Top Cafes of 2016 - Sydney

We’ve run the numbers! Here are the best cafes of 2016 in Sydney, voted by real coffee lovers.

Learn how the rankings are calculated.

Best cafe Salvage Specialty Coffee in sydney for 2016

Espresso was fairly solid but the batch was the star, it was very sweet with a dash of citrus acidity and a remarkably clean finish.

Tasty Artificer Ethiopian espresso, fruity but also had some nuttiness. Columbian Mecca batch was sweet, had a slight bitterness on the aftertaste.

Sample Columbian espresso had some roof of the mouth acidity over a more caramel backbone - toothsome stuff.

Best cafe Cafe Without A Name in sydney for 2016

Don’t know what all the hype is. After they sent me out a burnt espresso the first time I put a negative review on here, the owner pipes up and persuades me to come back for another try. No good. Again, burnt. If they can’t get the basic of basics right -espresso, how can they continue to produce good coffee? Is it that hard to train your baristas in the art of proper extraction? Approx 25ml/25 secs - have that for free! Or maybe the machine needs to be cleaned properly? Very very disappointing. Unfortunately a sad reflection of most cafes in Sydney that think if they have a good Instagram following then their coffee MUST be good.

Quality and quirky with excellent espresso

Best cafe Artistry Coffee Craft Co. in sydney for 2016

Owners are great, and the flat white is easily the best I have found in the city. Flavours are strong and smooth and the milk is perfectly textured every time. Great beans to take home too. Rotation of filter beans is always a delight as well.

Just dropped in again this week for a 3/4 flat white. Still a treat every time. The difference between a cafe and somewhere that is passionate about coffee always shows through in the cup. Looking forward to my next visit. 👍🏼👏🏼

Reformatory beans for a washed Columbian espresso had a tasty bit of acidity across a more rounded chocolate backbone - nice. Smooth mouthfeel for the Ethiopian pour over coupled with a lovely balance of sweet, clean fruit and citrus acidity - real nice. Washed Panama Gesha for another pour over had a mighty fine orange and passion fruit flavour

#6

Lime Espresso

Sydney CBD

Best cafe Lime Espresso in sydney for 2016

Love Lime and still thinking of it while back in the UK. Named my new Acaia scales after your place Costas. All the best your Brit customer that left in July. Pete

Back in Sydney city and staying somewhere different which opens me to new cafes. I think I have another favourite cafe. Lime has great coffee, no really great! It’s also a gourmet sandwich bar, both pre-made and on demand. These looked sensational. Local city workers drop by for coffee and a sandwich. Definitely worth the visit. I will be returning tomorrow.

Best cafe The Reformatory Caffeine Lab in sydney for 2016

Panama 90+ Gesha cold fermentation had a buttery mouthfeel, low acidity and was very clean. Was more subtle than some Geshas, towards the vanilla, molasses end of the spectrum with maybe some apricot. A gentle brew. Espresso on an Ethiopian had a nice toffee tone

Barista had very strong passion for coffee, and various types filter coffees to explore. Had panama 90 , which was nice. However, seatings are limited and relatively expensive. But nice quality.

Panama Geisha Hacienda Esmeralda incredible. Thanks Jet

Best cafe Cavalier Specialty Coffee in sydney for 2016

Awesome coffee - nicely roasted, flavours tend to swing towards the smooth side of the scale. Less of the robusta flavours, but overall a very pleasant experience. Food menu is limited, but what they do, they do very well.

Guatemalan for espresso was pretty good, had an interesting orangey aftertaste Batch on Marvell Street Ethiopian was richly fruity and floral – very nice

Washed Nicaraguan from Marvell Street started with some attractive fudge flavours, did bitter a bit on the aftertaste. Batch on Ethiopian described as tasting of purple, gave me some tasty nectarines

#9

Coffee Alchemy

Marrickville

Best cafe Coffee Alchemy in sydney for 2016

Columbian pour over was clean with some stone fruits, was a bit milder than expected.

Experts of coffees. Experimental blended beans. Strong floral and fruity taste in flat white. It was quite new experience for me.

