city guide

A Coffee Drinker’s Guide To Canberra, Australia

By aeropress, australia, Barrio Collective Coffee Bar, Bodalla Dairy, Cafes, Canberra, city guide, coffee lab, Espresso Room, Greenhouse Coffee and Food Co., Guides, Harvest, Industry Beans, Oceania, Ona Coffee, Places, Sasa Sestic, Staff Picks, the cupping room, The Pines Dairy, Tilba Dairy

It’s easy to arrive in Canberra, the capital city of Australia, and get caught up admiring all of the grand government buildings that neatly line the streets of the well-planned city—from Parliament House on top of the hill, to the Australian War Memorial and the National Gallery of Australia. The city is also home to about 80 embassies and high commissions.

Nicknamed the bush capital, Canberra is home to a population of about 390,000 people and is also well-known for having lots of roundabouts (at last count it was about 406). For a long time it was never really considered a destination—mainly because there wasn’t much going on. The only time people visited was during school excursions or when visitors were in town, but even then that was a drag.

However this has all changed and frankly, part of that shift in attitude towards the city can be attributed to the local coffee scene. It all started when one of the city’s very own baristas, Sasa Sestic, was crowned the winner of the World Barista Championship title in Seattle back in 2015. Since then, he’s been training other baristas in the city, many of who have followed in his footsteps and have entered and won similar competitions like the master barista himself.

The burgeoning coffee scene has partially helped put Canberra on the map as a cool place to visit. These cafes have themselves become travel destinations for visitors in search of quality caffeine or a place to take refuge after all that exploring (or going through roundabouts).


canberra australia coffee guide

Photo courtesy of ONA Coffee.

The Cupping Room

If you had to pick and choose a handful of cafes that were responsible for starting the coffee trend in Canberra then there’s no denying that The Cupping Room is one of them.

The Cupping Room is owned by Canberra’s largest speciality coffee roaster, ONA Coffee, the company that was founded by award-winning Sasa Sestic and is also home to other champion baristas including Matthew Lewin, 2019 Barista Champion of Australia. Given how many awards ONA Coffee has, no matter the barista you’re almost guaranteed a good brew.

Part cafe and part educational hub, The Cupping Room is the go-to to learn a thing or two about coffee, beans, taste, and flavor with their education cupping sessions. Their seasonal menu features all-day breakfast—it could be a bacon and egg roll or something heartier like fritters or beetroot cured salmon with herbs and greens such as pickled fennel, asparagus, and cucumber.

The Cupping Room is located at 1/1-13 University Avenue, Canberra. Visit their official website and follow them on Facebook and Instagram.


canberra australia coffee guide

Photo courtesy of Barrio Collective.

Barrio Collective Coffee Bar

Opened in 2015, Barrio Collective Coffee Bar may be tiny in size but it packs a punch in the local coffee scene. Located in the hip neighborhood of Braddon, the coffee menu has been tailored to reflect the cafe’s traditional and contemporary brew methods. Their motto is to keep things simple and everything from their decor to menu delivers on that.

The community-like vibe of the space is best enjoyed with their range of small-batch-roasted coffees. In addition to nut milks, milk suppliers have been thoughtfully sourced from nearby regions: Tilba Dairy, Bodalla Dairy, and The Pines Dairy in Kiama.

The food at Barrio ranges from tasty coffee-pairables such as stroopwafels to hearty and warm grilled cheese sandwiches.

Barrio Collective Coffee is located at 59/30 Lonsdale St, Braddon ACT 2612. Visit their official website and follow them on Facebook and Instagram.


canberra australia coffee guide

Photo courtesy of Kira Zhouyuan.

Greenhouse Coffee and Food Co.

Who knew you could find good coffee in a mall? In Canberra you can. On the top level of Canberra Centre is Greenhouse Coffee and Food Co. This gem is a welcome reprieve for anyone looking for more than just any average food court offering.

The venture was started by two of Canberra’s coffee veterans, Sasa Sestic from ONA Coffee and Michael Rose from Espresso Room, before it was recently sold to new owners.

Coffee is all locally sourced from ONA. With multiple blends available, drinks include filter coffees, single origins, and cold brews. Just as much as the coffee variety changes, the food menu also rotates each season. Dishes in the past have included pork benedict with braised pork hock, Béarnaise sauce, and pickled beetroot, and banana fritters with cardamom anglaise, vanilla malt crumble, and pineapple sorbet.

