Out And About: NGV & Ai Weiwei

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Confession time. I wasn’t at the National Gallery of Victoria that day to see the art. It was my coffee obsession (addiction) {They do a good latte}. So to stumble upon this oversized construction, which sparkled and glistened in the summer sun in the massive gallery courtyard, was astonishing. Ai Weiwei’s Forever Bicycles is just one of his works on show until the 24th of April and the exhibition is free. To learn more about Ai Weiwei click and watch this short flick called Never Sorry, the trailer for the award winning production directed by Alison Klayman.

Out And About: Wee Jeanie Cafe, Yarraville

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I had ANOTHER lovely coffee at Wee Jeanie cafe in Yarraville the other day and thought it was time I shared their marvelousness. Because I have never had a bad coffee here. They have only just opened a brand new kitchen, which must extend what they are able to share in the way of food. But, if you read my blog, you would know my main focus is coffee. Right near the Yarraville station, in Melbourne’s Inner West, this is a lovely warm environment with in and outdoor seating, friendly, gifted barristas and a gorgeous wall mural painted by Jacqueline Smith, alias Shy Girl. Sorry Wee Jeanie, I stole the photo below from your Facebook page. What can I say? It was better than mine…12010563_1035549459822972_1797219768058990237_o

Out And About: 2 Days In Sydney And Cafe Con Leche, Surry Hills

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Three years ago while in Sydney, after many failed attempts at finding an acceptable coffee, I stumbled upon Cafe Con Leche in Surry Hills. It is a tiny corner shop serving Columbian dishes and smooth-creamy-chocolatey-Arabican coffee. Phew! This time I didn’t muck around and my internal radar remembered exactly how to get my ass back down there. Lovely service and the coffee was as good as last time. Such a relief! Such a blessing! I have since discovered I am not alone in thinking this about Cafe Con Leche’s coffee. Reviewers consistently agree.  
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The coffee is Columbian Connection a local roast using Columbian Arabica beans – single origin. Rob, my Cafe Con Leche barista, doesn’t think you can get this roast in Melbourne yet. Shame that!
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The decor is South American with bright colours, Latino poster art, warm glowing pendants and shelves of South American packaged produce. I haven’t eaten there but the reviews are great. When in Sydney, Cafe Con Leche should be your coffee destination. Thanks Rob!

Out And About: East Elevation, Brunswick

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I recently had a lovely day out with my friend Jamie. He found the day spa so I was assigned the task of tracking down what has to be the coolest space in Brunswick, East Elevation. It is a coffee shop, yes, but also a chocolate factory. Who would have thought?

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Of course we had to try their hot chocolates, so I chose the chilli-choc version. It was perfectly hot, perfectly not-too-sweet and perfectly creamy. (Pictured below. Image from The Ultimate Hot Chocolate)

Ultimate Hot Chocolate

I tried the The Otway Pork Belly & Roasted Pears w/ Lentils, Cherry Tomatoes & Radicchio Salad. It was at the recommendation of the waiter and I thought it was divine. Jamie enjoyed Smoked Free Range Chicken and Wild Rice Salad.

Otway Pork Belly and Roasted Pears

The atmosphere here is warm but edgy-cool. The floor staff are extremely helpful and engaged and happy to be consulted on choices. The space is cavernous but filled with warm wood and industrial chic. Would I go back? Short answer? I already have.

East Elevation

351 Lygon Street

Brunswick east 3057

Victoria

Mon-Fri 8am-4pm

Sat-Sun 8.30am-5pm

(Kitchen closes one hour before cafe)

East Elevation

+61 3 9381 5575

Monsieur Truffe

+61 3 9380 4915

Out And About: The St Kilda Dispensary

The latest discovery to indulge my daily coffee addiction is The St Kilda Dispensary. Great coffee. I could stop there but the Dispensary meets so many more of my health care needs. There is a calming, fantasy-like atmosphere. Stepping inside the Dispensary is like stepping back to wartime St Kilda, with a theme of all things medical. Even the “URINE SAMPLES” cupboard in the toilet is a fine and authentic tribute to times past. I love the time-outness of this place. Kristy and Brad are the floor staff. They are friendly and consistent in their delivery of a perfect brew. They use Allpress, which I love.10410231_430521507116403_7891894389967115428_n Pictured above are Friday’s special. Doughnuts with your choice of jam, lemon curd or salted caramel filling. Pictured below is Kristy. The Dispensary is her brain child. Kristy’s background is in acting, which I believe has contributed to her understanding of creating the Dispensary’s authentic vintage yet playful atmosphere – there is no detail overlooked, from the paint colour on the walls, to the type font used on all their marketing materials. Apparently their customers have also contributed to the decor by donating original medical equipment and memorabilia.11036207_436089696559584_317874256098823722_n

the-dispensary-1 1401323272478But most amazing of all is that the St Kilda Dispensary Cafe, was once the actual St Kilda Dispensary (see picture below), a one stop health care clinic with doctors rooms upstairs and a pharmacy below. 11667403_431826846985869_2197565795787194532_nThanks for creating a space I love to visit. See ya both later today!