Sifter Espresso, Wollongong

Sifters Espresso, Wollongong

Various different coffees. 82 Market St, Wollongong. Follow them on instagram and you could be forgiven for thinking there’s an indoor cafe at play here, but in fact, this is a combination of shipping containers and portable furniture. Sadly there was too much full sun in play for us to linger too long, but the stay we had (sitting on astro-turfed cubes) was fun. 

Sifters Espresso, Wollongong

There are plenty of different single origins to try (and some simple advice on how to have your coffee that manages not to be condescending), but it was the pour over that won the day for me.

A shipping container with a difference - Sifters Espresso, Wollongong

Great to see such passion for coffee in such a humble environment as a modified shipping container. Part of the emerging coffee scene in Wollongong, and well worth a visit. They even have brewnuts somehow (a daily round-trip to Newtown, I’m reliably informed)!

Single Origin Roasters Mothership, Botany

Single Origin Roasters Mothership, Botany

Single Origin Roasters. 28B Cranbrook St, Botany. I’ve been going to the original Single Origin Roasters shop for at least eight years, and it’s evolved a lot in that time – growing, spawning an extra cafe just for selling takeaway coffees, and moving its roaster off-site.

This new store represents their latest development, bringing their signature approach to food and coffee sales to some spec at the front of their roastery. When we arrive on a rainy day, it’s near empty, but by the time we leave, it’s filled up.

Single Origin Roasters Mothership, Botany

Food and coffee are to the usual high standard, though the prices are also premium. Worth a visit.

Twig cafe, Surry Hills

twig cafe, surry hills

Single Origin Roasters coffee. 357 Cleveland St, Surry Hills. Adjacent to a garden shop is this cafe – a mix of indoor and outdoor seating that’s busy for most of its opening time.

where the magic happens - twig cafe, surry hills

As you can see from the surrounds of the coffee machine, there’s a lot going on here. A mix of food offerings, flowers, knick-knacks, but still plenty of room to place orders at the counter and work the EFTPOS machine.

twig cafe, surry hills

They’re keen on local, sustainable produce. While I’ve only tried the ham and cheese muffin thus far, it was well put together, and suggests that the remainder of the menu will be equally polished. There are certainly plenty of favourable reviews of their food online.

Coffee too is good – they do a mean decaf long black that’s worth saving on the long walk back towards Central.


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swallow coffee traders, rockdale

sparrow coffee traders, rockdale

Single Origin Roaster Coffee. 1 Tramway Arcade, Rockdale (near Rockdale train station). I’ve never thought of Rockdale as a place to find good coffee, but the Coffee Guide app that I bought showed it as a place that was open on Sundays, and not the furthest from my house, so when the opportunity arose, I headed over. Tramway arcade runs from Rockdale station to the Princess Highway – it’s only a handful of steps away from the steps to Rockdale station.

range of coffees - sparrow coffee traders, rockdale

This place has a small footprint though they’ve tried to make the most of it – even the tiny outdoor space has a little table and a chair. There’s seating on a handful of small tables, and a host of coffee-making equipment. The weekday menu is compact; a choice of sandwiches, some brasserie bread pastries, and some other cakes that are made on the premises (notably a pistachio friand made with hazelnut meal).

where the magic happens, sparrow coffee traders, rockdale

Though there are two grinders next to the coffee machine, one is for the main caffeinated coffee, and the smaller grinder next to it is for the single origin of the day. Nonetheless, the decaf for my decaf latte is ground to order in a third grinder that’s generally used to grind up take-home beans. The coffee is even better than I was hoping for – this place is doing great work, and is well worth a visit.

You can get up-to-date information about them (including their opening hours) from the Swallow coffee Facebook page.

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Sole espresso, Newtown

Sole espresso, Newtown

Single origin coffee. 13/330 King St, Newtown (near the train station). A range of different furniture options: gives a comfortable feel, like a lounge room away from home.

Very pleasant, well made decaf latte: the milk looks thin coming out of the jug, but the texture is fine. And they have a decaf grinder!

Well worth revisiting; perhaps to try the ample food menu.

The Egg & Soldier, Glebe

The Egg & Soldier, Glebe

Single Origin coffee. 379 Glebe Point Rd, Glebe. Having now been open a couple of months, it seems that this place has found its groove. With the feel of a converted old milkbar: subdued lighting and a metal roller-door guarding the entrance, there’s a sense of history about the place.

The staff, though helpful and accommodating, are not completely knowledgeable about the menu, which is a little odd: there’s not so much there that it would be confusing. As far as pricing, the full breakfast (available all day) is $14.

There’s a little Sunbeam grinder off to the side for decaf – a suggestion that they’re not expecting to sell a lot of decaf, but at least they have the grinder!

Coffee is good enough – a thick head of foam and an earthy flavour.

piccolo latte, egg and soldier