We all have that New Zealand export we’d just love to claim as our own. It may be an actress, band, TV show or recipe. It won’t surprise you that my case, it’s a coffee roaster.

Allpress Espresso started in New Zealand, now has a roastery in Zetland, Sydney, has opened a café in London and is slowly spreading its brand to cafés all over Sydney. They even have an iphone app to help you track down their brews.

Much like Flint and Steel, Allpress Espresso in Zetland is a coffee roaster as well as a café, but in the case of Allpress, it’s more than a hole-in-the-wall. It’s all slick stainless steel, marble bench tops and sheets of glass, industrial-chic with a touch of retro fitting right into its Zetland surrounds. You can see right through the cavernous space to the roasterie and watch them work their magic on the beans. Or, you know, forklift sacks of coffee around. Whatevs.

It’s one of those places where I’ve never had a bad coffee but at the same time, the last few times I’ve stopped by it’s been less than stellar. I don’t know how to explain what I mean, but the coffee tastes ‘rushed’ these days. That said, I’m a huge fan of their Carmelo and City Espresso blends which I often buy for home use.

The focus may be on the coffee but there is also quite a good menu of things like pastries, sandwiches, cakes, artisanal breads and breakfasts like soft-boiled eggs with sourdough soldiers, avocado and ricotta. It’s the kind of food I’d refer to as ‘assemblage’ rather than cooking but that doesn’t mean it isn’t tasty.

Allpress is one of those places where you want to time your visit carefully. Like many of my faves its closed on Sundays. Unless you’re into waiting for a table, on a weekday, the pre-work coffee rush is a bad time to go, and on Saturday it’s not so great to show up in the morning as the breakky/brunch crowd takes over. I’ve had quite good luck at 2pm, but then again, maybe I should just learn some patience.

What NZ export would you like to claim as your own?

Allpress Espresso
58 Epsom Road, Zetland 2017
(02) 9662 8288
Monday-Friday 7:00am – 3:00pm
Saturday 8:00am – 2:00pm

Allpress Espresso on Urbanspoon

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10 Responses to Café review – Allpress Espresso, Zetland

  1. I don’t think it has hit our shores yet but Wellingtons Mojo Coffee is something I’d like to claim as my own. Fell in love with the stuff when I was there last year. Bugger the Kiwi celeb’s that call Oz home, I’m more interested in the coffee!

  2. Gaby says:

    There was an Allpress right accross the street from my hostel in Auckland and I didn’t try it :( I guess I was busier looking for free wi-fi (non-existent in NZ, apparently) than for a caffeine fix.
    Gaby recently posted…Australia &amp NZ 2011 30 March

  3. Senhor R says:

    I have a list of things I’d love to hand back to them! =)

    Allpress hits my expectations of what actual coffee should taste like most of the coffees I have ready access to.

    I probably sound like a philistine as I don’t really enjoy coffee with hints of blackberries avec jus d’wattle leaf and so on, and much as I can appreciate the flavours and delicateness of what they’ve done I want coffee that satisfies the bell curve of flavour that I made up so that I can sound like I know what I’m talking about.

    Carmelo is my default choice for home use but as always am open to suggestions for coffee that actually tastes like coffee!

    The Provincial Breakfasts and dippy eggs they serve are delicious too.

  4. Lau says:

    @John – The coffee, and the wine…

    @Gaby – Dammit! I’ve been meaning to post this for ages I knew I shoulda posted it sooner!

    @Senhor R – I would argue that hitting any point on your imaginary bell curve would ‘taste like coffee’, but I get that you want the whole-bell-curve flavour, whatever that means. I still don’t know.

  5. I really see you love coffee. Nowadays it is not so easy to find places where to find good coffee or even that they know how to prepare it.
    Spanish coffee is far from being consider a good one, I don’t know which is the problem but most coffee shops have turned to economic variants whose taste is far from being acceptable in a great percent of the occasions.
    I have been in Italy and maybe it was bad luck but some cappuccinos I drank where not that good.
    I wished I could be in Cuba where they used to say it is excellent!
    Well if you happen to come to Spain, you will have to play a little bit of hide and seek till you get a nice cup!
    I am glad to read your blog and check all this places you visit and I will check your opinion about macro coffe groups such as Starbucks or many others.
    I was never able to finish my cup of coffee in those places.
    Aroma y Cocina recently posted…SALSA AL AJO ARRIERO

    • Lau says:

      Hi Begoña. Thanks so much for checking out my blog! I am trying to read yours but my Spanish is so rusty.

      I agree with you on Spanish coffee! Although the cafe culture is awesome in Spain and completely unpretentious (in contrast to Australia), it is hard to track down good coffee. If I’m ever there again I will be sure to ask you advice…

  6. […] HQ, we decided to head southwards for something new. We were greeted by a huge warehouse space, Allpress-like in its interior. An order-and-pay-at-counter affair, said counter was laden with delicious […]

  7. […] Senhor R and I headed to Brasserie Bread one Saturday not so long ago after breakfast at Sonoma HQ in hopes of a quick coffee. We arrived during the breakky-to-lunch changeover. It was pretty damn busy in the light, bright café, with its communal tables, concrete floors and huge sheet glass windows. As you walk through the doors, the bakery counter is directly in front of you if you want to buy breads, pastries and cakes to go. To our left was the baking class room, which is visible from both he café and outside. To the right, beyond all the seating, was their order-and-pay-at-the-counter set –up of breakfast, pastries, sandwiches and Allpress coffee. […]

  8. […] warehouses are being converted into cafes and bars. Sympathetic renovations abound – think Allpress Espresso, Kitchen by Mike, Don Campos, Bread and Circus or Sonomo HQ. Further afield you’ve got the likes […]

  9. […] 7.30ish. They look like they do great coffee, and I LOVE coffee – check out the review on Corridor Kitchen, so I can kill two birds with one stone, check out a cool, looking new coffee shop and hype myself […]

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