Most of these are my personal favourites (so please don't get mad if your favourite places aren't there), plus other big names that I know I'll have to include. I kept them confined to where I would personally go if I wanted to eat around UTS, so the covered area isn't particularly broad - of course the more time you're willing to spend travelling, the more options become available.
Some of my go-tos would be Haven tailoring coffee joyously (Surry Hills) for relaxed brunch, Takara (Haymarket) for a quick & cheap Japanese bento box lunch when you're running late for class, Pausa Cafe (Ultimo) for Media Lab students who NEED THEIR COFFEE, Oliver Brown (Haymarket) for some last-minute studying somewhere that isn't uni (open til midnight every day. What a hero.) and Powerhouse Museum's Black Star Cafe(!!!) for your hit of strawberry/watermelon/rose cake and when you're desperately in need of an oasis in the middle of a campus located in Sydney's CBD. I also understand Powerhouse Museum's BSP will only be open until the end of June this month! (I, the conscientious journalist and blogger will double check for you.) Get on it people!!!!
Let me break it down for you:
- Knights Coffee & Tea Co. Their coffee is so good there's almost always a small rave party of people during 'suit rush' to get their caffeine hit. That's when you know you're in good (busy, but good) hands.
- Coffee Trails. Premium toasted sandwiches (the kind where they earnestly tell you where their ingredients are sourced). Not cheap, but screw it. #treatyoself
- Mezbah. Mediterranean food, and argileh if you are so inclined. They also serve alcohol, so you'll see many a suit coming in for a few low-key drinks at the end of the business day.
- Haven Tailoring Coffee Joyously. Though technically this should belong to Surry Hills, it's so insultingly close to Central Station that I had to mention it. This cafe has really hit the press hard lately and is the hottest little spot this side of Sydney's CBD.
- Cafe80, located inside the UTS Busines School/Dr Chau Chak Wing Building/"paper bag building". Their social media is off the hook, plus $3 coffee every day is pretty great. Great huge portions and lovely attentive staff. Open til 9pm for all the zombies at uni late.
- Penny Lane. Functioning as a cafe and bar, this is where all the cool urbane academics hit up for coffee meetings. PLUS UTS WiFi/study area/general computer area right in front, so you only need to move in and out by about 50 metres according to how much caffeine you need.
- While this isn't on the map, UTS students will know that the UTS Art of Food on the Haymarket campus is a secret jem. Student hack: if you show up after 5pm, their pastas & salads are on sale, which means $5 DINNER BABY.
- Mecca Espresso Ultimo. This one goes without saying; most ABC and UTS insiders who know their way around the area almost unanimously agree that Mecca serves one of the best coffees around. However, as a student, it's not necessarily a great space to hang around in; there are no powerpoints, no WiFi, and they don't serve food (other than what's displayed in the counter) between 11am - midday (ie prime brunch time). Ah, well - you win some, you lose some.
- Black Star Pastry pop-up, Powerhouse Museum. Watch out - they're only open for less than a week from today, closing August 16 (!!!). Great open space, fairly reliable WiFi available, and the classic comfort food we have all come to expect from BSP.
- ASAP Cafe & Thai. (I think it has been renamed Lego House?) While it might not have all the aesthetically pleasing design that most brunchers have become accustomed to, I was surprised at my experience here. Cheap prices, ridiculously large range of food (both 'typical' brunch offerings as well as lunchtime Thai specials). They also have WiFi and an adorable table in a tiny courtyard, which would be charming during Spring.
- Local Mbassy. The new popular kid on the block, this place is already making waves in the brunching and food-blogging community. Not much more to be said, really. (Can't give my 2c yet - visiting tomorrow! ;) WiFi: I asked. They said yes! (We're getting married in December etc.)
- The Upside Cafe (previously Project 8 Cafe). A great close by haunt for organic food, healthy shakes and an excellent burger. WiFi: yes.
- Qube on Bay. A cute cafe closer to Broadway than Ultimo with all the essentials covered; specialty coffee, great food and WiFi.
- Takara Japanese Dining. $10 bento boxes for lunch and dinner... A student's dream come true.
- Oliver Brown. This place is included because sometimes you need to just study somewhere near uni that just isn't uni.
more to come...
w/ luv, ya girl cloud rainbow xo
P.S. Moment of silence for our dear friends Blackflower Patisserie and Autolyse Central Park, may they rest in peace. Gone but not forgotten