While Melbourne is the cultural capital of Australia – known for its celebration and expression of art – it’s also the top destination for brunch, no matter which neighbourhood you’re in.
You haven’t really been to Melbourne if you haven’t had a world-class coffee at one of its cafes, made all the better when paired with a delectable breakfast.
Melbourne has the best cafes. (Image: Visit Victoria)
We’ve gone on the hunt for the absolute best cafes for breakfast and coffee in Melbourne. Get ready to brunch your way through our cafe hit list below.
In between its tall buildings and green gardens, there is always something fun and exciting to do in Melbourne’s CBD and then there’s the city’s vibrant cafe culture. You’re guaranteed to be spoilt for choice when it comes to brunch spots in this neck of the woods.
1. Arbory Bar & Eatery
Arbory Bar & Eatery is best known as a night-time hangout, thanks to its view of the city lights over Southbank and the Yarra River. However, we think sipping your coffee in the morning light is a better way to take in those famous views.
Spend your morning at Arbory and take it all in. (Image: Visit Victoria)
For those who like a bit of heat first thing in the morning, opt for the chilli scrambled eggs with Vietnamese chilli oil, shallot jam and goats cheese served on a toasted croissant, or keep things cool with the delightful Pina Colada smoothie bowl served with tropical granola and seasonal fruits.
For those with a sweet tooth, the brioche French toast with orange curd, white chocolate, rhubarb compote, pistachio praline and strawberries will send you out to face the day on a sugar high.
Breakfast is the best meal of the day, especially at Arbory Afloat. (Image: Visit Victoria)
Breakfast served: from 7:30 am – 11 am daily
Address: 1 Flinders Walk, Melbourne
Take a short walk from the CBD and you’ll find Noisette, the modern French cafe by the ocean offering a full array of savoury treats, mouth-watering pastries, perfectly baked bread, warming coffee, and colourful cakes to satisfy every taste.
For those who are feeling extra sweet today, choose from an array of fluffy and sweet doughnuts that taste as good as they look. Or for lovers of the classics, opt for traditional soft and buttery croissants, or crispy and flakey pains au chocolat to kick start your day.
Grab one of Noisette’s infamous croissants or pains au chocolat and your day can’t go wrong.
Address: 84 Bay St, Port Melbourne
3. Hardware Société
Find a taste of Paris hidden down a Melbourne laneway, thanks to Hardware Société. Located in the heart of Melbourne, expect a delightful taste of France thanks to treats like The Continental, featuring lemon curd yoghurt, house-made granola, orange and lychee jelly on a fresh-baked croissant.
Start your day in the perfect way at Hardware Society.
For those who want to spice it up, the orange and Pedro Ximénez slow-cooked beef brisket Croque Madame will vie for your attention. For something lighter, indulge yourself in the bircher muesli with blueberry vanilla compote, poached rhubarb and maple pecans – available all day.
We can’t say no to brunch at Hardware Society.
Address: Locations at 10 Katherine Place and 123 Hardware St, Melbourne
South Melbourne is a little paradise with a lot to offer. Besides its heritage architecture, leafy green streets, multicultural markets, and the beach only a tram ride away, it’s home to Melbourne’s best cafe culture and gourmet grazing.
4. The Kettle Black
The Kettle Black is a truly distinctive dining destination thanks to its chic terrace house setting with warm finishes of soft oak timbers and polished concrete, offset by mischievous green furniture and marble tiles.
Relax and enjoy the morning bliss at the Kettle Black.
For something unique, try the Tiramisu Croffle – a croissant waffle combination served with tiramisu cream, espresso syrup, cocoa nibs, and raspberries. For a bigger feed, opt for the Seasonal Avocado dish, topped with lime and crème fraiche, a poached egg and more.
If you’re craving pancakes, you must try the Blueberry and Ricotta Hotcakes topped with seasonal berries, maple syrup and whipped cream (don’t forget to take photos for your Instagram story, the plating is spectacular).
The Kettle Black is one of Melbourne’s most sophisticated cafes. (Image: Visit Victoria)
Address: 50 Albert Rd, South Melbourne
A historic precinct dating back to the 1840s, the dynamic suburb of North Melbourne is popular for its typical Victorian-style architecture, and its range of cafes, restaurants, and boutiques.
5. Phat Milk
Phat Milk is located just a small step from Melbourne CBD’s hustle and bustle and offers restaurant-quality food, all prepared in-house by qualified chefs.
When you step foot inside, you’ll immediately be greeted by its pink interior, a striking green area at the back, and Phat Milk’s Instagramable decorative wall.
You’ll find no ordinary eggs benedict here, instead get your spicy hollandaise fix by ordering their Field Mushroom and Swiss Gruyere croissant, topped with scrambled eggs.
For summer on a plate, give their Fruity Porridge a go. The mix of nuts, grains and seasonal fruit with honey, dulce de leche and coconut yoghurt is the perfect treat for warm weather.
The Field Mushroom and Swiss Gruyere croissant is heaven on a plate.
Address: 208 Mt Alexander Rd, Travancore
6. Elephant cafe
Elephant cafe is the ultimate restaurant-cafe destination in Melbourne’s Flemington. Its contemporary and full-of-flavour menu is designed for all appetites. It’s the perfect place to enjoy a cup of coffee with your furry four-legged friend by your side.
