Since opening in late 2013, Three Williams has been the talk of the town. The casual cafe serves a tightly curated breakfast and lunch menu, and the kitchen has earned numerous accolades.
Whether it’s the smoothie with banana, Medjool dates and walnut praline, or the rustic-style French Toast, the meals at Three Williams push cafe cuisine into new territory.
Three Williams is located on Elizabeth Street in Redfern, and, if you’re not careful, you might pass the inconspicuous entrance on your first visit. The cafe is located in a subterranean area of the building, and, as you enter, from the top of the stairs, you can take in the entire venue with just a glance. It is massive, spanning a generous 280 square metres – a rarity in Redfern.
Designed by Anthony Gill Architects, the café has an industrial feel, with whitewashed bricks, concrete floors, and exposed pipes, and there are also brown-leather benches and craftsman woodwork to lend a modern atmosphere. Tables run the periphery of the room; the baristas work in the centre; and the kitchen is in back. One whole corner is dedicated to kids, with a gigantic chalkboard and toys, and the café offers complimentary WiFi and power points for web wanderers, too.
Toby Iaccarino and Glen Bowditch own Three Williams, and it is their first venture together. The two met through the hospitality industry. Glen previously helped oversee the rapid expansion of a number of Sonoma cafés around Sydney and managed The Grounds of Alexandria, and Toby worked at Kirribilli Pizza Shop. They saw that there was a lack of large, well-done cafés in the Redfern area, and, recognising it as an up-and-coming area, they wanted to create a landmark café that could be enjoyed by families, friends, and colleagues alike.
“Our main point of difference is our food – cafe classics with our own twist,” said Glen. Case in point are the narnies, a modern update on the sandwich that includes house-made naan-style bread. For fillings, you can choose roast duck, glazed beef brisket, or the wild mushroom narnie with baby spinach, truffle balsamic, and stracchino cheese dressing. Thanks to the naan-style bread, the sandwich is nice and chewy and the ingredients of the filling are at the forefront of every bite.
The café is dedicated to supporting local growers, and it sources many of its most important ingredients, such as avocado, cauliflower, and kale, locally. From its Batlow Apples to its rurally grown oranges and daikon, the remainder of its fresh produce is purchased through Fruitique from NSW farmers. This careful sourcing really comes through in the café’s breakfast and lunch salads, which include the extremely popular grilled northeast Atlantic octopus salad with savoy cabbage, chilli, preserved lemon, and pork crackling.
“A lot of effort has been put into creating a menu that people want to visit again and again,” said Glen, “whether you are in the mood for something light and fresh, such as a salad, or indulgent, like triple cooked chips.” With a menu that changes with the seasons and a kitchen that continues to create deliciously surprising dishes, Three Williams is one café that is worth dropping into again and again.
Stay in touch with the café on its social media channels, where drool-worthy specials and food snaps are updated daily.