The space, as the name suggests, has been designed to replicate a greenhouse with a mix of Hampton styling. Arched French windows overlook the city and greenery hangs from the ceiling, making it an ideal refuge if you’re seeking to escape the craziness of the shopping mall. There’s also a balcony that’s suitable for the warmer months.

Greenhouse Coffee and Food Co is located at . Follow them on Facebook and Instagram.


canberra australia coffee guide

Photo courtesy of Coffee Lab.

Coffee Lab

As the name hints, Coffee Lab is part coffee roaster and part science lab. There’s no better way to understand the coffee-making process and the science that goes behind it by watching the baristas, who pride themselves on experimental brews, trial, and test all the different coffee beans at the concrete bar. They’re happy to talk you through the process too—just ask.

Their experiments always produce a rotation of at least two milk-based blends, a single-origin espresso, and filter options, often poured with a bit of theatre.

Just like the coffee, the food served at Coffee Lab is ever-changing. Depending on the season it can vary from tiramisu pancakes to smashed eggs with chorizo to red velvet pancakes to shrimp patty burger.

It’s corner location decked out with hanging greenery suspended from wooden crates and a wall of coffee bags make it a popular go-to spot for public servants, who are often lining up out the door for their morning caffeine hit. To avoid the lengthy lines there are plenty of cosy spots to choose from. The best seats in the house are either on the banquette or by the large front windows where it’s a chance to watch passers-by.

Coffee Lab is located at 26 Narellan Place, Canberra. Follow them on Facebook and Instagram.


canberra australia coffee guide

Photo courtesy of Harvest Coffee.


When your coffee options include pour-over, syphon, cold drip, or AeroPress, you know you’re at a spot where coffee is taken seriously. Harvest is all about serving a cup—or three—of some of the city’s best coffee from its wooden bar where all the dedicated work of testing new brewing methods happens. The moody venue uses a blend of beans from countries including Brazil, Colombia, Guatemala, Sumatra, and Honduras, sourcing it from other Australian roasters including Melbourne-based Industry Beans and fellow Canberreans, Barrio Collective.

While there, it’s hard to resist the sweet offerings that are always on display at the counter. It varies from muffins to banana bread, in-house baked chocolate chip cookies, and Portuguese tarts—all of which are ideal accompaniments to a fresh brew.

The ample low-stool seating and vibrant service that’s offered at Harvest has made it a favorable hangout for crowds to sip away over a few cups in the corner.

Harvest is located at 40 Marcus Clarke Street, Canberra. Visit their official website and follow them on Facebook.

Aimee Chanthadavong is a freelance journalist based in Sydney. Read more Aimee Chanthadavong for Sprudge.

The post A Coffee Drinker’s Guide To Canberra, Australia appeared first on Sprudge.

Source: Coffee News

The Sprudge Coffee Guide To Washington, DC

By A Baked Joint, Brandywine Coffee Roasters, Cafes, chemex, city guide, coava coffee roasters, Colony Club, counter culture, dc, district of columbia, Featured, Fox Loves Taco, Guides, Heart Coffee Roasters, Kalita Wave, Kintsugi Cafe, madcap coffee, Passenger Coffee, peregrine espresso, red rooster coffee, Sey Coffee, slayer, Slipstream, Small Planes Coffee, the coffee bar, The Wydown Coffee Bar, Tryst, washington, Washington DC

Washington, DC is a complicated city, the capital of a complicated country. But despite what lore may tell you—it’s not all politicians, diplomats, and monuments here. Indeed, it’s a thriving city with no shortage of diverse food, and more recently, coffee options. Whatever your pleasure, DC’s coffee scene has grown into a landscape where anyone of any leaning can find the right drink in the right place. Here are some of the options.

washington dc coffee guide


A comfortably hip coffee and cocktail bar, Slipsteam is the perfect place to grab a light meal, a pick-me-up, or a nightcap. Dimly lit and sleek in design, the busy pace of this cafe is betrayed by its intimate feeling. The folks at Slipstream aim to make specialty coffee accessible to everyone. The coffee menu is clear and concise, divided into four distinct categories: Comfort, Bright, Fruit, and Floral. Madcap Coffee provides the house beans and additional guest roasters appear on the shelves frequently. Expect the clientele to be hunched over laptops during the first half of the day and having lively conversations in the evenings.

