Toby’s estate coffee. 20 Bond St, Sydney. Really large, licensed restaurant feel indoors, where suited businessmen catch up for lunch and a beer or to split a bottle of wine.
If you’re not in the mood for the full experience, an open window provides access to “chicane express” – takeaway coffees and breakfast and lunch deals.
There’s a decaf grinder, and the coffee is pleasant, well-made with good milk work. A good spot to grab a quick takeaway if you’re in the area.
Toby’s Estate coffee. 1 Castlereagh St, Sydney. The last time I was drinking coffee here, it was a Hudson’s Coffee franchise store, but now it’s been remodelled. In the corner, two chesterfields with a coffee table, elsewhere are larger tables and benches with stools: there are a range of options for eating in.
They’re selling brasserie bread products – I had a fantastic ham and cheese panini – really good balance between the ingredients: a great breakfast starter.
Not the cheapest cafe in the city – it’s $3.80 for a large takeaway coffee, and then a decaf tax of 50c on top, but they have a decaf grinder, and the coffee comes out with a smooth, earthy flavour. A solid cup, and an elegant, well-lit environment to enjoy it.
Toby’s Estate coffee. Ground floor lobby, 477 Pitt St, Sydney Central. Seating for 16, in a spacious lobby.
There’s a big range of sandwiches and cakes to choose from, and no small amount of beans on sale too. The coffee machine is centre stage, with the cheery staff buzzing around behind it.
Sadly, the coffee is disappointing. It’s very hot, the milk is thin, and there’s a slight burnt taste to it.
Workshop coffee / Toby’s Estate decaf. Shop RG01A, the Galeries Victoria, 500 George St, Sydney. Not much bigger than a hole in the wall, opposite the town hall side entrance to the QVB, there are two espresso machines and three grinders, and a kitchen out the back.
Somehow they have crammed in a bench and a series of stools, seating four or five, but their core business is clearly takeaway, and the queue is clearly evident.
The food is a little pricey, but competitive here in the CBD, and the range of sandwiches is broad.
Coffee is very good: the crema is strong, milk is well put together.
Worth a visit: I would say the best coffee on its block.
Piazza D’oro coffee. Shop 56, ground floor, QVB Sydney 2000. Sitting in the open spaces of the ground floor of the cafe is a rather distracting area if you’re trying to concentrate on some writing. There are signs saying “free wifi” on the table, but if – like me – you’ve approached the counter and ordered, there’s nothing to easily explain how to access this wifi.
The coffee here, though it makes me uneasy on first sip, settles down to be a pleasant, milky cup. It’s certainly an easy enough coffee to drink: not exceptional, but sufficient.
Genovese Coffee. Shop W39, Wynyard Station Arcade, Carrington Street,
Sydney. In an arcade sits this little diamond in the rough. The food has a bit of an edge to it, and there is quite a wide range of choice for a relatively small place. There’s even a small amount of seating down one side, though you’ll find yourself trying to relax in what amounts to a walkway for the staff.
Though there’s no decaf grinder, the decaf is quite alright – this is a fine choice to grab a breakfast on the run.
Campos Coffee. 37 York St, Wynyard. From the street frontage you wouldn’t realise that there is quite a lot of seating in the back of this cafe. Prices seem a little high, though its proximity to Wynyard and the banking district has to be a factor here.
The coffee-making staff work in a separate bubble to the rest of the staff: when they’re finished, they present a decaf latte that is very hot, but pleasant tasting: the traditional well-made Campos cup.
Pablo and Rusty’s coffee. Shop 18, 401-403 Sussex St, Sydney. Downstairs from Happy Chef, I’ve long wondered what the coffee was like, but had never been here at the right time of day – until now!
It’s literally a hole in the wall, with no seating at all, but for the name, I thought I’d include it in the review.
Coffee is handed to me wrapped in a serviette, as if it were an ice
cream cone! It’s a pleasant enough, milky cup – lacking nuance, but
neither burnt nor metallic, which was my fear. Surprisingly good coffee: don’t let first appearances fool you.
Andronicus coffee. Taking up a lot of the open, undercover space in the Galleries forecourt is this large, friendly-looking cafe.
The decaf is really quite good: thick milk, just the right temperature, and pleasant tasting. I haven’t tried much from Andronicus, but I’ll be less shy next time I see the brand.
Allpress Espresso coffee. 60 Park St, Sydney (opposite Starbucks). It might be considered brave to set up a cafe across the road from the first Starbucks in Sydney, but this place doesn’t seem worried. Modern design with lots of straight lines and a repetitive dance beat, and an interior colour palette that it mostly black and grey, with red highlights. The cafe has the usual menu options: sandwiches and salads.
Coffee is the usual Allpress standard: a perfectly reasonable cup, but there’s nothing here that particularly draws me back to keep visiting.