Umami Coffee. 10A Darcy St, Parramatta. Block out the walk past the train line at Parramatta and you could see yourself in a lane way cafe in Melbourne: this is a good fit-out, and one with attention to detail on the quirky details of interior design.
They’ve made a lot of a tiny space – I’m not sure I’ve seen a smaller sink for the self-serve water!
The staff are knowledgeable about their product – we have a long chat about whether to try the house blend as a long black or a macchiato, and they’re only too happy to add in a bit of milk when I realise they’re right, and its strength (tailored for their most popular coffee – a large flat white) is too great without the milk.
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Five Senses Coffee. 21 Wentworth St, Parramatta. This came to my attention as the winner of the SMH Good Cafe Guide awards 2013 (disclosure: I was paid to write some reviews in that guide, but had been buying my own copy for a few years – it’s a really useful guidebook). Only open on weekdays, I had to wait until I had a day of annual leave before making the journey, but I’m very glad I did.
It was a bit chilly inside on the day we visited, so we had a table out in the sun, tried the food, the decaf, the cold drip, and even the single origin. The food is excellent, and the coffee is beyond my skill as a taster to fault. Service was friendly, knowledgable and ever helpful. Deserves its reputation.
Parramatta (at least during the week) is finally a place where a decent coffee can be found.
Official website: http://circaespresso.com.au/
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