Category Archives: cafes

Garage Espresso – 126A Chapel Street St Kilda.

Funky modern fit out – funky light fittings – yes we know the formula well. Good looking menu – with a few interesting variations on a theme. The menu on their website is a little out of date – prices have risen for most items. Coffee was OK. First flat white was a little hard and bitter – second was less bitter – but  still a little unconvincing.  Do I have to have three coffees to get ONE great one! ? Why should there be variation between coffees has got me confused. They should all be ‘in the zone’ and consistent. My Bircher muesli was excellent.  Food is a six star rating, coffee takes the overall rating down to five stars. Maybe worth a revisit.

Industry Beans Cafe Fitzroy

Quaint retro-new  warehouse tucked away in back street of Fitzroy. Service and quality of food is excellent. Menu range is diverse and there would be something for everyone. All is great until we get to the coffee. In a city with such a huge choice in coffee – Industry Beans is just not up to the mark. The flavours  are a little dilute, the palate is a little short on the finish, I don’t get the intensity and precise coffee flavours that we see with the competition. Dont get me wrong – the coffee is very very good – but I expected more. So for food and service I give 6/6 stars, coffee drags this down to 5/6 stars. Shame.

Fifteen Pounds – 21-23 Railway Place Fairfield

‘Fifteen pounds’  is a new comer in Fairfield – and raises the bar to  new heights. Coffee is exemplary quality from ‘Campos’ and is well made – rich and thick texture. The Baristas are truly on the ball here. Always lots of customers in the take-away coffee queue. The bread comes from ‘Crumbs Organic Bakehouse’ in Ascot Vale.

The menu is really interesting – all ingredients are of top quality – the flavours are complex and sophisticated.  We had the ‘baked  eggs with the cassareccio salami, roast peppers, truffle oil, gruyere cheese and vine ripened tomatoes’ and the ‘two poached eggs with gluten free toast, smoked salmon,braised fennel  infused with chilli, topped with dill hollandaise and crispy radish’.  What a delight – fresh complex flavours.

Atmosphere is a retro-grunge – with old timber pallets being recycled into furniture. There is a court yard out the back.

Finally an oasis in Fairfield has arrived !! Go!!
Fifteen Pounds gets its name from the ‘recommended tamper’ pressure when dosing a coffee basket.

Gypsy Hideout – Northcote

No signs anywhere at 68 High St Northcote – Westgarth end. Coffee is OK but a little simple and weak, but a very interesting and bold menu. We were here on a hot day – no fans inside – lights were all on – why? There is a fan in the backyard terrace area? Why?
Food is interesting though service is hit and miss. There appear to be a lot of people in the kitchen – too many for the amount of food that has to be prepared. Too many cooks …….! Worth a visit – but go on a cool day!  Coffee 3 stars, food 4 stars, service 2 stars. Average of 3 stars. Will revisit!


Has potential to be a Five Star Cafe (or even 6) but inconsistency of service, coffee quality and overall ‘feel’ needs to be improved!

On a recent visit ( January 6th 2012) we can report that the coffee was excellent. Dishes were of very good quality and portion size was good and service was quick. Only comment is that there is a certain ‘sameness’ across the entire menu. Everyone is now doing, poached eggs, chorizo, fetta, harissa etc.  You would think that for a ‘Spanish’ inspired cafe you could find something a little more interesting and authentic.  So for now up to a 4 star rating – which is damn good.  Still no fans or aircon inside – so on a hot day maybe this is not a good choice for those trying to keep out of the heat!

two:bob – Cafe Clifton Hill

two:bob is at 270 Queens Parade Clifton Hill Melbourne, in the old bank building. The fit out is clean and spacious. Coffee is by ‘Coffee Supreme’ in Abbotsford – and is quite excellent. Service was great and the menu looked really interesting. We had the Bircher Muesli, Corn and Zucchini fritters, Coconut, oat and raspberry loaf, and Poached eggs with smoked salmon. Worth a try and five star rating easy! Notice the name is all lower case and don’t forget the colon!

Upon a recent visit we can safely confirm that all is going well. French Toast was excellent and coffee was superb. Upgrade to Six star rating – website coming soon at www.twobob.net.au .

Colliban Foodstore – Trentham

Located at 18 Market Street in Trentham Victoria. This doubles as a Cafe, Bar, Restaurant and Fine Wine Merchant. The overall feel of the place is very relaxed and inviting. Warm and cosy – spanning across some split levels. The winelist is terrific with a good range of wines by the glass. German, Italian, French, New Zealand wines etc. all feature on a very good winelist – which is very keenly priced. The Fine Wine shop has a great range of wines to take home. Our breakfast visit was a good one and we will return for a more serious adventure soon. The lunch and dinner menus looked very interesting. Worth a visit! www.collibanfoodstore.com