Coté Terra in Oakleigh makes us think of those old Al Pacino coffee ads. You know, where he’s sitting there sipping espresso, then he taps the table and goes, ‘This is good coffee.’
Because although Coté Terra does some truly banging brunches, its real point of difference is an almost inhuman commitment to bring you the perfect cup of coffee. And this is in Melbourne, where good espresso extraction is a more venerated science than heart surgery.
The beans come from Cote Terra's own roastery in Braeside, and the blend they're serving at the moment is called the Flying Dutchman (made from Ethiopian Colombian and Brazilian beans). They're also doing three single origin espressos and three single origin filters, rotating fortnightly. Plus cold brew.
Coté Terra is also one of the few cafes we’ve seen that actually weighs their espresso extraction right there on the machine—the theory being, each and every cup should taste the same. It’s about as close as you’re gonna get to robotic accuracy without visiting Once Alike in Collingwood.
Now, you’ll need some good nosh to go with those two lattes (yeah, you’re getting another one). There’s a breakfast and lunch menu, and both are available all day. The mushroom ragu with truffled polenta chips, poached eggs and pecorino is an excellent way to start your morning (and the no-nonsense ‘steak and eggs’ is always tempting), but our personal pick is the Terra Waffles. Belgian-style waffles with a tart raspberry sorbet, white choc soil and freeze-dried fruit. Heaven.
Coming to Coté Terra and not trying specialty coffee is a bit like visiting the Zoo for the gift shop, but if beans aren’t your bag, they also do a range of smoothies, fresh-squeezed juices, teas, chai...and even wine. Don’t expect vino fireworks, but a few choice drops from the Barossa and Margaret River certainly get the job done at lunchtime.
You’ll find Coté Terra tucked down Chester St, just near Oakleigh station. Just follow the scent of roasting beans (and the swell of hungry locals). A proper backstreet gem.
Image credit: Jenna Fahey-White