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Best breakfasts in Sydney
You're tired. You're groggy. You haven't been to bed yet. Here's where to pick yourself up around Sydney's inner city perimeter
Popping two slices of bread in the toaster, slapping on some butter and Vegemite is still fairly standard when it comes to a Sydney breakfast.
But it’s not all yeast extract and Weet Bix in the cafés around town.
What used to be a quick meal to fill a gap has turned into a fine, affordable art in Sydney’s café evolution.
Toasted Muesli at Clipper Café
If you're riding a bike to a quaint breakfast café after a stroll in the vintage markets, Clipper Café in Sydney’s inner west village is down your alley.
What started as a random idea of mounting a bicycle on the wall, has led to a full-fledged collection of two-wheeled, three-dimensional wallpaper.
Pot plants hang in this green shed on Glebe Point Road, but arguments usually rage over who sits under the bicycle. But everyone gets free WiFi.
The toasted muesli ($9) packs serious taste: pistachio, bran flakes, dried pineapple and honey-coated oats provide a contrast of gooey, crisp, flaky textures. It's served with yogurt and mixed berries.
For a bit of dizziness to a balanced breakfast, order the Tunisian date syrup on the side. It's perfumed rosewater scent balances the sweet bowl.
Clipper Café, 16 Glebe Point Road, Glebe, +61 04 2561 9742. Breakfast hours: 7 days, 6 a.m.–6 p.m.
Ricotta pancakes at Number 9
Kings Cross doesn’t have the best reputation going for itself when it comes to sober dining.
If you steer away from the red lights and clubs, however, and pass on the greasy deluge of cheeseburgers and kebabs, good taste is only a few blocks away.
At this gentleman’s club-inspired café, sipping on a Manhattan can seem more fitting than coffee. But it’s the earthy aroma of Brazilian coffee beans that brings queues of customers.
The soft and fluffy ricotta pancakes ($14.50) with sour essence of grainy rhubarb and a thin layer of light vanilla cream, then topped with maple syrup, is an absolute hangover cure after a night out in the infamous Cross.
Number 9, 9 Ward Avenue Potts Point; +61 (0)2 9331 1399. Breakfast hours: Tuesday–Sunday 7 a.m.–3 p.m., www.cafeno9.com
Boiled eggs at Earth Food Café
If you don’t mind huddling around a communal table whilst being surrounded with fresh produce, bright flowers and wagging dogs, then the Earth Food Café could be the end of your hippie trek.
The unpretentiousness of this organic café serving gluten-free food in the middle of Bondi Beach’s fashion strip is refreshing.
The simple boiled eggs ($11) are made just the way you’d cook a good breakfast at home.
They're served on 100 percent rye toast and topped with (chemical-free, of course) avacado, tomato and goat’s cheese -- you can taste every ingredient.
There are no extra sauces: like all the earthy food, this stuff comes untarnished and wholesome.
Earth Food Café Bondi, 81a Gould Street, Bondi Beach, +61 (0)2 9365 5098. Breakfast hours: 7 days, 6:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m., www.earthfoodstore.com.au
Fooul Medammis at Hangry Café
This new café is located next to the Rozelle markets, making it popular amongst antique and secondhand book bargain-hunters. The Lebanese-inspired breakfast menu is why loafers dawdle into on weekends.
The flavor lies in the raw ingredients imported from the owner’s very own backyard in Lebanon.
From chickpeas to muffins, nothing comes out of tins or tetra packs.
Eating beans for breakfast might seem a bit common, but not when these fava beans are mixed with fresh tahini, garlic, lemon and topped with wedges of soft boiled egg ($15).
Naturally, everything comes with Lebanese bread. Or, for an Arabic take on a continental classic, the Parmesan French toast with sautéed mushrooms and spinach is worth a try.
Grab a few toothpicks of the free flourless brownies on your way out.
Hangry Café, Shop 4/595 Darling Street, Rozelle, +61 (0)2 9555 5434. Breakfast hours: 7 days, 7 a.m.–3 p.m.
Breakfast Tagine at Kazbah
The Moroccan lampshades, stringy Arabic music and Turkish coffee at Kazbah is a journey to the Middle East in the middle of stylish Balmain.
The mystification subsides as the food arrives. Pots of “traditional” tea aid digestion. You’ll need it!
Eating hardcore meat for breakfast is easier when it’s immersed in a bubble of authentic spices.
The Breakfast Tagine ($18.50) comes with five poached eggs. The avalanche of roasted vegetables includes spinach, roast capsicum, roast tomato and caramelized onion. It's finished with salted chunks of feta cheese -- all on a bed of flavorful lamb.
For herbivores, a vegetarian option is available with pumpkin.
Kazbah, 379 Darling St. Balmain (outlets also in Darling Harbour and Top Ryde, +61 (0)2 9555 7067. Breakfast hours: Tuesday-Saturday 8 a.m.-3 p.m., www.kazbah.com.au
Sweet corn fritters at Bills
When posh Sydneysiders and a fancy breakfast menu combine, you get a table at Bills.
The flag bearer of the original breakfast extravaganza, this contemporary café on Crown Street is the kind you show off to touring friends.
The sweet corn fritters ($18.50) come with golden, crisp edges every time. They're accompanied by tomato -- skinned to perfection -- and crunchy spinach leaves.
There are also enough greens to impress your mother. A side of creamy avocado salsa brings them to life.
If you want a second coffee, walk down Crown Street and take your people-watching pick at any number of cafés.
Bills, 359 Crown St., Surry Hills (Outlets also in Darlinghurst, Woollahra and Japan), +61 (0)2 9360 4762. Breakfast hours: Monday-Sunday, 7 a.m.–10 p.m. www.bills.com.au
Breakfast muffin at Café Giulia
There are no menus at quaint Café Giulia, so don’t sit down and play the waiting game. Just pick something from the extensive and colorful blackboard menu and order.
The alluring aromas of an open kitchen are enough to entice you into the tasteful and wallet-friendly variety of food that’s popular with city workers in a rush.
The poached egg breakfast muffin ($5.90) is one of the draw cards. It's served with chewy haloumi cheese and softened with bright yellow egg yolk. A thick slice of tomato and a lemon wedge add to the flavors.
It looks more like a burger than a muffin. And is just as satisfying.
Café Giulia, 92 Abercrombie St., Chippendale, +61 (0)2 9698 4424. Breakfast hours: Monday–Friday, 6:30 a.m.–5 p.m., Saturday-Sunday, 8 a.m.-3 p.m., www.cafegiulia.com