Best Cafes in South Melbourne

Updated 1 month ago

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In South Melbourne you really can’t beat the main attraction – the market. Between all the wandering around, tasting samples and lugging bags of shopping, after a certain amount of time you’ll need to find coffee and a filling breakfast. There’s a lot to choose from in this charming, leafy suburb. Here’s the best of a brilliant bunch.

  • The busy headquarters of a growing coffee empire.

  • This daytime hangout from the team behind north-side favourite Florian offers fresh sandwiches, nourishing salads, a next-level mushroom congee, and a no-fuss takeaway menu.

  • This cheery cafe offers up a playful brunch menu, grab-and-go pastries and hot coffee from Dukes. Its creative brunches might include Reuben sangas (with an unexpected combo of kangaroo pastrami and pineapple sauerkraut) or cured salmon mille-feuille on a New York-style bagel.

  • This is one of the cafes responsible for elevating chef-prepared breakfasts and brunches to the same level of respect as lunches and dinners. And, even after changing hands a few years back, it’s still one of the best places in town for a morning meal.

  • Kuu's owners are a Japanese couple with a love for Melbourne, so you'll see influences from both places on display here. They shows up in the design, which is clean and minimalistic. They also appear on the menu, where traditional dishes are often given a local spin. There's a great range of salads and sandos to take away, too.

  • French-inspired all-day breakfast in South Melbourne.

  • A perennially popular sandwich shop in a former bakery with a Victorian frontage. It’s serving all the classic sangas, plus rotating specials (expect porchetta, roast beef or meatballs), potato salad and sodas.

  • Right next to Chez Dre, this dessert boutique is in the business of knockout petits gâteaux, macarons, biscuits and house-made gelato (with chocolate taps at the ready). It’s cakes and tarts also pull their own, especially the lemon meringue number.

  • Your go-to coffee spot when you're doing the shopping.

  • Cafe number six for one of the city’s favourite coffee roasters.

  • Nab a spot on the balcony and order the famous Reuben sandwich.

  • A modest, homely cafe where the wholesome food is as warm as the service.

  • The tiny coffee shop with big ambitions.

  • Israeli share platters and pita pockets (and yes, the chef is left-handed).

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  • Wood-fire sourdough pizza is the star at this wine bar, which pours natural wine, wild brews and coffee. Plus, grab sourdough rolls for lunch loaded with fillings such as mortadella, or a fancy omelette on the weekend.

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  • Meals fresh from South Melbourne Market.