As a city of caffeine lovers, the best coffee spots in Melbourne are your home away from home. Although great coffee is a prerequisite, for me, it’s not just coffee that makes a cafe great. It is the whole feeling. A great cafe is a place that engages your five senses. It is a place where you can go and feel wrapped in its welcoming arms. You can just relax and be. You can sit with your friends, or you just want to people-watch alone, whiling an afternoon away. If you don’t feel sociable, you can just choose a quiet corner, whip out your laptop and get your work done. A great cafe is different things to everyone.
Which coffee spots in Melbourne have got this awesome vibe down to perfection? It is often something you have to find out for yourself. A vibe that is just right for me, might not gel with you. But busy multitaskers and coffee lovers do have a lot more in common than they realise, and certain places are just loved universally.
Melburnians are Spoilt for Choice
We all know that Aussies love a good coffee. Well, we Melburnians love it just that little bit more! In a city incredibly passionate about cafe culture, I am spoilt for choice with good cafe options. Filled with quirky independent coffee shops and those that boast their own freshly roasted blends with exciting flavours, this city may be a teeny tiny bit obsessed. But in a really good way!
I have done the hard work (um…travelled around, chilled out and drank coffee) to find some of the best coffee spots in Melbourne, so you don’t have to trek all over town to find them. Some are a little busy, because well, they are the best. But others on my list are more up-and-comers and still have that gorgeous hidden secret atmosphere about them.
The Caffeine Trifecta’s Top 5 Best Coffee Spots in Melbourne
Here are my top 5 best coffee spots in Melbourne, in no particular order. Get excited!
Market Lane Coffee Prahran Market
This was the first Market Lane Coffee, which owns five other gorgeous coffee spots across Melbourne, including two at the Queen Victoria Market. This little shop in the famed market in South Melbourne offers great food as well as coffees for drinking and freshly roasted beans to take home.
The owners are inspired coffee aficionados and love to talk all things coffee. They are all about coffee education and offer tastings. They can even recommend something extra special based on your palette and preferences.
Their online store is also fantastic for equipment and coffee subscriptions, and they offer classes in coffee making and appreciation as well. An all-rounder in promoting coffee culture in the city!
Seven Seeds has a cafe in Carlton and roasting headquarters in Fairfield. When everyone was all about the dark roast craze, the talented couple behind Seven Seeds did something different. They moved into lighter roasts and quality provenance beans and blends that were ideal for cold drip and filter brewing styles.
In Carlton, the chic decor of the refurbished warehouse is divine. The energy of the cafe is buzzing, and the food is lovely. You will be happy to sit here forever, if only you had forever to do so.
They do glorious hot coffees and also a range of delicious cold coffee beverages for our sweltery summer days. Regulars absolutely love it and swear that if there is a line, stick with it. It will be worth it!
They are also the owners of Brother Baba Budan in the CBD, which is a true undiscovered gem for coffee lovers. A tiny place with cute yet unpretentious decor and no sign out the front, you will be unsure of what you have stumbled upon until you are right on top of it. Or you could just follow the line of sleepy city workers looking for their mid-morning caffeine hit.
Dukes Coffee Roasters
A visit to Dukes Coffee Roasters in the CBD is a must on your tour of the best coffee spots in Melbourne. With sustainability high on their priorities, the cafe is completely kitted out in reclaimed and recycled materials and gives a simple, rustic and welcoming feel. Food is not their biggest focus. They do offer some delectable pastries and cakes from Mosaic which will definitely fill a hole and are raved about by their customers.
The coffee is their specialty, roasted here on the premises and available in blends and single source to take home. Or you can obviously get an incredible cup to sip here, and drink in the atmosphere together with the coffee.
Without the pretension of some coffee places, Dukes is accessible and enjoyable with friendly and knowledgeable staff. With a place like Dukes, it really makes the appreciation of good coffee something everyone can nurture.
No list of the best cafes in Melbourne would be complete without mentioning St Ali, tucked away in the backstreets of South Melbourne.
Started by the brains behind Seven Seeds and now going from strength to strength under different owners, St Ali is considered by many to be one of the motherships of wonderful Melbourne coffee. St Ali also has little brothers called Sensory Lab, Auction Rooms and Clement, if you are in other parts of the city.
The passion and enthusiasm of the team are extraordinary, and the vibe of the restored old building is welcoming and light. The energy of the staff is contagious, and you will leave feeling a high that is not just from awesome rich coffee. Late lunches are a must here and their prawn roll is to die for.
Proud Mary boasts great coffee and a gourmet foodie’s delight in their cafe in Collingwood. It has a cool, coffee rock star vibe, and fits right into this trendy inner city suburb of warehouse conversions and laneway eateries. In the cafe, sun streams in through the windows and warms the big wooden tables. Imagine drinking coffee whilst basking in the warmth of the sun!
Their beans are roasted at Aunty Peg’s black coffee brew bar not far away, which Proud Mary owns. Bonus point of the cafe? They offer an extensive tea menu as well, as well as some delectable desserts that go well with both coffee and tea.
Recommended for both food and coffee, you can hang out with friends and have brunch (another Melbourne tradition). Or just grab an awesome takeaway and get on with your busy day.
Share Your Favourite Best Coffee Spots in Melbourne
This is by no means a definitive list – Melburnians are way too lucky when it comes to good coffee spots! If I have left out one of your favourite best coffee spots in Melbourne, let us know where and why you like it. I would love the chance to check out somewhere different and new. Any excuse for a little more coffee!
Wishing you a great day,
Suk-yi is a caffeine lover, blogger, entrepreneur, air quality consultant, environmentalist, world citizen, wife and mother. She explores various topics related to coffee, tea, chocolate and everything in between on her blog. Make sure to follow her on her Facebook Page, Instagram Page and Pinterest Page.