Martin and Yang Sun are serious steam junkies. The husband-and-wife team’s love of cafe culture developed over their years in hospitality together, working at the likes of Green Refectory, Shinjuku and Platform 3. This passion ultimately led to the opening of Steam Junkies: a modern cafe big on coffee, with a fusion menu rooted in its owners’ Chinese heritage.
Beans are from Five Senses. Filter coffee comes through a Kalita Wave drip, while a Synesso Cyncra machine churns out espressos. Cold brew is popular in summer, served with an orange wedge. Non-coffee drinkers aren’t forgotten, with locally sourced Prana Chai, Mörk hot chocolate and Uji matcha lattes on offer. Try them with the housemade almond milk.
Menu highlights include the open Szechuan chicken sandwich, potato hash and salmon Benedict. But the Suns’ pride and joy is the braised ox tail served with longan fruit, smoked bacon and tofu puree. Plenty of gluten-free, vegetarian and vegan options are available too.
The cafe sits on the ground floor of eco-friendly apartment block, The Commons. Though right on the Upfield bike path and train line, it’s very cosy and not at all loud inside. The tidy space (which includes various plants, a communal table and two walls of French windows) was designed by Breathe Architecture, located right next door.