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Best of Canberra – Coffee

By Bec Cuzzillo 19 May 2015 59

Coffee1

Someone once told me that Canberra has more cafes per capita than any other city in the world. I don’t know how true that is, but it is no lie that we are a city of coffee drinkers.

Canberra’s specialty coffee scene is booming, there are a few places now that roast their own coffee and a lot of good cafes that serve up a quality brew. Canberra is even home to the 2015 World Barista Champion and, despite the already vast number of great cafes, it seems that we haven’t yet reached our collective caffeine saturation point – has anyone else noticed that there is a new place opening up almost every week?

This week I am putting the word out there to find Canberra’s best coffee. Whether you like a nice strong espresso or prefer a fancy filter, I want to know who serves up your favourite coffee? 

To vote, let me know who makes Canberra’s best coffee in the comments below. I’ll try the two most popular places and let you know the verdict in next Monday’s Taste Off article. 


What’s Your opinion?


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Best of Canberra – Coffee
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TorrensTom 7:03 pm 30 May 15

I tried ONA in Manuka yesterday after reading many favourable comments about it here – VERY disappointing. I ordered a small Cappuccino; it was $3.50, which is a fair price, but came in the SMALLEST CUP I’ve ever seen! The coffee wasn’t even particularly good – overly milky and not much flavour. I expected better and won’t be going back 🙁

Ezy 10:04 am 30 May 15

Rollersk8r said :

Masquara said :

LSR make OK coffee but their “attitude” approach is weird. In the good cafes in San Francisco, Seattle, Vancouver, Melbourne, Brisbane – all the baristas are chill and friendly. LSR’s behind-the-counter hauteur is mystifying. Wrecks their coffee – along with the too-loud music at breakfast time.

Indeed.

We go through 1kg of beans a month at home @ $40-something a time. Have been a loyal customer of LSR for over a year. But last time I waited 15 minutes in line *just to buy beans* and got a shrug at the counter: “Yeah, well, we’re out of pretty much everything. Can’t sell you more than 250g”.

Fine then. Business permanently taken elsewhere.

You are in luck – soon to open Barrio in the Ori building in Braddon also sells coffee online and offers free delivery as well. I have some beans on the way for home filter http://www.barriocc.com

Hit up Sam and have a chat about a subscription service. Can I also suggest you break down your 1kg into 500g? Fresh is always best 🙂

rosscoact 6:56 pm 29 May 15

Rollersk8r said :

Masquara said :

LSR make OK coffee but their “attitude” approach is weird. In the good cafes in San Francisco, Seattle, Vancouver, Melbourne, Brisbane – all the baristas are chill and friendly. LSR’s behind-the-counter hauteur is mystifying. Wrecks their coffee – along with the too-loud music at breakfast time.

Indeed.

We go through 1kg of beans a month at home @ $40-something a time. Have been a loyal customer of LSR for over a year. But last time I waited 15 minutes in line *just to buy beans* and got a shrug at the counter: “Yeah, well, we’re out of pretty much everything. Can’t sell you more than 250g”.

Fine then. Business permanently taken elsewhere.

Yep. That’s a similar story except we go through a kilo a week. It was a no thanks, we don’t want your business.

Rollersk8r 4:39 pm 29 May 15

Masquara said :

LSR make OK coffee but their “attitude” approach is weird. In the good cafes in San Francisco, Seattle, Vancouver, Melbourne, Brisbane – all the baristas are chill and friendly. LSR’s behind-the-counter hauteur is mystifying. Wrecks their coffee – along with the too-loud music at breakfast time.

Indeed.

We go through 1kg of beans a month at home @ $40-something a time. Have been a loyal customer of LSR for over a year. But last time I waited 15 minutes in line *just to buy beans* and got a shrug at the counter: “Yeah, well, we’re out of pretty much everything. Can’t sell you more than 250g”.

Fine then. Business permanently taken elsewhere.

dungfungus 12:29 pm 29 May 15

Pencil said :

Two Hands in Fyshwick make a good strong flat white. I like the vibe in there as well

……and the lack of MAMILs.

Masquara 7:32 pm 28 May 15

LSR make OK coffee but their “attitude” approach is weird. In the good cafes in San Francisco, Seattle, Vancouver, Melbourne, Brisbane – all the baristas are chill and friendly. LSR’s behind-the-counter hauteur is mystifying. Wrecks their coffee – along with the too-loud music at breakfast time.

Pencil 4:49 pm 28 May 15

Two Hands in Fyshwick make a good strong flat white. I like the vibe in there as well

bryansworld 3:58 pm 22 May 15

rubaiyat said :

bryansworld said :

Same here. I will walk past them and into one that serves coffee in reusable cups.

Cool, I don’t feel so alone with my attitude now!

Whatever happened to the customer is always right?

I loath those plastic throw away cups with the baby spout, and always insist on a regular porcelain cup, but not infrequently they ignore your request.

Particularly the coffee chains. They know what we “need”.

We “need” to trash our planet or we will be unable to maintain our lifestyle!

