Brisbane Cafe Review: Coffee Hit Specialty Coffee, Carindale

The idea of a gas fired commercial coffee roaster pumping out the aroma of roasting coffee in the heart of the foodcourt of a major shopping centre sounds pretty crazy. But that’s what Coffee Hit Carindale promises. The roaster isn’t hooked up to roast yet. At the moment it’s a nifty piece of visual marketing for this cafe, and they’re currently (according to their shelves and someone I spoke to) serving up a blend roasted by Veneziano in Melbourne. They’ve got some beans sitting there spinning around but I’m withholding final judgment from this place till they start roasting their own goodies.

We were there a couple of days after opening, and it was packed.

The food is pretty good.

The coffee was, without question, the best coffee I’ve ever consumed… in a shopping centre. It wasn’t terrific, but if you’re doing the grocery shopping or the tiresome hanging out outside clothes shops, then it’s a welcome coffee hit. It wasn’t a bad drop. The milk was a little bubbly, rather than glossy. The flavour was good, but better on the second or third sips, and even in the aftertaste, than it was on the first taste. It dominated the front of my mouth, rather than filling every corner, it was fruity with hints of berry and a little bit of brown sugar and chocolate. Those were my tasting notes. But they are, like all tasting notes, essentially meaningless.

Brisbane Cafe Review: Igloo Espresso, Carina

This is my new local. We’re packing up and moving house in the next week. And I was thrilled to find this little watering hole, or the coffee equivalent, across the road from our real estate agent.

We were greeted by a friendly face – Kane, the tattooed barista formerly of the Corner Store Cafe, was pouring crisp shots using Clean Skin Coffee Co’s very own Saint blend (more on the Saint brand here) and a two group Synesso.


Image Credit: Igloo’s Facebook

The Igloo is a permanent coffee cart of sorts. It’s hard to describe in a manner that does the facility justice. It’s a tiled circle. Designed, apparently, by the same team that put together the Corner Store. It offers a bit of seating, under umbrellas, that isn’t great on a hot day like today. But situated, as it is, by a busy bus stop on Old Cleveland Road, and next to a gym, its in a prime location for commuters and those working in a busyish retail strip.

It’s not going to win points on food or comfort – but the coffee is prepared with love and expertise. Kane is behind the machine most days, with his signature driver’s cap and rosetta tattoo. Speaking of which. Rosetta Tattoo would be a funny name for a coffee band… People who are passionate about coffee are, almost always, prepared to spend a while chatting about their passion.

And the cup lived up to the chat. My flat white was rich in flavour, sweet and full of character, I’d almost say “zesty” but not in a citrusy way, just interesting in all corners of the mouth, with a milk chocolate type finish. But lets face it – tasting notes are semi-meaningless. It nice and sweet. My wife’s Piccolo was described as being on the “nutty” end of the spectrum. And that’s a good thing. There were no dramas with temperature, no traces of over extraction, or over roasting. And with the bus stop nearby, I’ll be frequenting this little tiled igloo on my way to college this year.

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