Searching for the Best Coffee in Melbourne

Long black at St. ALi's - Photo credit: Katherine Lim
Long black at St. ALi’s – photo credit: Katherine Lim

Long blacks, flat whites, cappuccinos, lattes – such terms evoke strong emotions from the numerous addicts who relish the aroma, taste, zing or zip as a supremely important part of their day. As an ex-barista and devout coffee fan, I too am in this guild of caffeine appreciators, as I recently found myself searching for the best coffee in Melbourne after living there for a year.

While it’s a subjective quest, I feel compelled here to share my top three cafes, all which produce a seriously splendid cuppa.

1. Cavallini – Clifton Hill

This little artisan bakery, lying on Queens Parade in Clifton Hill, served up my best coffee in Melbourne. The smooth aromatic journey I experienced here was ineffable, as I was whisked away on a caffeine high in stages. My long black was just the right temperature and had the perfect combination of strength and taste with a velvety texture. The atmosphere is also very good, being European, bustling and bulging with baguettes.

best coffee in Melbourne
Seven Seeds, Carlton – photo credit: Charles Haynes

2. St. ALi – South Melbourne

Coming in close second, St. ALi, located in South Melbourne, know how to make a fine cup. Like a caffeine laboratory, St. ALi displays various containers of coffee above eye level aside wooden boxes, as they roast and grind on site. Like Cavallini, here you’ll get a smooth ride, as the flavours wash against the back of your palate in subtle waves before giving you that quality buzz you’ve always dreamed of. It’s also a busy place, so expect a wait during peak times.

3. Seven Seeds – Carlton

Many consider Seven Seeds to make the best coffee in Melbourne. While it produces an excellent cup, I found it didn’t have quite the ambrosial zing of the aforementioned places. Here you’ll find another warehouse style cafe (pictured above) hidden beneath the urban waffle on Berkley Street, Carlton. Perfect for the riding connoisseur, you can leave your bike inside, take a seat amongst the throng of caffeine worshipers, and enjoy.

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