Time Out Sydney

The coffee is as good as ever at this Surry Hills stalwart, but what of the rest?

We sometimes feel like hamsters sweating it out on a wheel trying to keep up with the Surry Hills café scene. Just staying on top of new openings is enough to run ourselves ragged, and sometimes in the blur you can lose site of those coffee-and-egg hawkers who've been doing good work for a long time.

Single Origin Roasters is such a place. There's a reason this roastery/café on Reservoir Street is still one of lower Surry Hills' most popular spot for a pre-work brekky meeting. For starters, there's the coffee – no surprise, given the spot is HQ for the roasters supplying some of Sydney's top cafés. The team here serve a house blend they call Reservoir and it's a doozy: sweet, clean and light – perfect for a milk-based morning cup.

A great addition to the café has been the coffee bar next door. The Single Origins 'Sideshow' sits under a tattered 'Racks PTY LTD' sign and serves bags of beans, take-away coffee as well syphon coffee, cold-drop, aero-press and pour overs. You might want to try an "origin of the month" from the machine: they rotate four blends over each week of the month and on our visit are pouring floral and fruity 'Mutovu' from Rwanda.

Inside the café itself, it's still a squeeze along the windowed wall (we love the messy white-paint-on-black mural at the side), and it can be as hard as ever during pre-work peak hour to score a wooden stool on the footpath. But be patient (or prepared to squeeze) because they're doing some good brekky here.

The menu is frequently changing, but we're lucky enough to snap up a plate of creamed corn, black pudding, radish salad and chilli relish on our visit. The purée-like corn is a perfectly sweet foil to the radish, and we always like to see black pudding on a morning menu. A health-ified smoked trout kedgeree with quinoa in place of rice is also a winner.

If there's a flaw, it's the service. They know their coffee at Single Origin, and they're friendly enough when everything's going right – but we shouldn't be made to feel we're asking for the head of John the Baptist when we ask for some hot water to heat up the lukewarm tea we've been served.

Still, it's a minor glitch for a café that's been kicking goals in these parts for a while now. And maybe our waiter just hadn't had his Single Origin for the day.

Who won Restaurant of the Year 2015?

Updated on 4 Jul 2014.

By Joel Meares   |  

Single Origin Roasters details

60-64 Reservoir Street, Surry Hills 2010

Telephone 02 9211 0665

Price per person including drinks Up to $50

Open Mon-Fri 6.30am-4pm; Sat 7.30am-3pm

Single Origin Roasters website

Single Origin Roasters map

Report a problem with this page

Restaurants and bars nearby


43m - What Marc Aebi can’t stick between two pieces of bread probably isn’t...


61m - We want to let you all in on a little secret: we really, really like pad...


64m - Trying to get a table at Firedoor is like engaging in a battle of fire and...

More restaurants and bars nearby

Other venues nearby

Tractor Design School

4m - Tractor is a small independent design school, offerring courses in graphic...

Spence & Lyda

83m - One glance in the window of this luxe-modern showroom and you’ll fall in...

Big Hostel

107m - Travelling up and down the wide, brown land can be a lonely and exhausting...


123m - All the major Thai chefs in town get their ingredients here and it’s no...

More venues nearby
Melbourne Cup Cruise

Melbourne Cup Cruise

Slow and steady wins the race... Cruise your way into Melbourne Cup and celebrate race day on the boat that rocks

World on a Plate

World on a Plate

Variety is the spice of life... taste your way around the world as Sydney's most culturally diverse (and free!) food truck comes to Martin Place

NYE Above the Harbour

NYE Above the Harbour

Front-row seats to harbour fireworks, five-star dining, unlimited drinks, a dessert garden and an open-air dancefloor... this is how you do New Year's Eve in Sydney

Readers' comments, reviews, hints and pictures

Community guidelines

blog comments powered by Disqus

Get the Time Out weekend planner. Straight to your inbox, every Thursday.
Read more