Flying Fox Bar

 

The Flying Fox Bar is located in the departures lounge at Avalon Airport. At 5:00am, any coffee is good coffee but that said, it is an airport departure lounge and so, you would not expect the world’s best coffee.

The coffee is served in one of those not quite cardboard, not quite plastic cups which, of course, have the capacity to burn the tips off your fingers when picking the cup up. The texture and strength of the coffee were both as you might expect from an automatic machine more so than a barista brewed coffee – even though, there was a barista making the coffee.

But, that said, when you are up before the sparrows and heading off on a flight, maybe an average cup of coffee is better than no coffee at all. And so it was with this morning’s brew.

The message is clear – don’t drive out to Avalon to try the coffee. If you’re out there catching a flight, the Flying Fox Bar’s is certainly better than nothing.

 

Address: Avalon Airport Departures Area
80 Beach Road
Suburb: Avalon 3212
Web Site: www.airport.com.au
Telephone: Not available
Open: Seven days per week
Price: $4.10
Coffee Suppliers: Lavazza
Headline: There’s a little bit of “beggars can’t be choosers” going on here. The coffee is average but at 5:00am on a Friday morning, it has to be better than a “coin in the slot” coffee
Coffee Rating: lessthanthree

Ground Zero

 

Ground Zero seems to be a relatively new cafe in one of the Bellarine’s big growth zones, Drysdale. Set away from the main shopping precinct on the main Portarlington Road, you’ll find the cafe in the front of an industrial estate on Murradoc Road. The estate is typical of many such set ups where factories and offices form a “U-shape” on the block and small businesses of various kinds take up the tenancies.

I’m sure that the tenants and the other businesses in the area are really pleased to have a cafe on their doorstep, as, it would appear, are the mums that drop their kids off at school and head in for a coffee and a chat. But even with the warmth of that environment, the building is, after all, a converted factory which can’t really be camouflaged. I would think that the building might very hard to heat during the winter.

I ordered two coffees – one for myself and one for the person I was meeting there. A few minutes later, a muffin was delivered to our table – one that we hadn’t ordered. When I returned it to the counter, there was a little confusion as to who had ordered the muffin and therefore which coffee order had to go to which table.

My coffee was served in a tulip cup – which was good – with a crema that was OK without being fantastic. The flavour was good without being outstanding.

As I have said in other locations, if you are living locally and looking for somewhere where you can catch up with friends, you could do worse than Ground Zero. If you are looking for really good coffee, you could certainly do better.

 

Address: Shop 1, 34 Murradoc Road
Suburb: Drysdale 3222
Web Site: www.groundzerocafe.com.au
Telephone: 03 5251 5100
Open: Seven days per week
Price: $4.00
Coffee Suppliers: Unknown
Headline: Attached to an industrial estate in Drysdale, it seems very popular with the local school mums but just lacks the atmosphere of what I like in a coffee shop. Coffee was satisfactory.
Coffee Rating: Three and a half stars

Lola’s Kitchen

 

This is the second incarnation of the cafe at the Boom Gallery in the funky river-end precinct off Pakington Street. The previous cafe Dirty Rascal has been replaced by Lola’s Kitchen and on today’s effort, that’s a little disappointing. The venue is pretty much the same as it was (maybe slightly larger due to a realignment of the counter) but there was a fair gap between the four and a half star coffee I had when I was there last time and today’s. Today’s was served in an unusual shaped cup – similar to a cappuccino cup from a volume perspective but the traditional shape – and as is often the case, this led to a broken crema and a coffee that cooled down too quickly. The crema covered around half of the top surface, which is really disappointing.

The flavour wasn’t bad by any means but it just wasn’t what I had expected when I met a business associate there, still expecting to find the previous, excellent, 4.5 star standard of coffee that was served back in June 2015.

 

Address: 11 Rutland Street
Suburb: Newtown 3220
Web Site: www.boomgallery.com.au/about/cafe/
Telephone: 0448 950 784
Open: Six days per week (closed Sundays)
Price: $4.00
Coffee Suppliers: Unknown
Headline: A satisfactory coffee in a really good location. Great opportunity to grab a coffee before or after a visit to the various exhibits in the Boom Gallery.
Coffee Rating: Three and a half stars

Flying Brick Cider Co

 

Sometimes, the cards fall in your favour when a coffee review is being done and so it was when I visited The Flying Brick Cider Co at Wallington this morning. One of the Melbourne radio stations was broadcasting live from the venue and so, a special effort had been made to make everything look fantastic. To add to that, the Bellarine had turned on one of those absolutely perfect days – 25 degrees by lunchtime, light breeze, not a cloud in the sky.

Call it an unfair advantage if you like but there it is …

The coffee itself was served in one of those unusually shaped Julius Meinl cups that I’ve described before. It was well-presented with a rich crema and a much better taste than I remember in other places using their coffee. I have noticed a tendency for the Julius Meinl coffee to be very strong which may turn some consumers away from their blends but this morning’s was pretty much bang on.

If you are looking for a cup of coffee on the Bellarine on a beautiful day, you could do a lot worse than to head for the Flying Brick Cider Co – you might even find the time to sample their cool drinks as well.

 

Address: 1251 – 1269 Bellarine Hwy
Suburb: Wallington 3222
Web Site: www.flyingbrickciderco.com.au
Telephone: 03 5250 6577
Open: Seven days per week
Price: $4.00
Coffee Suppliers: Julius Meinl
Headline: Obviously their coffee is an afterthought on their menu but all in all a most enjoyable cup of coffee. Not sure how much the outstanding location and weather contributed to my decision!
Coffee Rating: Four stars

Cafe Bocca

 

Cafe Bocca is one of those cafes that’s really hard to explain. It certainly wouldn’t market itself as a sophisticated coffee experience. It would never call itself “a little piece of Melbourne here in Geelong” (and that’s a very good thing). Even the food offerings are less than what you would describe as gourmet … BUT, Cafe Bocca is a really nice place to go for coffee.

In a previous life, I spent a lot of time travelling around regional Australia and every town and city has at least one Cafe Bocca – a place where you can get a nice sandwich and cake, with a nice cup of tea of coffee for a reasonable price. Located over the road from the hospital, I suspect that many outpatients and hospital visitors prefer this place to other locations around it’s immediate vicinity.

To be honest, the coffee was satisfactory more than anything else – wrong cup size, virtually no crema but tasted OK, notwithstanding. That said, I’d certainly head back to Cafe Bocca for other aspects of the experience.

 

Address: 281 Ryrie Street Street
Suburb: Geelong 3220
Web Site: www.facebook.com/Café-Bocca-228065730629103/
Telephone: 03 5222 4930
Open: Five days per week – closed weekends
Price: $3.80
Coffee Suppliers: Santa Rosa
Headline: Not the best coffee I’ve tasted but just a really comfortable place for lunch. Ideal spot for a bite to eat if you are visiting someone at the hospital.
Coffee Rating: Three stars