Slipstream has multiple locations throughout Washington, DC. Visit their official website and follow them on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


washington dc coffee guide

Colony Club

Capitalizing on cool, the Colony Club is an inviting coffee and cocktail bar with room to stretch out. The space itself is long and thin but boasts a second floor as well as ample outdoor seating. Most of the tables are communal which allows a more social experience than many modern coffeehouses. Sey Coffee fuels the batch brew and Heart Coffee Roasters the espresso. Pour-overs are available via Kalita Wave, or get a Chemex to share. If you’re a ping pong enthusiast, you’ll be happy to find a table upstairs for your enjoyment. Vibrant, energetic, and youthful, those lucky enough to live near the Colony Club have a stellar way to start and end their day.

Colony Club is located at 3118 Georgia Ave NW, Washington, DC. Visit their official website and follow them on Facebook and Instagram.


washington dc coffee guide

Fox Loves Taco

Earning points for having the best combination of things ever, Fox Loves Taco is a cafe with solid coffee and delectable tacos on the menu (featured here as part of Sprudge’s Build-Outs of Summer). Located by the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception, this cafe offers its own divine experience.

washington dc coffee guide

The coffee program features Coava Coffee Roasters and Brandywine Coffee Roasters. The space is bright and cozy, and as makes perfect sense for an espresso bar/taqueria—is also shared with a bike shop. Sipping on an espresso while enjoying a smoked tofu taco will make you feel as warm and fuzzy as the shop’s namesake.

Fox Loves Taco is located at 716 Monroe St NE in Washington, DC. Check out their official website and find them on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.


washington dc coffee guide

Peregrine Espresso

Considered by many to be the area standard, Peregrine Espresso carries the torch of Washington, DC coffee culture in a steady hand. The company was born from a cafe love story and since 2008 the married owners have grown the business to three cafes and a sister roasting company, Small Planes Coffee, whose coffee is served in many of the surrounding coffeehouses. If you need a good cup of coffee and Peregrine Espresso is nearby, know that you are in good hands at any Peregrine location.

Peregrine Espresso has multiple locations around Washington, DC. Visit their official website and follow them on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


washington dc coffee guide

The Coffee Bar

As the coffee industry grows and changes, many are trying to shed the image of the surly barista. It sounds like a small thing, but bad customer service can make even the best of coffees taste sour, which is why The Coffee Bar’s friendly staff struck me. They greeted patrons with a smile and were engaged throughout each interaction. Their Shaw area cafe is eclectic and bright, full of reclaimed artifacts and whimsical decorations. A multi-roaster cafe that features up to four roasters at a time, those who frequent The Coffee Bar are unlikely to get bored.

The Coffee Bar has multiple locations around Washington, DC. Visit their official website and follow them on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


washington dc coffee guide

A Baked Joint

High-energy A Baked Joint is a serious bakery with a serious coffee program. A spinoff of popular DC cupcake-and-coffee spot Baked & Wired, A Baked Joint is an experience all its own. The focus on food (there’s a full bread menu, along with breakfast, lunch, and pizza) is well met by a slate of quality coffee drinks, which includes a selection of boozy buzzes as well. The space is big, with tables and standing counters near the front and a comfy lounge area toward the back. It’s hard to pigeonhole the vibe of A Baked Joint, but you’ll find this place bouncing at all hours.

A Baked Joint is located at 440 K St NW, Washington, DC. Visit their official website and follow them on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


washington dc coffee guide

Kintsugi Cafe

If you’re looking for a beautiful experience for both your eyes and your palate, this hotel cafe should be your next stop. Named after the art of repairing broken pottery with gold-infused lacquer, Kintsugi pays homage to creation through destruction. The design is sleek, with accents of black, gold, and polished wood—echoed in the Slayer espresso machine on the counter. Coffee is provided by Red Rooster Coffee of nearby Virginia. Treating yourself to an espresso here will make you feel both elegant and hip.

