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FOOD & DRINK

Where to Find Bottomless Coffee in Auckland

Sometimes one cup of joe won't cut it — here's where to find unlimited mugs of sweet nectar in Auckland.
By Leah Lynch
February 20, 2019
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Where to Find Bottomless Coffee in Auckland

Sometimes one cup of joe won't cut it — here's where to find unlimited mugs of sweet nectar in Auckland.
By Leah Lynch
February 20, 2019
  shares

WHERE TO FIND BOTTOMLESS COFFEE IN AUCKLAND

Sometimes one cup of joe won't cut it — here's where to find unlimited mugs of sweet nectar in Auckland.

Since the 1990s, when cafe culture — a la flat white and latte — took off in New Zealand, Auckland has become entangled in an all-consuming love affair with espresso-style coffee. These days, it's hard to to find a cafe or restaurant that doesn't sport an espresso machine of some description. Competent baristas are plentiful too. And poor ol' filter coffee? It has been neglected.

Let's be honest — the gleam of the stainless steel espresso machine, its Italian sexiness and charm, is damn hard to resist. But just like most European-inspired goods, espresso coffee continues to be expensive. If, like me, you're in the habit of knocking back two or three cups in one sitting, you'll spend, on average, a whopping $15 for your daily caffeine fix. When your wallet is light, your head fuzzy, and the thought of milk makes you gag, an overpriced latte can't compete with a bottomless filter coffee.

The distinction between espresso and filter coffee might be summarized as pressure vs gravity: espresso is prepared by forcing high-temperature water through coffee grinds, thereby producing a short, potent coffee shot that is usually crowned with crema. Filter coffee enjoys none of the shiny seductive engineering of espresso, but is sweeter than its Italian-style counterpart. This is in the main due to its length — it takes more time to brew, and uses more water, which allows the coffee oils and fragrances to percolate.

Below are four fab spots you can enjoy a bottomless cup of coffee in Auckland.

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    Decent coffee, breakfast and lunch options are hard to come by in Grey Lynn, such that Crumb — on the corner of Ariki Street and Crummer Road — is sure to remain a water-cooler of the neighbourhood. The café is rather cosy on the inside, with a simple fit-out and intimate seating to encourage yarns with the neighbours. The $5 bottomless batch brew coffee is Flight, and the food offerings are short and sweet. The menu is hearty, non-fussy and traditional, lending itself well to takeaway if you’re swinging by on your way to work. A tempting lineup of green juices, smoothies and milkshakes is available all day, alongside toasties and glass jars crammed with slices.

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  • 3

    Located on the far side of St Kevin’s Arcade, and thereby catching all the early morning sunshine, Bestie is a deservedly popular brunch spot for central-city dwellers. This café offers a charmingly eclectic menu, which is complemented by an excellent lineup of espresso coffees. One of Bestie’s lesser-known gems, however, is their bottomless Eighthirty filter coffee for $4.50. Arrive early to secure a table, and stay sipping coffee well into the afternoon.

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  • 2

    Shaky Isles is the café that embraces all things Kiwi: Vogels toast, pikelets, and wilted silverbeet, instead of spinach, on your eggs bene. And you can’t leave out the Whittaker’s chocolate bar that melts into your hot chocolate as you stir it in — sweet as. Located in Excelsior House on Customs Street East, the interior of the café embraces the historic nature of the 1897 building. The walls are stripped back to the original cladding, and decorated with the company’s distinctive graphics. You can choose from large communal tables or an annex with more intimate seating. All of this combines to create a very funky, inner city, New York-style vibe. They are also making filter coffee cool again, and the $4.50 bottomless mugs on offer entice you to stay and linger whilst enjoying the free wifi. The cold drip coffee comes in neat, still or sparkling varieties if you feel like a refreshing caffeine fix.

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  • 1

    Ah, the Fed. Al Brown’s New York-inspired joint is something of an experience. The Federal Delicatessen takes its cue from the Manhattan delis of the 30s, a time when delis reigned supreme on Manhattan island. During his youth, when he was working as a waiter in New York, Al fell in love with this quintessential style of dining, and decided to introduce the dying breed to New Zealand.

    One of the most important features of the Fed is its carefully-constructed but carefree ambience. Federal doesn’t look like it’s trying to imitate the 1930s — Federal just is the 1930s. Careful attention is paid to even the smallest of nuances, like the colour palette, the choice in typography, and the staff uniform.

    The mugs in which the filter coffee is served are lightly heated so you don’t have to drink your hot coffee with cold cups. For $4 you’ll have the choice of bottomless java from Havana or Supreme.

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