Great little roastery with loads of options for espresso, filters and cold drip

Best cafe Swallow Coffee Traders in sydney for 2016

Equipment LaMarzocco Linear PB Mythos One Grinder EK43 with custom twin doser Batch Brewer Tiamo Cold Drip

Kenyan espresso on Zest beans had some strong grapefruit action going on to start, slightly let down by a more bitter ending. Enjoyed the takeaway FW

Favourite local cafe! Best coffee in Rockdale by far and delicious food options. Staff are very friendly and attentive, it’s only made it easy for me to become a regular. Thanks Swallow!

They recently changed roaster from single o to Zest and upgraded grinder and machine. Coffee tastes even better now and service is always consistently good.

#11

Cream & Co.

Chipping Norton

Best cafe Cream & Co. in sydney for 2016

Have been visiting this place nearly every day for 2 years straight and the constancy in high quality coffee making is incredible. Rarely have I had a bad coffee. Food, service and ambience is great. Highly Recommended!

I travel all over Sydney for work. I’m so lucky this is my local. The coffee is always a high standard no matter which barista makes it. Seems on our travels my wife and I are always comparing the coffee we have to here. And are usually left thinking “we’d rather cream & co”. Especially if you have light milk as we do. Somehow they manage to get a creaminess others can’t. With most light milk ends up making a watery coffee. Not here. Food is always good quality, made with care and well presented. Not a huge menu but always something for any taste. If you want take away coffee. Their quick too. Without sacrificing quality.

Best cafe Artificer Coffee in sydney for 2016

It’s about the coffee, the whole coffee and nothing but the coffee. This place summed up the Surry Hills streetscape in a single cup of Latte; welcoming, smooth and relaxed. Perfect coffee.

Came here after all the great reviews. Coffee ok but my latte wasn’t very hot. Staff up themselves !!

Best cafe Pusher Espresso Bar in sydney for 2016

Delicious, quick, convenient for on the go - however not my place for a long sit in lunch.

Best cafe Ritual Coffee Traders in sydney for 2016

Coffe as you would expect for Gabriel branded. Milk was creamy and not too heavy so balanced well. Service was quick and no minimum for using card which was great. Only downside was Hard to find parking, but you could get lucky on the day.

Best cafe The Diver Cafe in sydney for 2016

Little Marionette CoffeeTippety TeasLa Marzocco Linea Classic

Coffee is inconsistent according to who's making. Most days coffee is ok but only 1 day in a week a barista made spot on. Kitchen is a joke. I ordered eggs on toast and waited 15 minutes and all that came out of the kitchen before was 3 bacon and egg rolls. The toast was not toast and eggs were dry and I could do better at home and I could not finish.

Best cafe Barefoot Coffee Traders in sydney for 2016

Marvel St Columbian for the espresso was alright with some red apple but bittered strongly on the finish Different Columbian for the batch was fruity, juicy and finished cleanly

Espresso was ok with maybe a bit of chocolate but fairly blended up - it was a blend after all. Batch was the highlight with some clean applely fruit gear going on.

Best cafe TopHat Coffee Merchants in sydney for 2016

Great coffee and love the arvo smash

Best cafe John Smith Cafe in sydney for 2016

Columbian espresso was sort of darker choc to start but did veer towards bitterness at the end Enjoyed the Kenyan batch, made me think of green apple skins with that style of sweetness but also an underlying tartness. As it cooled became more grapefruit with an accompanying increase in acidity. Another espresso, this time on a Costa Rican was more fruity and finished more cleanly than first espresso- nice.

Best cafe SteamTank Coffee in sydney for 2016

Kenyan from Mecca for the espresso was great, had a great combination of roasty brown notes, light acidity and subtle sweetness, it was real good. Accompanying FW to-go really hit the spot.

Double espresso on Mecca Kenyan came with a burnt caramel start , finished with increased acidity coupled with red currants. Batch on Mecca Columbian was clean and fruity - easy drinking.

