Mon – Fri 7am – 5pm
Sat – Sun Closed
Coffee: Toby’s Estate Brunswick Blend (houseblend), Single Origin
“There is no denying that the majority of our coffee consumption occurs within the Melbourne CBD. With a saturation of established coffee shops, to make an impact on the scene is tough. Yet with this challenging landscape, fantastic decor and high quality coffee shops are making their mark all over the CBD. It seems the big factor for success is location, location, location. Whether it’s Market Lane Coffee expanding location to include across the street from Queen Victoria Market or the Grain Store opening in the once-dead side of Flinders Lane. Toby’s Estate has branched away from their Brunswick home to enter the CBD. Setting up shop in another unexciting part of Flinders Lane, it brings much-needed excitement to the location.
Toby’s Estate sits slightly elevated above the walking path of what was once a dated pastry shop. The beautiful aspect to this cafe can be appreciated by walking through 333 Collins Street foyer (famously know for it breath-taking dome) and seeing the clean, white light room filled with metallic chairs and indoor plantation. Milling about are patrons full of positive energy, providing a real sense that the grass is green inside Toby’s Estate.
We had arrived early for a Friday morning breakfast session before returning back to our swiveling work chairs. Given the early start, coffee were quickly ordered and delivered. Going for the Single Origin Ethiopian Yirgacheffe blend in a long black [$3.70], was a terrific start. There was a zesty flavour in the back of my palate, with an overall lovely, fruity and crisp flavour. The coffee head did dissipate quickly, but this didn’t affect the coffee quality.
Menu options are tailored towards the busy CBD crowd, with predominately simple light dishes that ensure a quick turnaround from order to delivery. With a number of excellent menu choices, the decision was tough, but I decided on the Wild mushrooms sautéed with caramalised eshallots on soy and quinoa toast, wilted spinach, poached egg and truffle oil [$14.50]. The mushrooms were sautéed well. They were perfectly soft and moist without feeling like I had swallowed a barrel of oil. The bread and wilted spinach worked well as a base and with the perfect poached egg, made for a taste but simple dish.
The needs of a CBD cafe in comparison to an inner suburb are completely different. They are effectively two separate markets. Toby’s Estate CBD cafe demonstrates and recognises this. We all love a great coffee, however most of us don’t want a massive meal to weigh us down at work. The space at Toby’s Estate is the perfect escape from the mundane office decor, providing fabulous coffee and meals that are satisfying, preparing us for another day at work.”
“It was a cold and chill week night when I and my partner G were making our way to Huxtaburger in the city. Rain had slicked the roads which were reflecting the city lights as we made our way down Flinders Lane in search of a delicious burger to fuel us for our journey home. It was then that I noticed a new space – lit up in pristine white and garnished with greenery, the new Toby’s Estate flagship cafe had opened and it was a sight to see amongst the of the old architecture.
The journey of Toby’s Estate goes back to the garage of Toby Smith’s mum from Woolloomoo in 1998. The founder and director of the company started roasting his own beans in a 5kg roaster and has since traveled the world – with his mission to source and roast the best beans for us to enjoy.
Carly, Mr LB, G and myself all decided to give the new venue a try ASAP, organising brunch before the week was out. I started off with a Single Origin Ethiopian Yirgacheffe in a double espresso and it woke me up like a punch to the face. It was full-bodied and very tangy, with hints of citrus and the sourness of yogurt. It was really very beautiful and I was surprised, as I’d never had a Toby’s Estate coffee so good in the past.
I was in the mood for something warming and opted on the Baked eggs on kasundi, Timboon organic yogurt served with sourdough [$12.50]. I thought the price was extremely reasonable and the quality of the food that came out was at a high standard.
The yogurt on my dish was lovely and fresh without being too sour. The sourdough was crisp and perfect for cutting off and dunking into the kasundi. The sauce below the surface of this dish was made of a rich tomato flavour. There were hints of turmeric that shot through which I really enjoyed.
G had the Espresso maple bacon with Devon Meadow free range eggs poached on sourdough [$14.50]. I had a cheeky sample of his dish and thought the bacon had a beautiful sweet-and-savoury combination that was simply divine. YUM!
Carly had ordered the Smashed avocado with yarra valley dairy feta, pepitas, fresh lemon and olive oil on sourdough [$12.50]. Her dish looked the most appealing to me out of everyone’s dishes, however, she felt that the dish was missing something salty to balance out the sourness of the lemon used in the smashed avocado.
Toby’s Estate delivers a beautiful place to brunch on the barren side of the CBD. Whilst brunch locations such as Hardware Societe and Manchester Press are well established on the Lonsdale Street side of town, it’s refreshing to have some different options. I thought the experience here was great and look forward to visiting them again.”
Final Thought: “A refreshing brunch option for the Flinders Street side of the city”