Expensive fit-outs, acclaimed chefs and ambitious, restaurant-style menus often underpin new Sydney cafes these days. Daniel Karaconji’s Double Tap isn’t any of that. “I just want to keep it simple,” he says.

And simple he has. In Sydney’s competitive cafe scene that approach might seem unwise, but if the brief of Double Tap is to service the locals with decent coffee and inexpensive but high-quality food, it nails it.

Before opening Double Tap in the backstreets of Marrickville, Karaconji was head roaster at Coffee Alchemy. Here he’s using Wetherill Park’s Panorama to supply the blend for the cafe’s milk coffees, and for those who like it black, there’s a large and varied selection of rotating single origins. “Eventually we’d like to get into roasting. We have the DA [development application] approval, we just need to save for the equipment,” says Karaconji.

Karaconji has less experience in the kitchen than with the coffee side of things, and has recruited his partner Elizabeth for assistance. “[The food isn’t] too chef-y, [we’re] just using good products and good ingredients,” he says.

That equates to a menu of sandwiches – like ham, cheese and salad – and za’atar bread pockets stuffed with tomato, mozzarella and mint. Produce is from Shane Roberts, Penny Fours, Two Providores and Napoli Food and Wines. There are croissants, pastries and cakes made by Karaconji’s’s mum, often including a plum torte and a lemon yoghurt cake. All sandwiches are $10 and under, the only thing more expensive is the seasonal salad bowl.

The reason he can keep costs low is cheap rent – the cafe is hidden in a back alley – and he did the cafe’s design and fit-out in-house. You’d never guess it, though. It’s slick and sunny and has a large feature wall with a botanical mural done by Karaconji’s artist brother Alex. “We sourced everything locally, did the measuring ourselves, painted it. We paid Alex in doughnuts,” says Karaconji.

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Double Tap Coffee
54/56 Smith Street, Marrickville
0404 475 430

Mon to Fri 6am–3pm Sat 7am–1pm