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Sitting in the airport with flight tickets in hand to Australia, the least of my worries was coffee.  Sure, I knew the airplane was bound to have terrible coffee but let’s face it- it’s not a coffee house.  Little did I know what was in store for us two coffee lovers (ok addicts) when we reached Down Under.

First step off the plane, it was 7:09AM and all I could think of was a nice cup of coffee.  It was early but warm compared to the airplane so we chose to stop at a nice coffee house and have an iced coffee.  Little did I know what was in store for us when ordering an ‘iced coffee’.  Now for you non-Americans, iced coffee is just want it sounds like ice and coffee in a cold glass.  In Australia I learned it was this:

Apparently ice coffee is something of a different breed than I ever expected.  Speaking American English doesn’t always help you out in Australia – I think I had better luck in Japan.  So in Australia, ice coffee means ice cream with a ton of milk and a little coffee.  If you are a hot chocolate lover, it can be made the same way just with chocolate instead of coffee.  I had no idea so Genki Husband and I both ordered one with the intentions of a refreshing first drink.  Failure!  Pink in Oz knew we didn’t drink cow’s milk but she didn’t notice the difference either – so funny!  Our faces were epic!

Coffee Tree Roasters in Canberra, Australia. Fair Trade Coffee!

Inside Coffee Tree Roasters in Canberra, Australia

Coffee Tree Roasters to-go cups – typical

So coffee lovers going to Australia listen up, here’s your instructions to Aussie Coffee.  Besides the few Starbuck’s available in Sydney, you will not get a filtered coffee.  Australia coffee houses prefer to make espresso shots and then add water to make a ‘coffee’.  Similar to ordering beer, there are different names to order coffee too.

Nutmeg Coffee Kiosk inside Sydney Shopping Mall

Menu for Nutmeg

Short Black = espresso shot for instant wake-up call
Long Black = 1/3 espresso shot with 2/3 water for larger coffee and chats
Flat White = 1/3 espresso shot with 2/3 steamed milk (most don’t have non-dairy)

*Note:  Coffee is served very hot in Australia unlike in America which has regulations due to numerous lawsuits.  So as always, drink safe. Additionally, most only accept cash.

dare Cafe in the Rocks area in Sydney, Australia

The Menu at dare Cafe

Other than those three options, everything else is the same as far as we noticed expect for the price.  For some reason, coffee is very expensive.  Basically to drink coffee, get ready to pay at least $3.75-5 for a long black.  Many times we found an Australia ice coffee was cheaper than just a long black.  But with a full day of adventures ahead, one needs to have a good coffee, right?  If you are lucky enough to have a water heater in your hotel room, instant coffee is available at all grocery stores. Actually it’s a novelty to buy beans instead of instant.  Fair Trade is also starting to reach Australia and its coffee options.

First Coffee Experience was here at a small coffee house in South Sydney, Australia.

Thank goodness Australia has coffee though, right!  Once you get the hang of ordering, the coffee is wonderful so feel at peace, you can travel and have your coffee too.

Australian Aborigine Art for modern coffee.