Kintsugi Cafe is located at 1201 K St NW 1st Floor, Washington, DC. Visit their official website and follow them on Facebook and Instagram.


washington dc coffee guide


Known as DC’s living room, this 20-year-old institution has seen many a dissertation written, cured numerous hangovers, and been a home away from home to countless people. This huge, packed cafe is loaded with comfy couches and easy chairs, numerous laptops, animated conversations, and Counter Culture Coffee. Coffeehouses like this awaken long-forgotten desires to be a member of the Friends crew at Central Perk—but in DC, and real life. Equal parts cafe, restaurant, and bar, Tryst has all your needs covered.

Tryst is located at 2459 18th St NW, Washington, DC. Visit their official website and follow them on Facebook and Instagram.


washington dc coffee guide

The Wydown Coffee Bar

Beautifully designed, hospitality-driven, and perpetually bustling, The Wydown Coffee Bar on 14th Street seems to be everyone’s pet favorite coffee shop. From the line out to the sidewalk, you might assume that a small coffee counter hides behind its doors, but inside you’ll find multiple baristas manning pour-over stations, dual espresso machines, and an appetizing spread of pastries. This multi-roaster cafe features Passenger Coffee Roasters and is quick and efficient. If you are lucky enough to find a seat, the people-watching is superb.

The Wydown Coffee Bar has multiple locations around Washington, DC. Visit their official website and follow them on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Eric Tessier is a freelance journalist based in Providence, RI. Read more Eric Tessier on Sprudge.

The post The Sprudge Coffee Guide To Washington, DC appeared first on Sprudge.

Source: Coffee News

A Coffee Guide To Ottawa, Ontario

By 49th parallel, Black Squirrel Books, Bluebarn, Bread By Us, Bridgehead Roastery, Buchipop, Cafes, Canada, city guide, Cloudforest, Cut Coffee, Cyclelogik, Detour Coffee, Drift Magazine, Fellow, Ground Control Cyclops, Guides, kalita, kinto, Little Victories, LOAM Clay Studio, North America, ontario, Ottawa, Pilot Coffee, probat, Quitters, Staff Picks, SuzyQ, The Ministry of Coffee and Social Affairs, The Record Centre, Voga Coffee

Ottawa, Ontario—Canada’s capital, caught between Montreal and Toronto on too many bands’ Canadian tour legs. At first blush, when thinking of its coffee culture, Ottawa might conjure something of a blank slate—but that just might be all the snow.

Truthfully, Ottawa’s coffee scene has exploded as of late. Having just hosted its inaugural Ottawa Coffee Fest in the 4,900-square-foot, historic Horticulture Building at Lansdowne Park, Ottawa stands poised to counter an ill-deserved reputation as a sleepy government town with a Starbucks at every corner.

Whether as a waypoint or a destination on your next trip up north, Ottawa has in recent years become a distinctive stop for coffee drinkers, with a robust and lively scene and a litany of well-differentiated takes on the local shop.

ottawa ontario canada coffee guide

Bridgehead Roastery

Any exploration of Ottawa’s third wave scene starts here—both literally and figuratively. Founded in 2000 and having since grown to a sizable chain (that has thus far resisted expansion beyond city limits), Bridgehead holds down the capital with a roastery location at the crossroads of Little Italy and Chinatown, in an architecturally impressive warehouse.

A Probat roaster proudly hums along just behind the seating area; beside it, a German stone mill grinds away for fresh loaves of their in-house bread. The cupping lab and other open offices innocuously line the back of the establishment.

On-demand Kalita pour-overs and housemade kombucha feature on the menu, while expansive murals highlight Bridgehead’s fair trade relationships dating back to the beginning when the company was at one point run by Oxfam.

Most anyone familiar with Ottawa’s coffee scene will readily acknowledge Bridgehead’s pioneering influence. Although Ottawa is now home to a couple dozen Bridgehead shops, partnerships such as with Ottawa’s LOAM Clay Studio for a hand-thrown ceramic mug illustrate an ongoing attention to detail.

Bridgehead Roastery is located at 130 Anderson St, Centretown. Visit their official website and follow them on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


The Ministry of Coffee and Social Affairs (Wellington)

Just 10 or so years ago, Hintonburg was perhaps better known as a rather run-down city centre. These days, the creative, once-and-future animation alley has drawn out a small business boom, with the requisite caffeine to fuel it all.

