How many cafes would you walk past to get a cup of coffee? With Grindhouse Espresso in Stones Corner, it is about five, depending on how generous you are with the definition of cafe. Grindhouse can be a little hard to find with just the street address. Tucked out of sight just off Logan Road, I walked past it about three times the first time I tried to get to it. Fortunately the cafe explained how to find the place through their Twitter account.
In a small space dominated by the coffee machine with only a few tables and no real menu Grindhouse is almost an espresso bar. It is a good thing they do it well. Grindhouse Espresso roasts their own beans and sells specialty coffee beans as well as by the cup.
Grindhouse Espresso so far is the best, most consistent cafe I have found in the area. While it is not really a lunch or breakfast destination, if you need a coffee and perhaps even somewhere to sit to enjoy it, Grindhouse is a safe bet.
Right next to the train station. There are few places as good for a cafe as that, and Espresso Boutique’s location just next to Eagle Junction railway station is pretty spot on. It looks like a hole-in-the-wall cafe at first glance, at least until you go inside, or see the menu.
Espresso Boutique is a cosy cafe, with a large table dominating the space, and a number of smaller ones scattered around it. There is a bookshelf (with borrowable books) and a few small tables up against one wall with the specials board. The cafe also features a decent kitchen, and the lunch and breakfast menus reflect this. The big breakfast was not as full-on as it is at Campos, but the price reflects this as well. There was no trouble swapping out the eggs for extra mushrooms either.
Espresso Boutique serves Schibello coffee and does a respectable long black, and stocks T2 tea served in nifty teapot-cups for those people who like soggy leaves. Appropriately, above the counter there is an espresso menu, listing single shot, doppio and ‘con panna’, espresso served with a dollop of whipped cream.
The specials board looked interesting, with items like zucchini and sweet corn pancakes and a spinach, bacon and goat’s cheese tart. The food in the cabinet looked fresh and seemed to confirm Espresso Boutique’s claim that they sourced their ingredients fresh from the Brisbane and Clayfield markets.
We did not try the lunch menu, but it did look impressive. From the layout to small touches like bag hooks under each table, Espresso Boutique’s attention to detail was noticeable. It did not appear to be as much of a coffee specialist as some other cafes, such as the Coffee Guy, but the cafe certainly succeeds as somewhere to grab a light meal on the weekend. I would be surprised if Espresso Boutique isn’t as good when you’re grabbing a coffee on the way to the train as well.
Racecourse Road is not a good place to go for coffee; there are not many places that can do a passable long black. You can find dining, a Coles Metro and occasionally even large numbers of drunk people with a temporary interest in horses, but finding a good coffee is harder. Unless you go to a small espresso bar called Fonzie Abbott, just next to Vagelis.
Fonzie Abbott is named for the first pet and first street that one of the owners lived on, just like the pornstar name meme. I can only assume that this is somehow related to the rooster in their logo.
The cafe is more of an espresso bar, with a small footprint and not too many seats. The coffee they serve is not just the best on Racecourse Road, but compares well against cafes in other areas too.
Fonzie Abbott uses both blends and single origin beans, with the single origin beans changing regularly. There are a few light meals and a selection of beers available as well, and apparently they also do Espresso Martinis on Fridays.
There are not many places on Racecourse Road that can do good coffee, and fortunately Fonzie Abbott is an exception. The decor tends towards hipster, with its second-hand aesthetic and the mix of blends and single origin beans. It is my pick of the street if you want a good coffee, long black or otherwise.
Better than the other cafes on Racecourse Road, because…
There is a strong positive correlation between the number of cool suburban cafes in Brisbane and the value of the Australian dollar. This is hardly controversial as any country able to support a growing number of nifty locations serving coffee away from the inner city must have something going for it.
You’ll find one more of these on the corner of Thorrold and Dickson Streets in Wooloowin. Little Big Man Espresso is in a good position for the morning commuters. Dickson Street carries a lot of through traffic, and it is surrounded by houses and near a train station.
Little Big Man Espresso is actually located in a mostly unchanged old corner store. With the counter at the back of the building, there are tables and chairs inside and a number of stools and low tables just outside the door. There was even one solitary drawing on one of the walls, hopefully promising more to come.
The cafe looks very cute and is so new it has no real visibility online just yet. They serve Genovese coffee and do a respectable job with it, and already seem to be attracting the early morning weekend crowd. If you live in Wooloowin, be sure to check it out, a local cafe is not to be ignored.
Great commuter location
Serves decent coffee
Little Big Man Espresso Facebook Page
86 Dickson Street
It is hard to find a good coffee in the city outside of normal work hours. After 4pm, almost all of the cafes close, leaving just a handful huddling around the mall, nothing like the number of options available during the workday.
Bar Moda is an office hours cafe. Sitting in the foyer at 307 Queen Street and surounded by other office blocks, it is not likely to get much foot traffic on the weekend. During the week is another matter entirely though.
Bar Moda has two counters, one facing out of the building and another inside. There is seating near both, but most importantly, the two counters keep the takeaway orders turning over fast. The coffee is strong and good, though the latest one I had was pretty hot for black coffee. I imagine it would have been fine as a milk coffee.
There is one more thing: they have free WiFi via CafeScreen. The service looked interesting and it ran an image insert/replace in some RSS feeds within Flipboard. Twitter and email were fine, but I did not stay long enough to try it out properly.
Takeaway orders move fast
Good coffee, better if you like it with milk
307 Queen Street
Brisbane CBD, 4000
ph: 3221 0101