The Grounds of the City

7:00am - 9:30pm
500 George Street Sydney 2000


dine at the bar
good for groups
notable coffee

The Grounds of the CBD looks very expensive. The owners (as well as design team Acme & Co.) went all out; every part of the cafe-restaurant is immaculately detailed to make the whole scene look like the Orient Express.

The intricate timber joinery is accompanied by antiques (crockery, knick-knacks, books, furniture), plush illustrated menus, cast-enamel doors, custom-built stained-glass windows, copper bar equipment, tea delivered by trolley, mobile shoe-shiners, old-fashioned staff uniforms (and service, there’s even a permanent “coffee sommelier”) and a 1920s jazz soundtrack.

Just like the original in Alexandria, the most astonishing thing about this Grounds venue is how many different things this all-day venue does. On one visit you could try a coffee-tasting platter and some of the house cakes. On another, a cocktail and a plate of dashi oysters. Or you could do something completely different and sidle up to the bar for a burger, steak or half a roast chicken with a side of parmesan fries and cauliflower mac’n’cheese.

Dishes include snapper ceviche with buttermilk, hazelnut, apple and shreds of wakame. And the poke-like chirashi salad with brown rice, crisp cos, lime, cucumber, copious amounts of avocado and your choice of protein. Although the menu changes regularly.