Surry Hills’ Reuben Hills has been the talk of the town for some time, and the lines to get in aren’t slowing down any time soon. Why so popular you ask? Well, the trendy people who live and play around this area are as fussy about their coffee as they are about their chinos, and here you can find some of the best beans going around.
The owner, Russell Beard, travels the world finding the best coffee beans to roast on site and sources most of from south of the border including places like from to El Salvador, Panama, Colombia and Costa Rica. The food’s theme follows suit and is inspired by the food he eats on his bean hunting trips. Think full and flavoursome sandwiches, jam-packed tortillas and exotic eats for those with a sweet tooth like the ice cream sandwich or the salted caramel milkshake.
But being more of sucker for savory, I couldn’t even entertain the idea of looking at anything other than the ‘NOT Reuben’ sandwich. Rye bread generously stocked with a salty wagyu brisket, manchergo cheese and pickled coleslaw dressed with horseradish cream served in a neon basket, diner style. The sandwich was nothing short of amazing – full, delicious and left me wanting more even though my pork belly was at full capacity. My not-so-piggy friend opted for the lighter option, the crab taco’s which are filled with chunks of crab, avocado, sweet corn, smoked tomato and rocket. They are fresh, filling and full of flavour, but no match to my Not Reuben.
The café itself is as interesting as the menu. The neon light installations are a stark contrast to the exposed brick walls, tiled tables and unassuming entrance on Albion Street. Inside is a lively, modern and airy space with plenty of ventilation coming from the rear’s roller door. The staff are incredibly friendly and efficient despite being busy around the clock with pigs eating from early morning through to late afternoon. If you’re an impatient pig I suggest you opt for a late lunch around 3-4, but don’t expect to be hungry for dinner time.
The Bitter: The coffee beans have a bitter taste, but that is the only bitter about this place
The Sweet: Salty wagyu Brisket and salted caramel milkshake, death row meal worthy combo
The Damage: A meal and milkshake will set you back about $25.