Coffee Alchemy, widely acknowledged as home to Sydney’s best coffee, has brought the attention to detail and its artisanal approach to coffee making to the CBD with Gumption. While Coffee Alchemy Marrickville reflects its industrial neighbours with it’s darker grungier presentation, Gumption is a contrast, straddling jewelers, high-end designers and bespoke creatives in the historic Strand Arcade building in the Pitt Street mall precinct. Lots of light filters through the Strand Arcade and even on the dullest of days, it’s a beautiful spot to take in a coffee.
Gumption is a coffee only proposition, with no food offerings but does not suffer from lack of traffic. The lines are never-ending, yet it’s never a long wait with multiple baristas skillfully operating the machines, and the service staff decked out in black with tanned lined aprons efficiently moving around, serving coffee to customers. There are benches to rest and sip your coffee yet most will be happy to take away.
Pour Over – Kenya Nyeri Single Origin is a super smooth coffee, dark brown yet mildly translucent. Each taste reveals a sharpness of flavour which quickly fades away to a tea like finish. It’s equal parts fruity with dry plum like flavours and floral. Bring the tumbler to your nose and take in the beautiful aroma – just divine. The pour over method extracts maximum flavour but provides a silky fine coffee that so easy to consume.
With a perfect froth as it meets the lips, this Cappuccino has tangy, cherry overtones that awaken the mouth and reminds you that this is not just another tired coffee shop refugee. Cappuccinos can revive memories of foamy “choc-top” concoctions made of instant coffee, scorched mild and a heavy handed dusting of Nestle Quik. Thankfully, a new era of respectability has dawned for this old café standby and Gumption has turned its artisan hands to further lifting the Cappuccino to the rightful position it deserves.
The Cold Brew with milk over ice is a delight. The coffee flavour is omnipresent, as opposed to other iced coffee drinks, where the coffee is almost forgotten with heavy dollops of sugar-laden ice cream and thickness of milk drowning out the flavour. Gumption’s ‘coffee first’ philosophy comes to the fore. It’s a well balanced beverage that will still appeal to coffee lovers, yet is the perfect antidote to day of trudging the pavement of Pitt Street exercising both the body and credit card procuring the latest fashion.
Gumption’s terrific location also wins favour by being one of the last cafes to close in the city, even staying open until 8pm on a Thursday which is pure awesomeness. It has more than once saved me and it will save you too if you wander into the Strand Arcade and look for the Tiffany blue sign on the ground level. A coffee oasis awaits you.