8 of the Very Best Cafes in Collingwood

by Kate Stewart

Some of Inner Melbourne’s Very Best

Where are the best cafes in Collingwood? Is it the nearest cafe to your office? Are you lucky enough to have it right across the street? Or do you prefer to walk a few blocks and explore what the best cafes in Collingwood have to offer?

Collingwood is a grungy, tough, inner suburb of Melbourne. It’s loaded with so many cool cafes and great restaurants. Collingwood boasts some of the best cafes and night life Melbourne has to offer. A neighbourhood where something is happening 24 hours a day. Collingwood has a distinctive blend of old and new. With a truly independent vibe, Collingwood is loaded with so many places to check out.

Ask any local where the best cafe is, and you will get a different answer. It’s in Melbourne after all. Delicious coffee can be found all over town!. Amazing coffee shops hide down laneways and secret alleys. Collingwood is home to some of the best cafes and coffee roasters in Australia.  But who has the best Collingwood Cafe?   

Where is the best espresso bar? Who serves up a killer piccolo latte? Do cafes in Collingwood have a better recipe for chai latte than cafes in North Melbourne? What’s the answer to the age-old question; cappuccino verses latte?

I’m returning to my discovery of the best Melbourne cafes. This time, visiting cafes in Collingwood. I’m narrowing in on areas, cafes and coffee roasters to find exactly who and where it is. Will it be A Coffee? Will it be STREAT? Could it be Craft and Co.

I'm so excited. Let’s do this!

The Contenders

A Coffee


A Coffee Collingwood


Located at 30 Sackville Street Collingwood. A Coffee is all about transparency, clarity, and simplicity. With its white walls, floors and ceilings, A Coffee looks more like and Apple Store than a coffee roaster. Housed in a renovated Collingwood garage and known throughout Melbourne for roasting their beans more lightly. A Coffee has delicious coffee blends and the best recipe for matcha latte. You can also order one of their seasonal fresh juices or delicious pastries from Cobb Lane.

Craft and Co


Craft and Co. Collingwood


Located at 390 Smith Street Collingwood. Craft and Co is home to one of the best cafes in the city. It is also home to a restaurant, bar, distillery, brewery, bakery, bottle shop, deli, cheese-making room and coffee roaster. It’s such a great place to hang out on weekends. The kitchen pumps out simple breakfasts, and crowd-pleasing favourites such as pastas, burgers and wood-fired pizzas.

The Line Caught Barramundi is one of my favourite dishes at Craft and Co. It includes a smoked eggplant puree, fennel, pickled kohlrabi, white wine and nduja sauc. I always pair it with the Italian Slaw which is shaved cabbage, fennel, sumac, radish, baby capers, mint, parsley, lemon dressing and parmigiano reggiano. The Gnocchi Funghi is also next level. It is fresh made gnocchi, seasonal mushrooms and parmigiano reggiano.

For dessert my pick is the Orange and Rosewater Donuts – vanilla bean anglaise, ginger bread gin ice cream.  

Terror Twilight


Terror Twilight Collingwood


Located at 11 – 13 Johnston Street. Terror Twilight is all about balance and creating delicious, healthy options that make brunching and lunching simple and wholesome. A unique name for a cafe and right on trend for the area, the name is taken from an album by the indie rock band Pavement.

The food is absolutely delicious. There’s a roast-chicken sandwich with lemon mayo, frisee lettuce and pistachio, bacon and prune stuffing. Pair it with a skinny latte and I am in heaven. The breakfast sausage and fried egg, made with mince from Meatsmith and served on a house-made English muffin is one of my many breakfast favourites here.

As well as all-day breakfasts, the kitchen makes chicken or shitake and kombu broths. They come with a variety of pick-and-mix sides such as bok choy, enoki mushrooms, bean shoots or miso glazed eggplant. You can then add either grilled Tasmanian salmon, poached chicken or fried Sichuan marinated tofu. Their coffee is from Wide Open Road. There is also an array of healthy drinks including smoothies and cold-press juices.

Allpress Espresso Roastery and Cafe


Allpress Espresso Collingwood


Located at 80 Rupert Street Collingwood. Allpress Espresso has grown from a coffee cart pushed around the streets of Auckland, into a worldwide coffee business that includes cafes in Sydney, London and Melbourne.

