Best Brunches in New South Wales
Both Sydney and Melbourne are known for having delightful brunch scenes. Each city is dotted with cute cafés dealing out steaming coffee and wafting the aroma of homemade pastries into the streets. This is especially true in Melbourne, where you can find healthy vegan and gluten-free options coupled with great coffee on every corner.
Luckily, we have done some work for you by seeking out the best brunch spots in each area. This list compiles high customer ratings across the Internet with exceptional personal experiences. It is by no means exhaustive, and there are certainly other great places we didn’t have the time to check out. However, these were the very top destinations I visited, and it might just make it easier to choose between the seemingly endless number of places to eat. Wake up, smell the coffee, and perhaps enjoy the best eggs Benedict you’ve ever had.
Offering coffee and a variety of food options, Basket Brothers seems like any other Sydney café at first glance. However, the freshness and quality of the food, as well as the friendly service, set it apart from the rest.
The coffeehouse, bar, and eatery was created four years ago by three friends. After much success, they opened a second location in Surry Hills, which is where we visited. The city location is light and airy with a modern farmhouse style. Diners can look out the floor to ceiling windows, observing the hustle and bustle of Sydney while peacefully devouring a delicious meal.
From healthy lunches to filling burgers, the menu features a variety of fresh and enticing options. Most importantly, they serve breakfast all day!
Arun, one of the founders, explained that his personal favorite dish is the smoked brisket hash due to its simple yet satisfying nature. Their signature dish, however, is the “full basket.” It features 2 eggs, double smoked bacon, Spiced chorizo, truffled mushroom, wilted spinach, roasted tomato, house relish, hash brown and sourdough, and Arun says “you cannot find it anywhere else.”
Arun also recommends the most frequently ordered dish, the classic crushed avocado, which I personally enjoyed. The avocado was creamy yet flavorful, thanks to the za’atar spice, and the tomatoes contributed a fresh juiciness to the dish. The vibrant beetroot hummus spread across the plate added a delightful flare. Plated beautifully and topped with an abundance of quality ingredients, it is certainly a stunning piece of toast.
The food at 169 Darlinghurst is good, but what truly makes the restaurant special is the atmosphere and the customer service. Simply stroll past the cafe and bar, and you might notice the uplifting piano music in the background accompanying the fresh air and greenery. Step indoors, and you’ll find a charming café with unique murals on one side and windows carved out of the sandstone walls on the other.
Scenes around 169 Darlinghurst
There is a wonderful flow between the inside and outside, and the shutters are always opened, a friendly waiter Max informed me. Peer out one of the windows, and you will see a quaint little garden. Or, sit on the patio and enjoy some fresh air.
The building also has an interesting history. It was built 30 years ago, and it has been occupied by various cafes since then. Darlinghurst 169 has been around for the past three. Underneath the café, lies the oldest running nightclub in Sydney, Tatler.
The way the staff treats their customers, also known as “darlings,” really sets the café apart. For example, whenever Max has the spare time, he enjoys trying to “just have a chat with the customer and make them feel comfortable.” This is true, as he came and sat at my table to speak to me!
As for the food, Max noted the chicken and rice is the most popular, but his favorite is the brown rice bowl with chicken breast, chorizo, and asparagus. I ordered the macro bowl, which had beans, kimchi, avocado, and some of the best sweet potato fries I have ever had. It was quite satisfying and extremely fresh tasting!
Lastly, 169 Darlinghurst serves breakfast and lunch every day of the week, but it also transforms into a lively cocktail bar on Friday and Saturday nights!
Everything, from the salt and pepper shakers to the walls, is proudly labeled with the Glider logo
Glider is one of Sydney’s many indoor-outdoor cafes. The venue is small yet retro, with brick walls and red accents. Order at the counter then chose a seat either shaded inside or at a table near the city passerby.
The café opened in 2014, right across from the Kings Crossing station. Ben, a founder, is originally from Thailand, and he prides himself on the delicious Asian fusion food the café serves. With an entire list of avocado toast options, loaded omelets, and even mint pancakes, the menu includes plenty of trendy and creative dishes. Mandy, who was working the counter, informed me that “the avocado toast with feta and truffle oil is a common favorite”.
I opted for the Glider omelet, however. It was stuffed with perfectly sautéed spinach, mushroom slices, and diced pumpkin, which added an interesting sweetness. The best part was the toast it came with though. I chose the soy and linseed bread, which I had never heard of before, and it was delicious. Soft in the middle, flavorful, and crispy around the edges, devouring it with fresh jam was seriously satisfying.
The Bond Store
Tucked away in a corner of a Melbourne hotel, The Bond Store has a cozy tavern feel. With authentic, time-distressed hardwood tables, and exposed brick walls, the dimly lit café has quite a bit of character. Now, the 19th-century warehouse serves quite a bit of good food.
From simple toasts and Rueben sandwiches to exotic egg creations, the prime branch location serves a wide variety of dishes from 7 AM to 3 PM. However, beware that the selection of freshly baked breads may dwindle by the afternoon hours.
Personally, ordering the Bond Store superfood salad was a wonderful choice. It was one of the most inventive and delicious combinations I have eaten in a while: greens, quinoa, corn, broccolini, tomato, roasted beet root, pumpkin, goji berries, buckwheat, avocado, and an egg. It’s a mouthful to say and a mouthful to eat, but the nutritious balance of sweet and savory totally hit the spot.
Saporito Cafe, Bar, & Grill
Yes, you can order an organic chai latte decorated with a foam leaf and dusted with raw cocoa powder, a popular Melbourne delight. Yet, you can also order pancakes with mixed berries and homemade ice cream (yes, for breakfast).
Breakfast favorites at Saporito
With an Italian inspired menu, the family-owned cafe offers a diverse selection of seasonal dishes. The customer service is also much above average, as the kind staff enhance the customer experience and create an overall friendly atmosphere. Our waitress even made some great suggestions on what to do while we were visiting Melbourne.
I ordered the pear porridge, and the extremely generous portion arrived in a sleek shallow black bowl. It was one of the best oatmeal dishes I have ever eaten, without fail. It almost tasted like (maple and brown sugar?) Quaker oats elevated higher than a Melbourne sky rise. The poached pear added a sweet hominess, the granola contributed a spiced crunch, and the mixed berries topped it off with a slight tang. Overall, it was such a comforting, enjoyable start to the day.
My friends also enjoyed the meal, one commenting it “was surprisingly satisfying,” and the coffee lived up to her high Melbourne expectations. Click here to view the full selection of drinks and brunch options.
More Magnificent Meals
It is impossible to experience all of the great eats in such a short amount of time. This was especially true during my trip to Melbourne, where we were only visiting for a long weekend! However, I am sure you are interested in looking for more amazing places to eat nearby your lodging accommodations. Perhaps check out the following blog posts for more ideas!
Culture Trip: The Best Brunch Spots in Sydney
Delicious: 19 Exceptional Brunch Options in Melbourne