The first round of Melbourne life, we stayed at the west side of the city, close to two of my favourite coffee places; Brother Baba Budan and Sensory Lab. Known for one of the better coffees (won't say best, just in case I get some connoisseur telling me otherwise), I got quite fidgety when I was greeted with crap coffee in Brisbane. Luckily, the stars must have been listening because PourBoy opened somewhere along the way to work and on weekends we had Dandelion and Driftwood to go to.
Having moved down to St Kilda Road for our second stint of Melbourne life, I must admit I was (and still am) a bit lost as to where I can get my caffeine fix. Essentially the tram stops on Flinders St / Swanston St and from there it is a 5 minute walk to Exhibition St to work. Now something tells me (if you look at the Melbourne CBD map) that it is not exactly "on the way to work" for me to venture to the other side of town for my favourite coffee.
So having observed quite a number of places, I thought I list a few that I have tried so far.
Oliver Lane Espresso - 140 Flinders St, Melbourne -It is a small little corner, efficiently manned (or "womanned") by a lady who takes the order, makes the coffee and collects the money all at the same time. A decent regular latte but probably let down by the milk, lacked the creaminess and felt slightly flat. AUD 3.30 for a cup. 3 stars out of 5 stars.
Bull Run - 107 Flinders Lane, Melbourne - Really friendly barista and cashier and this is probably why there is a small crowd every morning I walk past the place. I must have had the "zombie look" on a Monday because the barista asked if I wanted a strong latte after I placed an order for a regular one. Not too sure if it was a good choice because it tasted "in your face", bitter and over extracted. Good thing though, only AUD3 for my 8oz takeaway cup. 3 stars out of 5 stars, might improve if I stick to my regular latte.
Two Fingers - 27 Russell Street, Melbourne - Another small little outlet and from what I read, offers breakfast and lunch options too. The coffee was decent, won't say great but if I remember correctly though, it was AUD 3.60 or AUD 3.80 for my 8oz takeaway cup. 3 stars out of 5 stars, can't see why I am paying the slight extra for my cup of coffee.
Liaison Cafe - 22 Ridgway Place, Melbourne - This is slightly out of the way and situated in one of the many lanes in Melbourne CBD. The double ristretto latte (or "strong" latte as the cashier wrote on my cup) was again a cup that was in your face. By now I have realised, only order a double ristretto if they serve one and ask for a regular if they suggest strong. That being said, once the temperature mellowed down a little, this was a potent drink but I loved it. AUD 3.50 for a regular. 3.5 stars out of 5 stars.
No 8 Exhibition Cafe - 8 Exhibition Street, Melbourne - By far the most convenient since it is on the lobby of my building, the latte is pretty good but nothing special. AUD 3.30 for a regular. 3.5 stars out of 5 stars.
Still on the look out for-that-must-have cup of coffee in the morning.
The adventure continues.