The Grounds, Alexandria

the grounds, alexandria

The Grounds Roasters coffee. Shop 7A, 2 Huntley Street Alexandria. A lot of buzz about this place, not lest winning the best new cafe in the 2012 Sydney Cafe Guide, this place has been on my to-visit list for a long while. It must be the largest cafe of its kind – 1800 square metres, and mostly outdoor seating. This is no Bunnings, though: each piece has been carefully chosen to work together: there’s also a vegetable garden, herbs growing, a small playground, and a fountain.

the grounds, alexandria

Knowing how crowded this place was likely to be, we call in at 2pm on a weekday for a visit – it’s only a few moments at the “please wait to be seated” sign, and parking is slightly easier to find. This is certainly a place for the well-to-do crowd, or the inner city hipsters. Contrast this news interactive article with the review from the Sydney Morning Herald to get a sense of which crowd finds more of an appeal (hint: it’s the latter). 

the grounds, alexandria

Food is really well put together, though on the expensive side. Here’s the za’atar with heirloom tomatoes, avocado, feta on toast: $14. 

lights - the small details - the grounds, alexandria

It’s the little touches, though, that make you feel better about being separated from your money in this way: this line of light globes is beautiful and functional. 

playground - the grounds, alexandria

The playground has a certain amount of character: here’s the balance-beam lizard. 

the grounds, alexandria

Stay long enough and you’ll be able to see it this empty – you could get a seat straight away at, say, 3pm on a weekday, but they’re definitely winding down by then.


guide to coffee - the grounds, alexandria

Coffee is taken really seriously: sit in the right part of the cafe and you can watch co-owner Jack Hanna roasting the coffee. The decaf reminds me of the first time I had his “Jack and the Bean” coffee in Home Espresso in North Sydney. I enjoyed the decaf more than its caffeinated counterpart, but it’s possible my palette was overwhelmed by the food (the lamb salad was fantastic).


View Larger Map

Join the Conversation


  1. Loyal follower of your blog Dave! Great photography and honest write ups. I've noticed that you frequent the city/ innerwest quite often. However if you're ever on the North Shore side, I'd definitely recommend you check out Thyme Square in Hornsby. It's the only coffee worth having in the area (nice to see they use Jack in the bean).

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.