8 of the best coffee experiences in Brisbane
Take it from someone who walks past not just one, but seven other coffee shops to get her perfect cup of joe every day – a person’s relationship with their barista is so much more than just transactional.
It’s as scientific as the farming, processing, roasting and grinding process that goes behind each cup of coffee. And that’s because one does not simply leave their first sip of the nectar-of-the-gods to chance, do they?
With so many baristas-in-the-Brisbane-sea, how do you find the perfect coffee experience?
You need e-Harmony for Brisbane’s best coffee, which is why we’re spilling the beans on our top picks for beaut brew experiences around the River City.
Go on, give ‘em a (double) shot.
1. Blackstar, West End and Brisbane City
The little coffee-cart that once served up cold-pressed brews at the Davies Park Markets has grown up and graduated into a grungey West End brewing house, roasting some of Brisbane’s best beans. Their brews are 100% hot, delicious, and fair-trade organic, so your heart-starter comes with a shot of do-gooder.
From their West End cafe, you can expect vintage-style furniture, music and crockery that ooze eclectic charm. In the city, they kick things up a notch at Blackstar Contessa, which is so enviably trendy, you’ll feel cool just sipping the black stuff from this hole-in-the-Roma-St wall.
2. Bunker, Milton
Nestled in the inner-city sanctum of Milton, Bunker lures passing coffee-addicts with the promise of coffee served out of a converted WWII air-raid hideout. Sitting pretty just near Milton train station, this is the perfect pit-stop to bunker down for your daily dose of liquid gold.
More than just a morning pick-me-up spot, their cake cabinet is stocked daily with a selection of tasty morsels from local baker, Alphabet Cafe. Pair a pastry with coffee, and you might have to pinch yourself to check you’re not in Paris things are so European here.
3. Di Bella Roasting Warehouse, Bowen Hills
Don’t just drink the coffee, dig deep into its roots with a crop-to-cup tour at Di Bella Coffee, Bowen Hills. After all, coffee tastes all the more sweeter when you know where it comes from. Di Bella ensures their beans are grown ethically and sustainably, sourcing them directly from growers around the world.
Even if you’re short on time, but longing for a black, their drive-thru service will have a coffee in your hands (with a side of banana bread, if you’re so inclined) in just 90 seconds, making it one of the fastest barista-made coffee experiences in Brisbane.
4. John Mills Himself, Brisbane City
Cafe by day, bar by night, John Mills Himself is the batman of the coffee world, with an alter ego that comes out after dark. I mean, where else can you pick up a cappuccino on your journey to the office and a cocktail on your way home?
Set within a foyer of exposed brick, the line of corporates that always winds out the door is evidence enough that the high-tech Hario V-60 filter is a good way to start your day.
More than just coffee specialists, they are hot chocolate aficionados and we recommend treating yo’self to one of their 70% dark, dairy milk, or white hot chocolates and, for the adventurous – one infused with chilli or ginger.
5. Fonzie Abbott, New Farm, Albion and Brisbane Airport
Sweet FA takes on a different meaning at this beacon for why Brisbane brews beans best. What started as a boutique espresso bistro in Hamilton is now part of the three-fold Fonzie Abbott spread that spans James Street, Albion, and Brisbane Airport. Quick expansion hasn’t stopped these coffee specialists from staying grounded though.
Their three signature blends – Highside, The Boxer and The Drifter – are still found on the menu and the food is simple and scrumptious – think brekkie wraps, ham and cheese croissants and chocolate brownies. Their imported beans will stamp your espresso passport with a range of international tastes – all roasted on site, while you lounge on the recycled furniture that fills their cafe’s interior.
6. QRoasters, Stafford
The clue is in the Q(ueensland) when it comes to this holy grail of coffee and speaks to the local charm that comes with your cuppa at this Northside brewhouse. Their brew is organic and fair trade, dishing up a range of international blends worthy of a very large blackboard menu.
Located in the backstreets of Stafford in Brisbane’s northern suburbs, what this warehouse lacks in street appeal, it makes up with serious coffee culture inside. You’ll find the likes of bagels, banana bread and protein balls on the menu if you’re looking for a sweet treat too.
You could put your return visit down to deja-brew, but a better guess is that you’ll be hooked on this roaster’s fruity flavours.
7. Day Made, Woolloongabba
Day Made’s squeaky-clean minimalist interiors are a stark departure from the trendy hipster/alternative/triple-J-playing/Birkenstock-loving cafes that dominate much of the Brisbane coffee scene. And in minimalism, we trust.
Tucked away in a corner of Wooloongabba, coffee is the hero of this cafe, which has a menu that happily plays a supporting role. Think: four cheese toast, scrambled eggs and ash-baked porridge and a glass cabinet of happiness including a jam doughnut that dominates their Instagram feed.
All staff happily give you the 411 on the flavours composing your cuppa – with each coffee coming with a one-pager of tasting notes that will set the 2000-odd taste buds on your tongue alight.
8. Neighbourhood Coffee Roasters, Rainworth and Albion
If you’re feeling despresso with a latte going on (boom-tish!), Neighbourhood Coffee Roasters, promise love at first sip. Just like a double shot – they pour out of two premises: Rainworth and Albion, ensuring the north-western suburbs of Brisbane both know their neighbours.
Their house brew, labelled the Store Keeper’s blend, makes this coffee shop worthy of more than just a quick coffee catch-up. In fact, you’ll find more than the typical latte or flat white on the menu here. Tour your taste buds with the likes of Japanese iced-coffee, iced dark chocolate and Ethiopian cold brews.
The menu similarly takes an international twist with the likes of Korean pancakes and Mexican tacos for breakfast and lunch. Either way, there are more tasty options than The Bachelor has single ladies to choose from at this cafe that needs your custom.