Steps away from The Record Centre, you’ll find the Ministry of Coffee home to an industrial-chic atmosphere, with exposed ceilings, bare drop-down lighting fixtures, and an extra-large wooden centre island matched by floor-to-ceiling, wall-to-wall blackboard menus. A rotation of huge pop art murals adorn the opposite side, with Bono and the Red Hot Chili Peppers looking over the daily bustle.

Ministry’s multi-roaster rotation might feature Toronto’s Cut Coffee or Dundas, Ontario’s Detour one week, or Vancouver’s 49th Parallel the next; roasters as far as Europe, Australia, and Japan have also been featured, giving additional reason for regulars to return and establishing MoC as a locus for coffee drinkers looking to happen upon something new.

An extensive whiskey and spirits menu (with tasting nights), local kombucha by Buchipop, and a variety of sandwiches using slices by neighboring bakery Bread By Us round out the experience.

The Ministry of Coffee and Social Affairs is located at 1013 Wellington St West, Hintonburg, Ottawa. Visit their official website and follow them on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

ottawa ontario canada coffee guide

Black Squirrel Books

Black Squirrel Books hews closer to the coffeehouse as an intellectual hub than the average establishment. Serving coffee by local roasters Bluebarn and Cloudforest (the latter of which specializes in coffees from Ecuador), Black Squirrel also recently launched a new cocktail menu and charcuterie board. Acting as a hub for the city’s small but vibrant experimental and new music scene, it’s not unusual to see mainstay local improvisors like Linsey Wellman filling the space with curious sounds, or to find the walls reverberating with drone music well into the night.

Possibly more impressive than the coffees and local microbrews up front is the book collection located towards the back. A massive library sprawls right down to the basement, all but guaranteeing a chance encounter with a new conversation piece to pair with your cappuccino.

Black Squirrel Books wears its literary identity on its sleeve: various decorative typewriters casually mingle amongst its regulars, many of whom are students from nearby Carleton University. Indigenous art takes a showplace along a sidewall. It’s a meeting place that foregrounds different perspectives—a coffeehouse ingrained with the value of the exchange of ideas.

Black Squirrel Books is located at 1073 Bank St, The Glebe, Ottawa. Visit their official website and follow them on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


Little Victories

This cozy shop, nestled in the Glebe, will likely be the only place in Ottawa you’ll find the foamy “Australian cappuccino,” the Magic (double shot flat white), and the Piccolo—in essence, a Lilliputian latte—front and centre on the menu.

Third Wave acolytes will feel right at home here: A copy of Drift magazine is casually left among cascading floating shelves lined with products by coffee hardware darlings Kinto and Fellow. In keeping with this, co-founder Jeremie Thompson takes pride in the shop’s newly-acquired Ground Control Cyclops from Voga Coffee, further evidence of Little Victories’ positioning as a “coffee first” cafe.

Rather than possibly overextending themselves, partnerships are a cornerstone of this small business: their first shop of the current two was and remains an in-store pop-up in the corner of the Cyclelogik bike shop in Hintonburg—a sensible pairing.

Similarly, in the Glebe, the local and highly-lauded doughnut wizards at SuzyQ have set up shop inside Little Victories. Straight-from-the-oven circles of goodness formed from an old Finnish recipe temptingly line the counter display.

Little Victories is located at 801 Bank St, The Glebe, Ottawa. Visit their official website and follow them on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


ottawa ontario canada coffee guide


Finally, out of left field—literally and figuratively—comes Quitters, on the far east end of the city. Founded in 2014 by local musician Kathleen Edwards, who had at the time quit the music industry (and, incidentally, has recently signed a new record deal), here you’ll find Toronto’s Pilot Coffee Roasters on bar, and, incidentally, Little Victories’ roasts as well.

Irreverent, deadpan humor is an integral part of the Quitters experience, with the requisite jokes adorning the sandwich board. With a bustling local crowd that lasts well into the evening on Saturday’s regular trivia night (replete with wine), Quitters is a quintessential slice of backyard Canadiana. It’s a (not so) sober reminder that no matter how sophisticated Ottawa’s coffee scene may yet become, the people hold the centre of it all.

Quitters is located at 1523 Stittsville Main St, Ottawa. Visit their official website and follow them on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Curtis Perry is a journalist based in Ottawa, Canada. This is Curtis Perry’s first feature for Sprudge.

Top image via Aqnus/Adobe Stock.

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Source: Coffee News