Established in what was once a disused warehouse. The fabulous large courtyard decked with greenery is the showstopper at Allpress Espresso Collingwood. With decor that’s equal parts industrial and natural, speciality coffee is served up thanks to their own beans roasted on site. I love to find a chair in this oasis for a delicious breakfast. It’s such a great start to the day.

The menu emphasises local produce and sharing options. Breakfast dishes which include hearty ingredients like provolone, ripe tomatoes and San Danielle prosciutto, are a wholly satisfying way to begin a day. A fabulous selection of sandwiches, sliced cold meats, and simple lunch dishes continue the theme into the afternoon.

There is also a naturally lit, open plan space above the roastery that has been branded Allpress Studio, and is available for neighbourhood arts, exhibitions and events.

Aunty Peg’s


Aunty Pegs Collingwood


At 200 Wellington Street Collingwood, you will find Aunty Peg’s. Opened by Proud Mary Coffee. Aunty Peg's is a cafe which showcases how they make their delicious coffee blends. However, the vast two-storey venue is more than just a glimpse behind-the-scenes. It’s also a roasting house, coffee bar, events space, retail shop and barista training centre.

Don’t be fooled by the name though. Aunty Peg’s takes its coffee very seriously. So seriously in fact, that they want you to drink it straight up, without milk, to savour it in all its glory. Based around a tasting concept, their cafe gives you the option to try endless brews served up by their expert baristas.

I love to sit at the bar and watch my espresso extract. It’s a great spot to savour a delicious, sweet treat and listen to the steady drum of Proud Mary’s roasting machines, visible in the connecting warehouse.

If you drop by at 10.30am on Saturdays, you can join a free tasting session. It’s well worth the trip.



Streat Collingwood


Located at 66 Cromwell Street Collingwood. Streat is a social enterprise that provides hospitality training and much-needed employment opportunities, to the homeless community in Melbourne. Housed in a 150-year-old heritage site. The building, which was once a pub, a brothel and an art gallery is now an 80-seat cafe, bakery and coffee roastery. Since its infancy in 2010. STREAT has trained more than 1100 disadvantaged youths in hospitality across its many businesses.

They raised $1 million through crowdfunding and secured a $2.5 million loan from NAB and Social Ventures Australia to finance the business.

If you set up camp in the spacious garden, the delectable scents of fresh bread, croissants and coffee beans drift across the courtyard long into the morning. Delicious coffee is roasted onsite. Inside you'll find a seasonal menu which focuses on the best local produce. There are ever changing, delicious lunch specials every week. Get in early as they sell out quick!

Oxford Larder


Oxford Larder Collingwood


At 18 Peel Street Collingwood you will find the fabulous Oxford Larder. The owners have turned what was a stark concrete bunker into a homely, contemporary take on the old corner store.

Just about every flat surface is covered in divine homewares and pantry goods for sale. There are plates and cups from local makers. Amazing cookbooks, wooden spoons, jams, breads, muesli, vegan chocolates and more. The giant chocolate freckles and old-fashioned jelly babies are my Achilles heel. I can’t get out of the Oxford Larder without purchasing a few.

The menu includes home-style meals that go easy on sugar, oil, onion and garlic. There are delicious baked eggs, porridge and potato waffles. The quiches, veggie fritters, meatballs and other pre-made takeaway dishes are all next level. Vegetables always figure strongly in the display cabinets.

To Be Frank

To Be Frank Collingwood


Located at 4 Bedford Street Collingwood. To Be Frank is an artisan bakery in the heart of Collingwood with an emphasis on sustainability and the community.

They bake both sourdough and a fermentation bread called respectus panis (a long fermentation using minimal kneading and less than .05% yeast). 

Alongside traditional baguettes and ciabatta, there’s lovely focaccia and Turkish bread topped with fennel, sesame and nigella seeds, sea salt flakes and Frattali olive oil.

If you’re looking for a sweet treat, try the Apple Galette. It's spiced apple and currants in a spelt shortcrust pastry finished with mascarpone, apple and lemon gel. Also available are almond croissants, chocolate chip cookies and Danishes.  

The coffee is single-origin, by Symmetry Coffee Roasters, and no single-use cups are available. The functional and industrial fit-out features timber plywood bench seating and soaring ceilings. 

If you time your visit before 10am you will be able to watch the bakers in action.