Oli & Levi
This new CBD laneway café serves coffee with a smile
Oli & Levi is the latest café to hit one of Melbourne’s many laneways. Tucked down the far end of a no through road, it’s easy to miss. But if your periphery vision is well tuned (or if you read this article and plug it into Google Maps), you’ll catch a glimpse of the canary yellow awning shading some stools along the footpath.
Owner Lloyd Smith, who named the café after his much-loved dogs, is serving consistently smooth Allpress Coffee alongside a team of staff who know the meaning off good ol’ hospitality. The La Marzocco espresso machine fits snuggly into the miniscule open kitchen, where rusted green industrial lights contrast against shiny black tiles.
Make a friend and pull up a seat at the sizeable communal table or sit in front of the coffee machine and chat up the staff. Let’s be honest, they’re too polite not to oblige. The expected outdoor seating arrangement will soon be the perfect place to sip caffeine European laneway style—although realistically, the coffee will be decidedly more delicious and the people that walk by less interesting to look at. You can’t win them all.
If you need breakfast on the run, grab a mini BLT roll or a buttery pastry. Workers based in the city are quickly hearing about the hot duck baguette, where a baguette from the Convent Bakery in Abbotsford is stuffed with tender duck, slaw salad and doused with homemade plum sauce.
But it’s Oli & Levi’s signature egg tarts (a square pastry shell housing a whole baked egg, basil, feta and sundried tomatoes) that are stealing the spotlight. And at $1.50 a pop, they’re practically hatching and walking out the door.
If you need to escape the office, you won’t find a better excuse than Oli & Levi.
Location: Shop 2/20 Coromandel Place, Melbourne
Open: Mon-Fri 7am-5.30pm (soon opening on weekends)
Phone: (03) 9650 0501