An unassuming name, maybe, but this cafe has firmly cemented itself as one of the must-try cafes for Sydney-siders. Housed in an old bakery, John Smith Specialty Coffee was born in March 2014. The motivation was simple: the team had a vision of bringing together good food and great coffee under the same roof.
The heritage building has been given a breath of new life, with vibrant, colourful booths and bar-style seating facing the windows. The apparatus required for the large range of coffee offerings even line the walls – it really is a coffee-lovers’ haven.
The baristas at John Smith are always striving to get the best they can in the cup and are big on educating their customers. The public can join them for public cupping sessions in the cafe – a great way to gain appreciation for your daily cup and perhaps give those in the know some hints about what origins you’d like to see served up next.
John Smith sources its coffee from its sister company, Rebel Roaster. The house blend they like to keep consistent with tasting notes of chocolate and a hint of berry, but it’s in the black coffee that these boys really get to showcase their unique talent, bringing a variety of flavours to the cup. They source their guest beans from anywhere they believe has unique tasting flavours. Kenya and Ethiopia are current John Smith favourites but in the end, it always comes down to taste.
As well as espresso and milky coffees, these coffee connoisseurs happily brew up cold drip, cold brew, pour over and AeroPress coffees – unsurprisingly the cold drip is a real hit in the warm summer months.
John Smith Specialty Coffee thankfully serves breakfast and lunch all day. You can get Eggs Benedict in any self-respecting cafe, but here they serve it with pulled pork. The runny yolks combining with the tender pork and crusty sourdough makes for a meal straight from heaven. The seasonal veggie salad on the side is the perfect complement. To finish, try one of Brewtown Newtown’s Brewnuts (think cronut), or a treat supplied by Little Secrets Bakehouse.
There’s a real buzz here, a welcoming atmosphere from friendly staff who genuinely care that each and every customer has the best experience possible. The baristas and wait staff happily talk customers through coffee choices and are attentive and friendly. No wonder John Smith Specialty Coffee has so quickly become Waterloo’s happy place.