Until now, the pickings have been slim when it comes to getting a decent coffee in Melbourne’s Docklands. It’s a woeful state of affairs for locals and workers, especially in a city that prides itself on its abundance of quality brews.

So it’s no surprise that when Raj Atwal moved into the Docklands about a year ago, she quickly identified what was missing and decided to fix the problem herself. “It’s becoming really busy here, there are a lot of companies moving in and there’s a strong demand for coffee in the area,” she says.

The business owner, who has strong links to Melbourne’s hospitality community, worked her contacts and got in touch with barista and roaster Kris Wood, owner of Clement in South Melbourne.

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Atwal, who is the cafe’s sole owner, tapped into Wood’s coffee nous, enlisting him to supply the beans, baristas and advise on the type of coffee machine to buy. And it’s a beauty. The Spirit Triplette is a serious piece of machinery and one that perfectly complements the cafe’s house ‘Pony’ blend from Clement.

Atwal and Wood worked with Fitzroy-based interior design studio Wonder to create a space that acknowledged the location’s maritime history, but distinguished itself as a new arrival on the specialty coffee scene. The small cafe has all the hallmarks of a hip new spot: blonde timber, white vintage-esque chairs and a curved espresso bar sporting that impressive coffee machine.

Filtered coffee and a rotating single origin is also on offer, as are sweet treats from Matt Forbes and Candied Bakery.

If coffee isn’t your bag, you can’t go past the milkshakes. There are currently two flavours: a bitter yet sweet hazelnut-choc, and the apple crumble, which combines the flavour of the classic dessert with a creamy dash of English custard.

Halyard Coffee

760 Bourke Street, Docklands


Mon to Fri 7am–4pm