Birdcage Altona Cafe
7 Harrington Square, Altona, Victoria, Australia
Wren, Emu, Kookaburra, Lark – these are the crisscrossing roads that make up Altona’s birdcage. At the top of the affectionately named area is Birdcage Altona Cafe, a welcoming space where creativity flies freely.
It’s been more than six years since Adrian Davey and his family moved to the bayside suburb in Melbourne’s west. In that time, not only has Adrian fallen in love with the area but he has developed strong community ties. Birdcage Altona Cafe embraces this ethos – the bright, warm space is more than a cafe, it’s a community hub where friendships are formed and encouraged to bloom. Adrian isn’t the only person at Birdcage who is as happy as a lark. Kim Murphy doesn’t consider managing the cafe a
Adrian isn’t the only person at Birdcage who is as happy as a lark. Kim Murphy doesn’t consider managing the cafe a “job”. After 10 years working in hospitality and a passion for coffee that shows no signs of stopping, Kim manages Birdcage with a spring in her step.
Then there’s Lauren Blackwood, who thinks being a barista is the best job in the world. It’s about more than just making coffee, she spends her days talking to customers and free-pouring swans into latte glasses. Her chirpy outlook on life has given her the title of “my favourite lady” among Altona’s littlest diners.
You can find Lauren behind the bright green La Marzocco, pulling smooth espresso shots using Campos Coffee’s Superior Blend. When devoured as an espresso or long black, the Superior Blend brings to mind sweet red fruit with a hint of caramel and chocolate and is just as delicious when combined with swirling steamed almond, soy or cow’s milk.
While you’re waiting for your coffee, take a seat at one of the stunning reclaimed wooden tables. Designed by IIWII by Tim Ryan, the natural knots and turns in the wood take you soaring into the treetops. Get closer to nature without having to go outside by resting under the ‘shade’ of the indoor tree with branches and leaves suspended through the roof.
While you may feel like you’re in a beautiful garden or park, the fare isn’t something you could quickly whip up for a picnic. In the morning dine upon house-made chai-spiced granola, served with silky vanilla panna cotta, mixed berry compote, seasonal fruit and cinnamon and honey yoghurt, munch on a mushroom medley with roast pumpkin smash, grilled halloumi and soft poached eggs, served upon quinoa soya toast with grilled lime.
When the sun is high in the sky, it’s time for lunch. Options include a Thai-inspired salad with noodles, vegetables and grilled beef, topped with a lime-infused dressing for just a little kick of heat. There are treats for the little ones too, with plenty of options that tiny tummies will enjoy – the lucky kids at Seaholme Primary School can even order their lunches from Birdcage.
Community is at the heart of Birdcage Altona Cafe. A visit will leave you caffeinated and full, but most of all you’ll leave feeling bright and happy ready to fly your way into the day.