made chocolate brownie crumbs. The latter two were a tad too sweet, and we had to admit that the doughnuts are not cheap at all.

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535 Bourke St, Melbourne VIC 3000, Australia

Mon – Fri 7am – 4.30pm

Some extras for you:

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Rustica Sourdough – For that all-too-pretty Ispahan Croissant

As we were exploring Fitzroy, we passed by a bakery-café with a long (but fast-moving) queue so we peered inside. The first thing that caught our eye was the stretch of gorgeous pastries on display, including danishes, croissants, cronuts and brioche donuts. Of course we had to go for the prettiest one – the Ispahan Croissant (AUD6.50) – twice baked with rose, lychee, almond and raspberry.  Rosewater icing and dried flower petals served as icing on the croissant which made it look enticing. Beneath the flaky layers was a filling of rose, lychee, raspberry and almonds. I wished there could be more distinct lychee and rose flavours though it was not all too bad.

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402 Brunswick St, Fitzroy VIC 3065, Australia

Mon – Sat 7am – 4pm, Sun 8am – 4pm

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N2 Extreme Gelato – For instagram-worthy gelato

We went for one of the most popular flavours, the Ferrero Reveal (AUD8) – chocolate syringe, rice bubble chocolate top, nutella and hazelnut gelato with rice bubbles. Sad to say, we felt that it was overrated as the nutella flavoured gelato didn’t live up to our expectations. We expected some stronger, thicker, more luscious taste of nutella but ended up with a faint taste. Later, we were informed about Gelato Messina which was deemed by Melbournians to be a better pick for gelato. Aesthetics go to N2 Extreme though.

18 Sutherland St, Melbourne VIC 3000, Australia

Mon – Thu 1pm – 10pm, Fri – Sat 1pm – 11pm


One thought on “10 Cafes to Visit in Melbourne

  1. […] Located in the industrial area near Taman Mount Austin is People and Places, a 2 months old café serving up Melbournian brunch and coffee. Having already seen pictures on Instagram, I knew what to expect. Everything from the 2-storey high ceiling to the concrete layout to the drapey plants and succulent furnishings completed the look of the industrial warehouse café theme. It reminded me so much of my laid back, café hopping days in Melbourne. […]

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