Ahead of opening a new outlet in Haymarket’s Darling Square, Anthony Ivey went a step further than most business owners: he moved into an apartment in the building next door. It meant he could be close to the third new Shortstop Coffee & Donuts (there's another in Barangaroo and Melbourne.

The new cafe sticks to what it does best: handmade doughnuts and coffee. Among the best sellers are the maple walnut and brown butter number, and the Earl Grey and rose. Aside from the traditional raised doughnuts, filled and cake doughnuts are also available, as well as a choux pastry cruller. (A raised doughnut is made with yeast and formed into a ring or a chubby, liquid-filled ball. The less-common cake doughnut is made without yeast, while the French cruller is a choux pastry piped in a circle, then fried.)

There are some standards on the menu (such as the cinnamon, cardamom and sugar raised) but there are also seasonal options. Heading into summer, expect to see more berries and jam. “We love to give our chefs the opportunity to create something new,” says Ivey. This includes festive flavours for every holiday imaginable. Chinese New Year saw lychee and pork floss, while Canada Day prompted maple bacon. Most recently, Thanksgiving was marked with a special batch of pumpkin spice and pumpkin pie doughnuts.

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Shortstop’s use of premium ingredients elevates its product above the mass-produced snacks most people associate with doughnuts. Heilala vanilla, butter from Saint David Dairy in Fitzroy, milk from Victoria’s Schulz Organic Dairy and Laucke flour from South Australia are all essential ingredients in the dough, which takes 15 hours to make.

Coffee is Shortstop’s other area of expertise, and it’s been a winner at Darling Square. “We sell a lot more coffee here than I expected,” says Ivey.

Market Lane is the bean of choice, which, like the dough, can be accompanied with Schulz organic milk. Ivey’s had years of experience working with specialty roasters, including Melbourne’s Auction Rooms, Seven Seeds and Market Lane, so he knows how to get the most from the coffee machines.

At 23-square-metres, the new spot is quite literally a hole in the wall. Even so, architectural firm Smith & Carmody’s design makes it feel spacious and open. The outdoor seating helps, too. “We don’t have room for a mixer in Darling Square,” says Ivey, “so what we do is we make the raw dough in Barangaroo and deliver it here daily.”

Shortstop Coffee & Donuts
15 Little Hay Street, Haymarket

Mon to Fri 8am–8pm
Sat & Sun 9am–8pm


This article first appeared on Broadsheet on December 4, 2019. Menu items may have changed since publication.