Tag Archives: Long Black Coffee

Ltd espresso bar is exactly that

Long Black from LTD Espresso Bar
Single Origin Long Black from LTD Espresso Bar

Most cafes have a strong milk coffee bias. Maybe it’s because they can sell overly sweet flavouring; maybe it’s because it disguises poor beans and worse baristas. Who knows? Entire franchises have been built on the idea of selling milky sugary beverages that at some point might have involved coffee. Cafes that do good black coffee are far less common. Cafes that specialise in black coffee are even rarer.

Ltd espresso bar actually does seem to specialise in high quality black coffee. Located on Brunswick Street near Pie Face and Reverends Fine Coffee, the cafe is very much an espresso bar. There is no food menu and seating does not go far past a few stools. In fact you can say a lot aboutĀ Ltd espresso bar by listing the things it does not do or have. There is no decaf, no soy milk, and Luke does not charge the same for a long black as he does for a flat white.

Fortunately I visited this cafe for the first time early in the morning, before they got busy, so I got to talk to Luke and found out a little more about the cafe. He runs three grinders, each with a different blend or single origin, with one for black coffee, another for milk and the third for filter. My long black was shortly followed by two more.

One of the things that Luke seems keen to accomplish is to get more people to try black coffee. Unsurprisingly there is a strong preference for milk coffees like a flat white or cappuccino over espresso, long black or americano (with even more people confused as to why there are two names for what is essentially a shot of coffee with some hot water added).

The coffee itself is really very good. Luke explained that he generally aims to time it so he is serving one lot of beans for about five to seven days, while it is at its peak. He alternates between different blends and single origins with each batch.

Ltd espresso bar is exactly what the name implies: an espresso bar. It is a place you go to buy good coffee and then leave, or buy good coffee, drink it reasonably quickly and then leave. And this works. Its emphasis on black coffee is, at least in my experience, fairly unique as well. This cafe is certainly worth going to if you care about coffee. If you are after a nice large breakfast however, you may be disappointed.



  • Does very good coffee
  • Rotating selection of single origin beans and blends
  • Very keen on black coffee
  • Takes quality seriously

Ltd espresso + brew bar

362 Brunswick st, Fortitude Valley

Reverends Fine Coffee in the Valley

Reverend's Fine Coffee
Reverends Fine Coffee

Fortitude Valley is not much of a destination for cafes currently. If there was one place that could claim that distinction, West End would be it, with honorable mentions going to Teneriffe and a few suburban outliers. The Brunswick Street Mall in Fortitude Valley is certainly a wasteland as far as good coffee goes. Recently though a few new places within easy walking distance of the centre of the Valley have opened up.

Only three weeks old, Reverends Fine Coffee is one of these. The cafe is practically a hole in the wall, with only a narrow street front. However Reverends Fine Coffee uses their space well with the counter at the front and a reasonably sized seating area tucked away in the back. Inside it feels roomier than their small street frontage would lead you to believe.

There are seats and tables
There are seats and tables

Like a growing number of cafes they do roast their own beans, and sometimes other cafes, such as Moray, even use them, at least according to their Facebook page. The coffee they do is good, and they offer single origins alongside their own blend. As a black coffee it is very drinkable, and makes it easy to consume multiple cups in quick succession.

Reverend's menu, food to come soon
Reverends menu, food to come soon

Reverends Fine Coffee is not serving food just yet, but getting a license to do so is one of their plans. The cafe is close to the Brunswick Street Mall and is good for early weekday morning catch ups. The seating area out the back is far enough from the street to cut out most of the road noise, and there was even a roaster in one corner, though it didn’t appear to be in use.


  • Coffee in the Valley is getting better
  • For now only coffee, with a kitchen coming soon
  • Their blend is rather nice
  • They have somewhere you can sit

Reverends Fine Coffee
Facebook Page
372 Brunswick St, Fortitude Valley

Pour Boy Espresso

Black Coffee at Pour Boy Espresso
Black Coffee at Pour Boy Espresso

Even on the edge of Brisbane’s CBD it is not hard to find a cafe. While not as common as they are further into the CBD, it still seems like there is one in every third office building. Like Pour Boy Espresso.

