Sassafras Canteen

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outdoor area
open early

Sassafras Canteen has been around since 1997. In Paddington, where rents are high, this is quite an accomplishment.

Sassafras has long been known as the place to go for a lazy weekend brunch, and more recently added an ever-changing canteen lunch option to the midweek menu.

You can choose from a range of salads, soups, wraps and sandwiches, and there’s a takeaway option as well. The coffee comes from Fortitude Valley company Bear Bones Espresso.

The decor is eclectic and the courtyard out the back is a real prize. It’s leafy and private, and dogs are welcome. To drink there's brews from Green Beacon and Newstead Brewing, plus a short wine list.

Co-owner Peter Clarke (his wife Maureen Mullins is the other owner) puts the longevity down to a willingness to evolve, but hadn’t always planned to be a restaurateur. Originally a bookmaker, he found himself in business with a friend, a woman he’d been seeing. The woman went overseas and he found himself at the helm.