’s Top Ten Cafes in Brisbane from 2012

This was an incredibly hard list to put together. Initially I was going to draw from the pool of every cafe in Brisbane – and I’ll still probably make a universal top ten as a page here – but I decided, instead, to put together a list of the top ten cafes I experienced for the first time in 2012. This means perennial favourites Dandelion and Driftwood aren’t being pitted against new favourites like Uncle Joe’s and Grindhouse – there’s a decidedly south side flavour to this list – as there was a north side flavour in 2011 – and this is undoubtably a result of our new geographic situation – but I’d say there has been a little bit more growth on this side of town this year.

One of the cafes doesn’t have an existing review here – because I forgot – but I’m a big fan of cafe number 10 (and its various iterations) – so will head back in in the next couple of weeks so that the review is based on a fresh experience.

Sadly, there’s been some shrinkage too – and the list became harder to put together because one of my favourites – Igloo – is no longer, and another little gem, Five Sugars, also closed its doors.

The top five was the hardest to split – in the end Grindhouse edged out Cleanskin and Dramanti because I went there more frequently, and I found Cleanskin and Dramanti incredibly difficult to split – but gave Cleanskin the nod in part as a homage to Igloo, and in part because I’ve enjoyed using their beans in our coffee cart at church. So it’s a product of a little bias – and shouldn’t be seen as indicative of superior quality.

These ten cafes are all doing great stuff – whether they’re roasting for themselves and others (Cup has had a stellar year on that front, according to this list…), or setting up shop where shops needed to be set up. I heartily recommend all of them.

I predict that a couple of places whose doors I didn’t darken this year, or who have just opened – LTD, and the new boys The Single Guys, in Kenmore, will make the list next year.

But now, without further ado, the 2012 top ten…


1. Uncle Joe’s Coffee House, Coorparoo
2. Cup Coffee’s Woolloongabba Roastery, Woolloongabba
3. Grindhouse Specialty Coffee, Stones Corner
4. Cleanskin Coffee Co, Brendale
5. Dramanti Artisan Roasters, Wynnum
6. Reverends Fine Coffee, Fortitude Valley
7. Black Sheep Coffee, Rocklea8. The Rogue Rennard, Paddington
9. The Little Prince, Woolloongabba
10. Brother Espresso, Bulimba

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