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Espresso Hits: 3 Quintessential Melbourne Cafes

Don’t be fooled by laid-back attitude, beards and buns; coffee in Melbourne is a forensic art that commands utmost respect. The city is stacked with coffee shops that will put your Starbucks iced frappe to shame – our tightly packed Melbourne guide contains a whopping 13 alone. You can check out the full list here, meanwhile, seasoned bean hunter Eleani Purcell distlls just 3 espresso hits for that quintessential Melbourne cafe experience.

Dukes Coffee Roasters, CBD

In a city where good baristas can earn more than most bankers, getting your midday latte at Starbucks screams Tina Tourist. Head instead to this wood-wrapped wonder that’s a firm fave for its carefully sourced, locally-roasted beans and smooth espresso blends – served without the sneer and condescension oft found at CBD coffeehouses.

Ross House, 247 Flinders Lane,

East Elevation, Brunswick East

Grab your hemp-clad kiddies and join the beard and bicycle brigade at this converted warehouse of all things ticking the hip box – bare bricks, industrial lighting, creeping greenery and veggie/vegan options galore. Many of the featured menu ingredients are also plucked directly from EE’s nearby alley garden… so fresh and SO Brunswick. Pick up some of the Monsieur Truffe bars before you leave, they’re all organic and Fai Trade. The Honeycomb is a standout.

351 Lygon Street, Brunswick East, 


There’s nary a white subway tile in sight at this city coff-stop stalwart working a Mid Century gentlemen’s club look with suspended book shelves and leather banquettes. Suits n’ students trade papers in the morning, while the lunch set crowd into the upstairs Canteen for daily-changing Italian bites. Take a window perch for perf CBD people-watching.

253 Flinders Lane,

Last updated: March 2021

Pour us another one, Sheila!

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