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66 Espresso

Home > Adelaide > Animals and Wildlife | Art | Cafes | Coffee | Quirky
by Jenny Rossiter (subscribe)
Writer, photographer, educator, explorer of places new, with a passion for adding fun back into life.
Published July 2nd 2016
Update March 20th 2018
This venue is permanently closed and no longer trading.

Great Place to Arrive after a Drive
What do a Tattoo Parlour, Vape Store and Lolly Shop have in common with a Café?

66 Espresso, Frontyard Tattoo, cafe, coffee, Vape store, Lolly shop, #weekendnotes


Come to 66 Espresso and find out. This is one head turning café! The front window may have been created by a bonsai garden fan. Taxidermy birds fly overhead. The timber cabinet to one side resembles an old fashioned lolly shop.

66 Espresso, Frontyard Tattoo, cafe, coffee, Vape store, Lolly shop


Menus are on the front counter, but the tables and chairs are all downstairs. Downstairs is divided into several sunken rooms. The moody lighting suggested a pool table would be over the next half wall, but each area contained individual and unusual seating. The ones made from tractor seats were quite appealing.

66 Espresso, Frontyard Tattoo, cafe, coffee, Vape store, Lolly shop, nudes


It is perhaps not the place to bring your grandmother, due the number of up and down stairs and prevalence of nudes watching from the walls; not to mention the tattoo parlour next door; but blokes will love the strong sense of masculine emitting from all the furnishings.

66 Espresso, Frontyard Tattoo, cafe, coffee, Vape store, Lolly shop


If you have been brought to 66 Espresso by your bloke, there are other interesting birds to look at. Majestic owls and Australian native birds, including two endangered species, feature in glass cases and bird cages.

66 Espresso, Frontyard Tattoo, cafe, coffee, Vape store, Lolly shop, nudes


Mason jar lights, iron gate tables, the crocheted rug from grandma's house - there is plenty to catch the eye while the coffee is being brewed.

66 Espresso, Frontyard Tattoo, cafe, coffee, Vape store, Lolly shop


The chosen winter drinks - mocha and hot chocolate - were warmly received and savoured. Little chocolate chip biscuits on the side lifted the happiness factor.

66 Espresso, Frontyard Tattoo, cafe, coffee, Vape store, Lolly shop


Our brunch of a 66 Squamlet Roll (No, I'm not explaining. Visit and find out for yourself.) and Hawaiian Doorstop were simple, tasty and filling. Other choices included Big Breakfast, BLT, Muffins, Wraps, Rolls, Croissants, Pancakes and Waffles.

While the clever discoverer of this quaint curiosity went to pay the bill, I followed another flight of internal stairs down to Frontyard Tattoo. Not to submit my skin as a canvas to one of the 10 full-time tattoo artists that work there, but to browse the Sullen Art Collective t-shirts.

66 Espresso, Frontyard Tattoo, cafe, coffee, Vape store, Lolly shop, Sullen Art Collective


Bypassing the upward flight of wooden stairs that lead to the creative business of Frontyard Tattoo, I returned to 66 Espresso counter. Here you can purchase e-cigarettes or old-fashioned lollies under the watchful gaze of several saucy ladies.

66 Espresso, Frontyard Tattoo, cafe, coffee, Vape store, Lolly shop, nudes


The Heritage building was built in 1855 by Dr G Bollen who operated as an undertaker and carpenter on these premises.

66 Espresso, Frontyard Tattoo, cafe, coffee, Vape store, Lolly shop, nudes


66 Espresso, Frontyard Tattoo, cafe, coffee, Vape store, Lolly shop


The current owner, Byron Drechsler, hand dug the underground eating area. He has united some of his favourite things in this quirky, nostalgic venue. Don't wait for your 66th espresso to visit. This café is a pipedream away from the mundane.

66 Espresso, Frontyard Tattoo, cafe, coffee, Vape store, Lolly shop


All photographs by JA Rossiter.
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Update March 20th 2018
66 Espresso has closed.
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Why? Come for the drive, stay for food, drink and fascinating conversation in this intriguing and unusual cafe.
When: 9.30 - 6.00pm everyday
Phone: (08) 8398 3555
Where: 66 Gawler Street, Mt Barker
Your Comment
Well, that's different!
by Paula McManus (score: 3|3172) 979 days ago
This is a fantastic place - and the iced coffees are the best in Adelaide!
by sharo (score: 1|21) 979 days ago
I agree Jenny this place is unquestionably blokey.
by Gayle Beveridge (score: 3|6160) 990 days ago
Congratulations winning first place.
by Bryony Harrison (score: 4|12245) 971 days ago
Congratulations on winning a first prize.
by Gayle Beveridge (score: 3|6160) 972 days ago
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