Coffee Wars

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436 Glen Huntly Rd, Elsternwick

Rating: 4.5/5 Beans

By far one of my favourite cups of coffee in the greater St Kilda region, I am loco for Loco. The coffee here is wonderful (as is the food) and using their own signature 100% Arabica 8oz blend, the coffee at Loco is as charming as the young, hip and friendly wait staff that serve it.

Furthermore, what I like about Loco is that even when the boys behind the machine are frantically busy (churning out coffees at lightning speed, to meet the early morning, weekday rush), you will still receive a smile with your takeaway order; and being highly adept baristas, there is never a compromise on quality, or consistency. The coffee at Loco is always on par.

Popping in early one morning, I ordered a cappuccino and was happily satisfied. My coffee straight away gave me the caffeine hit I needed to tackle the day; and furthermore, tasted amazingly good. My brew was chocolaty warm and robust, with light to medium acidity, and was well balanced with delicate notes of melon and raspberry coming across the palate. What’s more, my cappuccino held a thick head of delectably creamy foam, with gorgeous latte art that entwined its presence – wow.


La Formaggeria

72 Acland Street, St Kilda

Rating: 4/5 Beans

The cutest little cheese shop you’ll find this side of town, La Formaggeria sells more than just fresh, ‘natural… chemical free cheese… made using traditional fermentation processes,’ as stated on their website; but they also showcase a ‘high quality range of… locally-made Victorian, Australian and traditional and modern Italian products’. Further to this, La Formaggeria also dishes up some genuine, authentic and true Italian style service and hospitality, alongside some great coffee to boot.

Having the pleasure of trying their ‘Clement – Specialty Coffee Roasters – Pony Blend’; I was a happy customer indeed. Opting for a short mac, my brew was full-bodied, rich and velvety and maintained a medium acidity. Delicately sweet and well balanced on the palate; I got just the pick-me-up I needed without overloading my adrenal glands. While drinking the smooth liquid, I imagined myself cosied up by a wood log fire, on a tranquil autumn or winter cottage getaway – my coffee was just so toasty, warming and good. Furthermore, the flavour profile of this unique Columbian, Brazilian and Costa Rica blend is what really transported me away – delightful notes of caramel, cherry and orange citrus, wrapped up in an indulgent dark chocolate finish, were attributes to be reckoned with. Divine.





Phamish Food and Wine Bar

30 The Esplanade, St Kilda

Rating: 4/5 Beans

Stopping by on a glorious weekday afternoon, I was feeling a bit under the weather and in need of a good coffee to sooth my weary soul. Yes – I probably could have gone with a scotch, but by gee, I thought the caffeine should about do. Happy with my decision, I sat outside on the front wind-protected patio; took in the soothing café tunes, and scenic St Kilda Esplanade landscape; and ordered myself a flat white ($3.50). Happy woman I was – my experience, just what the doctor ordered.

My flat white was delightfully done, mellow and warming and just what I needed to bring me back down to earth. Evidently the perfect coffee to go hand-in-hand with any food item off the menu, this Coffico Coffee, 100% Arabica Dolce Blend, was deliciously rewarding. My flat white showcased light caramel undertones, medium body, mild acidity and a clean finish. Furthermore, my brew was served at just the right drinking temperature. The only thing I would have liked to have received from my caffeinated beverage was a little more ‘kick’ but, being late in the day; many would argue; my central nervous system didn’t need it. Overall – happily satisfied on all accounts.


Capitan Fracassa

115 Carlisle Street, Balaclava

Rating: 4/5 Beans

Capitan Fracassa had me sold from the first time I walked in and tried their delicious food. I was fortunate to try their coffee too, but let’s be honest, when I first discovered this place; I was so concentrated on feeding my face with their many delectable offerings, and using their coffee as a mere digestive; their brew slipped under my coffee connoisseur’s radar. However, from a general customer’s perspective, I did remember the coffee at Capitan Fracassa being really good; hence, to take full advantage of the whole sensory experience of their beans on offer; I knew I had to return.

Going back to this humble and welcoming, family-run establishment, once again, my expectations were surpassed. Ordering a flat white and having the opportunity to completely immerse myself in the full personality of their custom-made, Gesha Coffee blend – I was sweetly rewarded. My coffee was rich and robust, evident of a medium to dark roast, and with hints of cocoa and hazelnuts, my experience was a gentle, soothing and earthly cup. Furthermore, my brew showcased a medium to full body, gave me the caffeine hit I needed and maintained a clean and mild acidity that made for an enjoyable cup to down.image of coffee from Locoimage of coffee from La Formaggeriaimage of coffee from Phamish

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