New to Canberra, I love exploring this city and the secrets that it holds with my family.
Published January 9th 2017
Update July 24th 2017
This cafe has now moved to a larger space in the same building and is now called Courtyard by Milk Crate.
Pull up a crate and tuck into a Nutella muffin
Milk Crate is located in a busy office district in Canberra's CBD. I accidently stumbled upon this hip café when my daughter and I were walking through the city and we were intrigued by all the people milling out of the front. I have since learnt that this modern, industrial café has been open for over a year and has been an instant success with the local workers - especially for the takeaway coffee trade. Many people were standing around waiting for their takeaways, however we decided to sit on their milk crates with cushions and see why this café had become so popular. Our interest may also have had something to do with the lure of the "Nutella Muffins" they had advertised on their signage!
Modern decor and coffee worth waiting for at Milk Crate
The inside décor around the counter is attractive, with hanging pots, industrial lights, exposed brick, a curved timber slat roof and light streaming through the greenhouse-like ceiling. Grungy music plays in the background and the busy, upbeat ambience is just somewhere that you want to linger for awhile. As the café is positioned on the corner of the building, the main seating area spills outside onto the courtyard, with a large shady tree overhanging some of the tables making it a cool place to visit in Summer. They also have outdoor heaters positioned around the café, ready for winter.
The American and Turkish-inspired menu (which is a combination of both the owner and the chefs' heritage) is listed behind the counter, however it is also located inside the front cover of a small number of Dr Seuss books, that were left casually on a few tables. My daughter, of Dr Seuss age, thought it was the best thing she had ever seen at a café - until she took a bite into the Nutella muffin. We were both then in raptures at its Nutella topping and even more delicious Nutella filling discovered inside.
Milk Crate Menu (January 2016), located inside There's A Wocket In My Pocket, Dr Seuss
Everything on the menu looked particularly tasty, however I ordered the Smashy - Avocado, Persian Feta and Tomato Toastie ($9.50) and we shared a Banana and Muesli Smoothie. The Smashy instantly hit the spot. I wish I knew their secret of creating such a crunchy toastie - butter on both sides of the bread perhaps? The combination of the crunchy outside and soft and hot filling, made this a "wow" moment as soon as I crunched into it. If I worked locally, just like the dozens of people we saw there, I would also be making the pilgremage to Milk Crate for lunch - and I hadn't even tried the Drumroll roasters coffee yet!
The perfect breakfast or lunch combination - Smashy and Smoothie
Due to its location and mostly local office worker clientele, this café is only open between Monday to Friday, between 6.30am-4pm. If you work locally and are thinking of trying this café, it is located at the back of No.12 Moore Street, off Rudd Street (see Google map here). The wait for the coffee isn't long, with just one efficient barista calling out the orders at an alarming rate. Whilst there, why not take a Nutella muffin back to the office for that 3pm slump, however I wouldn't recommend eating it at your desk. The sticky and delicious Nutella gets everywhere and leaves a telltale chocolate smile around your mouth - as all good muffins should!