Smart bites and great coffee set this city centre café apart
It may surprise you to learn that Canberra makes the country’s best coffee. But it’s objectively true. Ona Coffee’s founder, Sasa Sestic, won the World Barista Championship in 2015, and his employee Hugh Kelly has won the Australian Barista Championship two years running, in 2016 and 2017.
Of Ona’s several cafés around Canberra, the bright and airy Cupping Room is our pick. This place is always buzzing, filled with hanging plants and lawyers mulling over cases – the café faces the clean-lined ACT Supreme Court. The service is warm, and the coffee delivers what those awards promise.
But it’s the food that really makes the place. Every dish is nicely balanced: halloumi fingers are crisp on the outside and surprisingly fluffy inside; pork sausages are given a nice acidic tang thanks to white anchovies; mixed exotic mushrooms are earthy with a hint of vinegar. For the health conscious, their super salad comes with a perfect egg, firm on the outside and runny inside, fresh snow pea sprouts and delicate pink pickled cabbage.
The only drawback is trying to get a seat at lunch on a weekday. Even though they have year-round outdoor seating, thanks to clear plastic panes around their deck, if you show up after midday, you will likely find yourself waiting for your lunch.
|Venue name:||The Cupping Room|
1/1-13 University Ave
|Opening hours:||Mon-Fri 7am-4pm; Sat, Sun 8am-3pm|