Take a break from shopping and relax in the Green House
GreenHouse Coffee & Co is a new café that has opened up in the Canberra Centre in the CBD, in the last days of November 2016. Canberra has been eagerly awaiting the opening of this café as it is a collaboration between Sasa Sestic, the owner of Ona Coffee House and Michael Rose, from Espresso Room - two coffee connoisseurs coming together in the one location. Ona Coffee grind their own Project Origin sustainable beans in their Fyshwick café and also supply Espresso Room with their own unique blend they use in their own café outlets. Both are successful Canberra businesses in their own right, but working together, GreenHouse is an exciting venture that is sure to be an instant success. At the time of writing, the café has only been open for a few days and already it has had rave reviews around the city. With much anticipation, our family went on the first Sunday breakfast to try it out for ourselves. Let's just say, we weren't disappointed.
Granola - house made spiced nuts, grains, oats and honey, with matcha yoghurt, strawberries, blueberries and banana ($11)
Firstly as you walk towards this café in the Canberra Centre shopping centre, it is smaller than expected, however as you walk through to the back of the café a spacious light-filled terrace opens up to the outside. Sunshine bathes the whole area in light and the "greenhouse effect" is created. With leafy trees in pots, hanging succulents, light pine coloured tables and low-lying stools to sit on, the effect is casual, modern and light. The view through the glass windows also looks down onto the busiest street in Canberra, Bunda Street, as well as down to the yellow umbrellas of the renowned Dobinson's Bakery below. When sitting on the airy terrace, it doesn't feel like you are in a shopping centre at all, more like a café in a secret garden.
The inside of the café has several tables in front of the arched white, "greenhouse" windows. From here you can watch the baristas at work and also the open kitchen, where the chefs expertly move past each other in a silent dance. There is also a line of seating down the other side of the windows, as well as the terrace area out the back. On our visit, the café filled up quickly and about a dozen people milled out of the front of the café waiting for their takeaway orders. A new favourite coffee venue has officially arrived in town.
The menu is reasonably priced, with all the delicious food options on the menu available all day until 2:30pm. Breakfast meals range between $6 - $17 and lunch meals between $11 and $21. Kids also get some good choices, with boiled egg and soldiers, pancakes and toasts to choose from. If you are just after something sweet, they also have an assortment of cakes, slices, breads and mini cheesecakes. See the photo of the menu below and click on "large image" to get a better view.
After much deliberation, we chose the Granola ($11) and Egg and Bacon Roll ($13) to enjoy with our much-anticipated coffee. Both were fresh and delicious, particularly the Egg and Bacon Roll with its tangy charred pepper chilli jam, Cobram Cheddar and soft ciabatta bun. This combination, as well as the runny egg yolk dripping out of the bun, made this a stand out winner.
Our breakfast was enjoyed with a Cappuccino and Latte in a coffee blend called Hitman, which is a " full bodied coffee with flavours of caramel, malt, nut and spice". If you enjoy Ona and Espresso Room coffee then of course you will love their coffee - it is creamy and with the right amount of intensity. If you are looking for coffee perfection, you will find it here.
Another feature of this café is the friendly staff, with a host to welcome people to the terrace and explain the process of going up to the counter to order. The smiling staff behind the counter provide efficient service and there is also another staff member walking around checking that no one is waiting too long for their orders. They excel in customer service, which was a refreshing sight to see.
After leaving GreenHouse, we found ourselves talking about our memorable café experience at different times for the rest of the day. The food, the service, the greenery and the large, round concrete tables with wooden inserts that we wish we could just "knock up" for our own home. With Christmas fast approaching at the time of writing, it is the ideal place to take a break from the Christmas shopping and unwind amongst the greenery.