Ground Control Cafe
Ground Control Cafe is under the Circular Quay train station. It’s a small window-front shop casually serving the best coffee in the vicinity. Originally a photography store, owner Sue Zarea traded cameras for a “coffee-shop dream” and transformed the space in late 2014.
Catering to tourists and CBD workers, the space is small and relaxed. Industrial copper pipes run along the ceiling. The exposed-brick walls are brightened by feature filament bulbs. A black wall bench extends around the entire room for customers wishing to sit in.
The service area is minimal and open. Orders for Single Origin Coffee are taken on an iPad. The house blend is Killerbee; with flavours of dark-honey toffee and tropical fruit sweetness.
In the warmer months, cold drip is on offer, as is a frequently rotating single origin. Ground Control Cafe uses The Juggler; an auto-pouring milk pump that minimises milk and plastic wastage. It is also one of the few coffee shops offering macadamia milk, a nuttier and sweeter alternative to soy.
The glass cabinet counter is stocked with takeaway options such as poached chicken, and tuna and fennel sandwiches on focaccia bread; yoghurt and granola cups; and an array of gluten-free treats from Munja Bakehouse. There’re pastries from Luxe Bakery, and on the odd occasion, a vegan choc-mousse tart handmade by the barista.