Pour Boy Espresso is a reasonable place to go, and what you come to expect from a city cafe. They sell food and coffee, and from the look at their set up, they can probably handle the busier parts of the day well. Though I did not get to test this hypothesis, because I was there a little ahead of the lunch rush.

I wasn’t there food, but I did get to try their coffee. Perhaps my expectations were raised by what I’ve heard others say of the place, but I was a little disappointed. The coffee was OK, like a lot of other cafes. For a black coffee it was served a little hot, and the flavour was fairly light, probably more suited for a milk coffee. In theory at least.

Maybe I missed something. A quick search on the cafe’s name online will return a decent number of enthusiastically positive reviews. There is even a Courier Mail article in there too. While I am sure that some people like this cafe a lot, and the food did look interesting, I am not sure that I agree. Pour Boy Espresso was a nice cafe, like so many more.


  • The coffee was ok, though served a little hot
  • Very open layout
  • Reasonable in a city full of reasonable cafes

Pour Boy Espresso
Phone: (07) 3172 1141
26 Wharf Street
Brisbane City

Queen Bean Office Coffee

Long Black at Queen Bean Cafe
Long Black at Queen Bean Cafe

One of the best things about working in Brisbane’s CBD again is that there is no shortage of cafes, even out towards the Valley. It is hard to be more than a block away from a cafe in most buildings, and some office blocks even have their own on the ground floor. The building where I am working is one of those.

The cafe is called Queen Bean and occupies a largeish space just off to the side of the building’s foyer. The coffee was not remarkable one way or the other, but the food is good. The cafe’s layout caters to their takeway and sit down customers, though in the morning rush it does seem to get crowded around the counter.

The coffee they serve is from a company called Green Bean Coffee, though unfortunately the roaster’s website has turned into a domainer’s landing page recently. The coffee has a lighter flavour than most commodity coffees, and does not become overpowering with every extra shot.

Queen Bean Espresso is a nice cafe, and if you are tired of wall-to-wall Di Bellavazza d’Oro, the brand of coffee is different enough to be worth trying. The worst I can say is be careful that when you order an extra shot, you don’t end up with a mouth scaldingly hot coffee.


  • Their coffee is OK, the food is good
  • They do not use one of the more common coffee brands
  • Apparently ‘extra shot’ sounds a lot like ‘extra hot’ at times

Queen Bean Espresso
545 Queen Street

The Queensland Museum has a Cafe

Dinosaurs and Coffee
Dinosaurs and Coffee

It was my second favourite place in the museum, just after the dinosaur exhibit and a little ahead of the gift shop. The Museum Cafe is located in next room to the Muttaburrasaurus mount on the north side of the museum, and opens out on to the Whale Mall.

Even though the Museum Cafe serves Lavazza coffee, and does well with it, the Giants of the Past exhibit is going to remain my favourite part of the museum. Even the combination of a respectable long black and the view over GOMA and the State Library just cannot complete with extinct charismatic megafauna.

Even though the cafe does cake and seems to have a good range of food, the impressive Muttaburrasaurus mount, the Minmi, new finds from Winton and the cast of the Mesozoic stampede footprints are hard for a black coffee to beat. Perhaps if they moved the Dunkleosteus, Triceratops and Tyrannosaurus skull casts into the cafe, it might help.

Unfortunately, the Queensland Museum’s cafe at South Bank is only ever going to be my second favourite part of the building. Considering that there are some nice Australian mammal megafauna mounts and a few other good natural history displays, this isn’t too bad.


  • Reasonably good Lavazza Coffee
  • Located in the Museum
  • Not as cool as dinosaurs

Queensland Museum South Bank
9:30am to 5:00pm daily
Phone: +(0)7 3840 7555
Corner of Grey & Melbourne Streets, South Bank
South Brisbane