They “need” to trash the planet by exploiting externalities to keep making profit, because its free money for them. It’s only dangerous to say in Australia because we seem to have lost touch with reality, but we need a price on carbon.

rubaiyat 1:50 pm 22 May 15

bryansworld said :

Same here. I will walk past them and into one that serves coffee in reusable cups.

Cool, I don’t feel so alone with my attitude now!

Whatever happened to the customer is always right?

I loath those plastic throw away cups with the baby spout, and always insist on a regular porcelain cup, but not infrequently they ignore your request.

Particularly the coffee chains. They know what we “need”.

We “need” to trash our planet or we will be unable to maintain our lifestyle!

bryansworld 10:55 am 22 May 15

Maya123 said :

bryansworld said :

Ezy said :

bryansworld said :

On a related issue, there are a lot of take away coffees drunk on this planet. I understand that the vast majority of takeaway paper cups have a plastic lining, which means they cannot be recycled at our current recycling facilities in Australia. Where in Canberra uses cups that are recyclable here?

Get yourself one of these: http://www.keepcup.com.au

Got one, and use it when I can. Spread the word! But, still amazed at the number of non-recyclable cups that we as a collective must churn through. Particularly saddened by the cafes that have decided that completely disposable is the way to go. I try to avoid these ones. Must be financially better for a business to not have to wash up?

“Particularly saddened by the cafes that have decided that completely disposable is the way to go. I try to avoid these ones.”

Same here. I will walk past them and into one that serves coffee in reusable cups.

Cool, I don’t feel so alone with my attitude now!

CJ 7:15 am 22 May 15

My only complaint with Lonsdale Street Roasters over many visits in past years was that the coffee was almost always lukewarm by the time it arrived at our table. Taste-wise it was fine, with good body and balance, and the selection of beans to take home was excellent. I second a previous poster re the Johnny Cash blend.

MattLowe 11:53 pm 21 May 15

2 B4 10

Maya123 10:04 pm 21 May 15

bryansworld said :

Ezy said :

bryansworld said :

On a related issue, there are a lot of take away coffees drunk on this planet. I understand that the vast majority of takeaway paper cups have a plastic lining, which means they cannot be recycled at our current recycling facilities in Australia. Where in Canberra uses cups that are recyclable here?

Get yourself one of these: http://www.keepcup.com.au

Got one, and use it when I can. Spread the word! But, still amazed at the number of non-recyclable cups that we as a collective must churn through. Particularly saddened by the cafes that have decided that completely disposable is the way to go. I try to avoid these ones. Must be financially better for a business to not have to wash up?

“Particularly saddened by the cafes that have decided that completely disposable is the way to go. I try to avoid these ones.”

Same here. I will walk past them and into one that serves coffee in reusable cups.

MotherHen 7:00 pm 21 May 15

Niugini Arabica at Duffy does a nice latte and is a lovely spot to sit on a sunny day. They roast their own beans (from the PNG highlands) and also sell coffee beans so you can also enjoy at home.

SparksAndSawdust 6:15 pm 21 May 15

Sly Fox Coffee on the bike path near MacArthur Avenue – the only coffee I don’t have to add sugar 🙂

Vindalu 4:46 pm 21 May 15

Hi Guys – loved reading everyone’s take on good coffee. I travel around the ACT all day long and usually do 3 coffees a day; yes, and I hate to admit it – they’re double shots. Coffee Guru does it for me, consistently good with slight variations in excellence among the various outlets. I’d give first prize to their Weston franchise. Coffee is more than a matter of personal taste; to get the max flavour with depth and minimal bitterness takes skill and attention to detail. I could wax lyrical about coffee for pages having had several coffee shops and been a trainer in the hosp industry throughout the coffee boom but I’ll end on this note. There are better coffees than coffee guru but they are few, for a consistent happy hit I love em!

Ezy 3:48 pm 21 May 15

garglebutt said :

I struggle to find a decent cup around Woden town centre. Urban Bean (Ona beans) is okay but goes well down hill during mid morning peak. Gizmo’s (Cosmorex) at IP Australia is okay most of the time. Nothing like the Cupping Room or 10 to 2 though ????.

Espresso Room in Westfield are not a bad option around that area. They should be close to the same standard as Cupping Room because they are under the Ona/Project Origin umbrella. Other options within a 15 minute walk are Lava in Phillip or Stand By Me in Lyons.

garglebutt 3:28 pm 21 May 15

I struggle to find a decent cup around Woden town centre. Urban Bean (Ona beans) is okay but goes well down hill during mid morning peak. Gizmo’s (Cosmorex) at IP Australia is okay most of the time. Nothing like the Cupping Room or 10 to 2 though ????.

garglebutt 3:19 pm 21 May 15

Holden Caulfield said :

But I can observe and comment on coffee culture, which, it has to be said, like wine culture, or cycling culture, is often full of people who take the subject much too seriously.

I think the focus and attention that “a good coffee” receives is mildly amusing at best and a complete embarrassment at worst.

The fact that the coffee shops using stale old Vittoria beans and the like still have lots of customers shows that there is plenty of breadth in the market for all levels of taste.

Each to their own of course but many people are interested in finding a better product at an acceptable price which is what this discussion is about. I walk past half a dozen coffee shops every day to find a better product because I’d rather drink water than a mediocre cup of coffee.

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