Indulge yourself in Melbourne coffee at Elephant Cafe.
We all love a good eggs benny, but the Benny Salmon (served from 11 am) on a brioche bun with poached eggs, cream cheese mixed with pesto and capers, herbs and hollandaise sauce is worthy of a chef’s kiss.
For those of us with simpler tastes, opt for the Jumbo Smash Avo accompanied by its house-made beetroot puree with feta, dukkah, veggies and fried eggs – your day can’t go wrong.
Elephant Cafe’s eggs benedict on a brioche are to die for.
Address: 135 Mt Alexander Rd, Flemington
7. So & So
The vintage and repurposed furniture at So & So will make you feel instantly at home. The dog-friendly outdoor garden with its pot plants, watering cans and pallets is a great spot to disconnect for a while.
For those in a savoury mood, pick The Blacksmith – braised beef brisket with Dijon mustard and caramelised onions. Those looking to add a touch of sweetness to their morning will enjoy the Belgian hot waffle topped with yoghurt, fresh fruit and pear syrup – you’re in for a treat.
Brunching at So & So is mouth-watering.
Address: 135 Mt Alexander Rd, Flemington
East Melbourne and its alternative artsy and hippy district with fancy cafes all-round will sweep you off your feet with its charm.
Situated in the heart of Fitzroy, this brand-new acai bar with its sleek, minimalist interior and a mauve-coloured floor to match the rich hue of the acai it serves, is as pleasing to the eye as it is to the tastebuds.
They offer a range of acai bowl combinations on the menu, or you can build your own, which they’ll prepare right in front of you. Lovabowl also offers other simple but delicious options, like avocado or peanut butter and banana on toast.
It can get quite hectic on the weekends, so make sure to pop in early to secure a spot.
Lovabowl serves happiness in a bowl.
Address: 278 Queens Parade, Fitzroy North
9. Darling cafe
Simple, elegant and modest, Darling cafe is a favourite catch-up spot for both locals and travelling foodies The menu focuses on quality, locally-sourced ingredients alongside speciality coffee and an extensive range of pastries, smoothies, juices and alcoholic beverages.
Darling cafe is a favourite catch-up spot for both locals and travelling foodies.
Top picks from the menu are the Breakfast Bruschetta, complete with avocado, bacon and goat cee, or the delicious Sticky Date Pancakes with seasonal fruits and butterscotch ice cream. Whatever you choose, the menu is an excellent excuse to wander down Darling St in South Yarra.
Darling cafe is the place to be for good food and coffee.
Address: 2 Darling St, South Yarra
10. Laurent Bakery
Get lost in the delight of real French artisan baking at Laurent Bakery. This French café, located in Doncaster’s Westfield shopping centre (one of 18 stores), is best known for its pastries. Satisfy your sweet tooth and opt for a comforting French hot chocolate before a big shopping session. Or get curious and have a look at their recently launched Croissant Bar by Laurent in Chadstone Shopping Centre. The first of its kind to open on Australian soil, it features 12 different croissants which range from savoury to sweet.
Bonjour! Grab a croissant at Laurent Bakery for the perfect morning.
Address: 619 Doncaster Road, Doncaster
With a passion for the finest things in life – cafes, restaurants, boutiques, bars and live music venues – West Melbourne is the perfect destination to immerse yourself in the arts precinct and indulge in a cup of coffee or two.
There’s nothing a bagel can’t fix. Head down to the lovely Moonee Ponds and treat yourself to one of Ritzy’s wide array of delights.
There’s nothing a bagel can’t fix.
From smoked salmon to eggplant parmigiana, the delicious bagels will satisfy any hunger. If you’re looking for sweet treats, Ritzy also offers chocolate donuts and unique pastries such as raspberry croissants.
Ritzy is the perfect brunch spot to satisfy your hunger.
Address: 25 Pratt St, Moonee Ponds
12. Alfa Bakehouse
Located in the centre of small suburbs Yarraville and Seddon, Alfa Bakehouse is home to fresh, local produce.
To spice your morning up, pick the Chilli Eggs Scramble which adds chipotle to a classic dish to add a little fiery twist. Or opt for the Hash Brown Benedict – it might be a safer option, but it’s far from boring, and who could resist the homemade hash browns it’s served with.
Starving? Choose the Big Alfa – it’s a classic big brekkie dish that your taste buds will thank you for later.
The chilli eggs scramble are a must at Alfa Bakehouse.
Address: Locations at 42 Anderson St, Yarraville and 97 Victoria St,
13. Rockabye Candy
What’s better than starting your weekend right at the beach? Smell the fresh air of the ocean at Rockabye Candy, situated on the foreshore of Altona Beach in Melbourne’s West. Whether you’re brunching on your own, with family, kids, or friends – there’s something for everyone.
There’s something for everyone at Rockabye Candy.
The staple Rockabye breakfast dish, complete with grilled bacon, swiss and tasty cheese, and homemade relish, is so good there are no words to aptly describe it.
Another tasty option is the Smashed Avocado, with a sweet pomegranate and mint twist to it. Beware, the kitchen closes at 3 pm.
Make sure to try the smashed avocado at Rockabye Candy.
Address: 34 Pier St, Altona