The rivalry that was so big it created an entire city….

Tom vs. Jerry

Tweety vs. Sylvester 

Seinfield vs. Newman

I think you’re getting the theme here, Melbourne versus Sydney has been a thing since we battled for the title of capital city, only for that to fall through and Canberra to be born – the city equal distances between.

Thats how competitive we are! So much so, the stubbornness created an entire city!

So naturally, when I jumped off the plane I was sceptical about what I was going to find. The facts I had been told were:

“There is absolutely no bar scene here,”

“They have the same cafe scene as Melbourne… circa 2002.”

(May I note, these quotes came from a recent expat from Melbourne now relocated to the sandy shores of Sydney)

I like to think of myself as quite an open minded person, so I decided to do what any other like minded individual would do, and I went on a mission to discover the truth / went on a 4 day bender.

The results:

The Grounds of Alexandria, The Potting Shed

“They have the same cafe scene as Melbourne… circa 2002.”

Kingfish Sashimi and Smashed Avo on freshly baked seeded bread...

The Grounds of Alexandria: Kingfish Sashimi and Smashed Avo on freshly baked seeded bread…

Not only was this cafe amazing, it was an institution. The Ground of Alexandria is a multifaceted establishment complete with a restaurant, bar, a parrot named Fluffy and a pig named Kevin Bacon. Thats right, they have their own pig named Kevin friggin’ Bacon. The kicker, I was too hyped about Fluffy I never got a chance to meet the little piggy – rumour has it that a jealous customer stole Mr Bacon and he was later found in Victoria. Yup, I told you the competition ran deep.

It wasn’t just Fluffy that kept me distracted, it was the wheelbarrow bonfire in the car park that was lit and equipped with marshmallows and skewers for anyone interested. It was the amazing details of signage which included puns such as have a “good thyme”. It had zero faults. Not only that, but heres where the real kicker comes…

“There is absolutely no bar scene here,”

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DIY Bourbon Old Fashioned, complete with smoked cinnamon, maple syrup and bacon.

No bar scene you say? Well, I hate to come across like a traitor, but I found the above pretty damn amazing. And then…

An Espresso Martini Flip made with fig liquer and wait for it... a quail egg. #canteven

An Espresso Martini Flip made with fig liquer and wait for it… a quail egg. #canteven

An espresso martini flip made with a quail egg!? Some would say too much, I would say, well done. They literally got a stack of post its, wrote down every little bit of information about them on them, then took those 100,000 post its and made it so it was 10x better and cooler than anything I’ve ever witnessed. Or thats what I assume must of happened, because they literally had no faults.

Note, this is just ONE place I visited (maybe several times) on my four days of intensive research/drinking. I still haven’t even covered all the Bloody Marys! However I decided it’s best to go one step at a time, so I’ll leave that till next time.

For those playing at home:

The Grounds of Alexandria, 2 Huntley St, Alexandria NSW || http://thegrounds.com.au/ ||

Prost!

Four reasons to swap your single origin piccolo latte (You’re welcome)

Muharam Cafe, Little Drippa Espresso Martini w/ Pistachio, Goji & Dark Chocolate coated marshmallow.

Muharam Cafe, Little Drippa Espresso Martini w/ Pistachio, Goji & Dark Chocolate coated marshmallow.

As cafes have now become the foundation of every social catch up, business meeting, hipster office and instagram post – your drink order has become more important than ever. If god forbid you accidentally forget to ask from what region your single origin cold drip coffee comes from before ordering, you may be mistaken for as lazy.

But as you read that last sentence, I think we both know that is a load of sh..ugar. The reality is no one really cares. We order for the caffeinated buzz, and not the slight sharpness of plum undertones brought on only by arabica beans harvested on a full moon 16.3kms from the equator.

So! On that note, here a four lovely venues to get your morning going!

|| Espresso Martinis

Espresso Martinis are in fact as equally balanced in stimulant & depressant as the yin and yang tattoo on your baristas forearm. So if you wanted to have a truly productive morning, I suggest you skip your yoga class and order one of these and I personally guarantee a morning of socialising, self-awareness, and brainstorming (which from experience may lead to you and your best friend drunkenly booking a trip to Europe…) Passports at the ready!

Dr Morse Bar & Eatery

274 Johnston Street, Abbotsford, www.drmorse.com.au

Oscar Cooper

160 Greville Street, Prahran, www.oscarcooper.com.au

St Ali

12-18 Yarra Place, South Melbourne, www.stali.com.au

Muharam

97 Burwood road, Hawthorn, www.muharam.com.au

Detailed photos and reviews to come in due time…

Prost!