Backstreet Christmas Day 3: Local Tea & Coffee

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When I was growing up, the kettle was always boiling, especially in the holiday season – people dropped in for a cup of tea, friends came over for playdates, and I assume mum and dad drank their fair share of coffee to deal with our school holiday enthusiasm. Cups of tea and mugs of coffee brought people together over dining room tables and kitchen benches and patio couches, and not much has changed when I go home for Christmas as an adult. Whether you are looking for a gift for a cuppa-lover or just need a boost to finish your Christmas shopping, Brisbane’s leaf lovers and caffeine fiends can sort you out.


Coffee


Allpress Espresso

26 Wellington Rd, East Brisbane

This Woolloongabba café have great staff and great coffee, and I’ve bought their ground beans a few times. They roast exclusively using the Allpress Hot Air Roast Method, which supposedly dissipates the smoky, burnt taste caused by traditional drum roasting. Pickup your beans or grind from their lovely light-filled shop on the corner, or buy online.


Neighbourhood Coffee

15 Pedder St, Albion

The Neighbourhood Roastery team are trained in advanced coffee preparation from espresso, filter and other popular brewing methods, and there is plenty of retail coffee to take home and a large range of brewing accessories for home coffee enthusiasts.


Blackstar Coffee

3/62 Didsbury St, East Brisbane

A team of talented coffee professionals roasting and brewing in Brisbane since 2007. You can buy coffee, brewing equipment, and coffee subscriptions via their website, or visit them in person. Plus, every kilo of coffee sold contributes to planting 3 trees via Trees.org and Landcare Australia!


Fonzie Abbott

40 Fox St, Albion

Fonzie Abbott has been a Brisbane-based specialty coffee roaster and wholesaler since 2010, and over the years has grown to include a brewery and distillery, making it a “one-stop libation shop”. All Fonzie Abbott beverages are brewed and distilled on site at their Fox Street headquarters


Ezicaf Solutions

A family-run business built on a passion for quality, sustainable, easy coffee, Ezicaf Solutions is the Australia and New Zealand importer and distributor for the Coffee-for-One Gold Filter – the environmentally-friendly alternative to the coffee capsule (pod) and paper coffee filters.

I bought a gold filter earlier in the year and can honestly say it’s been amazing – two simple pieces (three including the lid), super quick brew time, great coffee every time, and the easiest clean-up: just rinse it and pop it on the sink to dry. Would definitely recommend as a gift for those who love a good cuppa but aren’t big on mess, or fiddling around with complicated devices.


Q Roasters

44 Wolverhampton St, Stafford 

Q Roasters sources coffee from producers that endorse Organic, Fair Trade Organic and Rainforest Alliance practices, or from Estates which support sustainable agriculture. Their commitment to purchasing these green coffees reinforces their dedication to the environment and the farmers whilst providing customers with a superior quality coffee. 

You can purchase coffee, tea, and brewing equipment via the website, or visit their roastery and café in Stafford.


Foster & Black

In 2015 Andrew Foster & Harrison Black launched their first hole-in-the-wall espresso bar in Maroochydore. Now, they are brewing specialty coffee in five locations across South East Queensland, and I’ve found their staff to be super knowledgeable and friendly, if you’re not quite sure what you’re after or you’re looking to try something new.

Find them in the Brisbane Myer Centre on Queen Street, at Westfield in Chermside, Carindale, Garden City, and Coomera, and Pacific Fair on the Gold Coast. You can also buy coffee, brewing gear, grinders, accessories, and even one-on-one basic barista training via their website.


Bear Bones

68 McLachlan Street, Fortitude Valley

Opening in late 2013, Bear Bones have a range of blends and single origins, sourcing their green beans from around the world to their roastery and café in Fortitude Valley. They’ve launched an online shop this year, or you can buy direct from the experienced staff on location.


The Single Guys

4/2051 Moggill Rd, Kenmore

3/201 Charlotte Street, Brisbane City

With locations in Kenmore and the CBD, The Single Guys is a specialty coffee company born and bred in Brisbane. With a focus on sophistication, character and integrity, they seek to source and supply the finest single-origin coffee and related products to their customers.


Cleanskin Coffee

Unit 121/193 South Pine Rd, Brendale

Established in 2008, Cleanskin is a roaster, espresso bar and coffee destination located 30 minutes north of Brisbane. They source green coffee direct from ethical and sustainable farms around the globe, roast them to develop their complex flavours, and cup the coffee for quality control and consistency before it reaches their customers. You can purchase coffee, not-coffee (tea, chocolate, syrups, etc), equipment, and merchandise via their website.


Black Sheep Coffee

109 Norman St, Woolloongabba

Open seven days and always experimenting with new brew methods and beans, Black Sheep have an online store and also offer a coffee subscription service, delivered to your door and with a choice of permanent or seasonal blends, or single origins roasted specifically for either filter or espresso.


TheMonday

Not a coffee shop, but coffee experts and appreciators. TheMonday was started by Tyler Hood and Alex Lawton as a way to explore and celebrate their love for specialty coffee and has since grown into a community stretching across Australia and beyond. Through carefully curated events and collaborations (like last year’s fantastic The Lanes Coffee Festival in Fortitude Valley) TheMonday aims to bring the best of specialty coffee culture to those who are yet to discover it, and nurture them through to feeling comfortable and excited by the growing world of specialty coffee. They’ve also created a handy little ‘Specialty Coffee Guide’ which I use as both a bookmark and a guidebook for good coffee – find it on their social media.

This year, during lockdown, they started Shared Brewing as a daily live event on Instagram and this has transformed into the Shared Brewing podcast – find it on your podcast apps or watch it here on YouTube.


Tea


Tour de Tea

Shop B, 88 Merthyr Road, New Farm

A loose leaf tea emporium in New Farm run by sisters Amy and Hannah. Dedicated to improving sustainability in the tea industry, Tour de Tea is the first tea store to offer zero waste options for customers, and reusable tasting cups instore. Tour de Tea offers over 60 varieties of artisanal tea, each hand packaged by Amy and Hannah with its own specific story, many drawing upon familiar aspects of Brisbane’s scenery and culture. The store itself is built from recycled materials including the doors and windows of an old Queenslander home.

Tea Tribe

Small batch and hand-blended in Byron Bay, Tea Tribe uses 100% certified organic tea and herbs from micro to medium farms and packaging that is 100% is recyclable and biodegradable, and also from Byron. They have green, black, chai, and herbal teas as well as tea ware, with a focus on aligning flavour with restorative properties.


The Steepery

Founded by Kym Cooper, The Steepery is a Brisbane tea retailer and wholesaler curating a selection of pure leaf teas from a variety of the regions around the world. They also operate a Brisbane tea school that provides structured, yet flexible, learning opportunities to make true tea approachable and accessible, and regularly host tea workshops and tea events to foster tea appreciation, tea knowledge and culture. You can find The Steepery through a number of Brisbane partners as well as online.


The Tea Centre

Stocking lots of cute tea cups, pots, and other accessories in addition to their variety of loose-leaf tea, The Tea Centre have been serving Aussie tea lovers since 1993. With a commitment to responsible sourcing, they carry ethically sourced teas that empower small farmers in tea producing regions and encourage sustainable and organic farming practices by supporting worker-owned plantations. You can purchase on their website or at one of their local stores – located in Brisbane Arcade on Queen Street Mall, Westfield Chermside, and Robina Shopping Centre.


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