Small Batch Guatemalan espresso was plums with a bit of underlining tartness mixed in. Really enjoy the Mecca Ethiopian batch, it maintained it’s clean citrus fruity flavour throughout

#20

Sample

Surry Hills

Best cafe Sample in sydney for 2016

Espresso was ok but the Kenyan batch was something special, deliciously sweet and fruity - real good.

Columbian espresso had a tannic feel that edged towards a more bitter ending Ethiopian filter was fairly bitter, I didn’t finish.

Smooth flat white hit the spot .. recommended

Best cafe waffle co. in sydney for 2016

Now called the Brew Lab Cafe, it’s a relaxed atmosphere, coffee is rich and silky. All in all pretty darn good.

Don’t love the bean they use here - a bit bland. But the consistency from the barista in terms of delivering a clean, balanced espresso with smooth milk is high. Also found the staff very friendly.

#22

Mrs P's

Burwood

Best cafe Mrs P's in sydney for 2016

George and the crew at Mrs P's always deliver. Outstanding single origin doppio with perfect extraction. #lifeistooshortfor$hitcoffee Thanks guys!

Great coffee! Staff were friendly and attentive. Atmosphere was a bit average - could do with a bit of a make over.

George and the team at Mrs. P's are always warm and welcoming. Add to that the consistent eye for detail making sure the coffee is delivered to a high standard and the always tasty food, that makes this the best cafe in the Burwood / Strathfield area.

#23

Story

Lane Cove

Best cafe Story   in sydney for 2016

Established by Jean Demirjian in 2012

Best cafe elbow room  in sydney for 2016

Review of a 5 senses house blend (Dark horse) LB: full bodied with jucy blackcurrant and high, but balanced acidity. Service was swift , but not very knowledgeable. Highlight was that cup was served as a double espresso with hot water on the side to add to taste; quite liked the idea (although it's not quite how a LB is prepared normally). Would go back for a pretty decent cup

Espresso on Market Lane Rwandan made me think of raisins and caramel - wholesome. FW traveller was pretty good

Espresso on Mecca had that taste you get from slightly unripe passionfruit, became more rounded towards caramel on cooling. As it cooled the batch had a distinct orange flavour - real nice.

Best cafe Gumption by Coffee Alchemy in sydney for 2016

Found espresso on Ethiopian fairly average - overly bitter with not much else Pour over on El Salvador had some initial sweetness, ending not so clean FW to-go was by far the best, had a nice almond vibe

Soft texture of flat white was remarkable. Atmosphere is also part of the attraction, I will often visit here when I get to go wynyard. It's good to see barista keeping quality of coffees, even though it's really busy there.

Kenyan espresso was at the bitter end of town Batch was a different story with a clarity to the fruitiness that made for an excellent cup.

Best cafe Bay Ten Espresso in sydney for 2016

Espresso was on a blend that gave a fairly blended flavour, was alright I love the space here.

Didn’t realise I never left a review... I love my long black made with the White Horse coffee beans. These guys at Bay10 definitely know what they are doing!

Lovely atmosphere, good coffee and wonderful food

Best cafe The Steam Engine in sydney for 2016

Toby’s Estate Nicaraguan filter toast for the espresso had a generous body and made me think of crystallised ginger. Pretty solid FW to finish.

What a delight to experience old-fashioned customer service with a smile, together with sensational coffee, served promptly. And run by a bunch of young ‘uns (well, they’re half my age!) who, quite frankly, deserve their success. Go try them and give them your support.

Ethiopian natural for the espresso had some berries to start, bittered on the aftertaste Filter on a Columbian had a bouncy fruitiness

Best cafe Roastville Coffee in sydney for 2016

Great almond flat white and good service

Great choice of beans! Out of the two long black beans, both pretty great. One was prefect for what I like but. Side note: get the dirty bird Benedict

Great V60, tried the natural Colombia whichwas roasted t perfection. Very sweet a bit of acidity and the bitterness was on spot. I sat outside and Sydney weather was kind to me for 2 hour 😁. Cost 7$ the only concern.

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