Bay Coffee Roasters – Neutral Bay

Coffee: 15/20
Whole experience (cafe + coffee): 28/40

There is something utterly depressing about walking down Military Road in the rain. There are plenty of café options, it’s just from a purely visual look none of the options look overly appealing.

My opinion was not overly uplifted turning off the main road, in search of something better and finding the Woolworths car park instead. That is until I spotted Bay Coffee Roasters hidden in the corner of the carpark.

Like an Inner West mecca, in a 4 wheel drive dominated Lower North Shore car park, there was something exciting about seeing a micro roaster so out of place. Walking into the shop, I grabbed one of the inside tables and ordered a latte.

The coffee was made quickly and so much so that as it was presented I could still see the drink layering in fount of my eyes. Bam, amazing.

Presentation wise, it did not look so dissimilar to Bar Pistevo down the road. There has clearly been a run on the Campos china with the identical brown saucer. The art on top was a nice instinctually poured heart, nothing that you would look twice at.

There was a very pleasing roasted aroma to this coffee. You could just smell the full body of this coffee jumping out at you.

Tasting it, the flavour follows the aroma. It’s a well-bodied coffee from the get go. Its flavours are greatly assisted and developed by the roasting and there is something quite milk chocolaty and quite nutty about the flavour. One of the real pleases of this drink is the after taste, I’m often afraid in a chocolate/ roasted flavour combo that you’ll end up with a sour after taste. To my pleasure I found it to sit quite well. To be honest, you can just tell it’s a blend better suited to the pure espresso, but does still work well for the milk coffee variety.

Letting it sit, decreases the roast’s flavours and leaves the drinker with a more earthy and chocolate like experience. It’s worth lingering over the coffee here.

Oh… Lower North Shore. The atmosphere of the place was quite odd, in fact so were the customers (which does account for the atmosphere). It’s a great looking space with some industrial chic thing happening for it. While reasonably full of people, it was bizarrely quiet, and for me to an uncomfortable level. Funnily even in roaster the request for extra hot seems to be plague for the Lower North Shore. I overheard twice the request for overly heated milk.

Overall, you could miss this place if you blinked. How often do you go into a supermarket car park looking for a coffee? The answer is you probably should if Bay Coffee is to go off. Nice, if a little quite staff, coffee options highly developed and their house blend is one to be enjoyed and lingered over.

1. Coffee score
Style (look and feel): 7/10
Experience (taste and smell): 8/10
Coffee total: 15/20

2. Cafe score
Style (what’s it feel like): Industrial
Cool?: 7/10
Service: 6/10
Cafe: 13/20
Whole experience (coffee + cafe): 28/40

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