I have a dilemma - my boys are over going to cafes! When we get up on Saturday morning and I tell them to get dressed because we are going out for breakfast, I get every excuse under the sun as to why they possibly couldn't face another cafe so early in the morning. I only really have one trick up my sleeve to get them out of the house, dressed and into the car - nutella. See we don't have nutella in our house (as you would probably find me in the pantry inhaling spoonfuls of it), so if I say they can have nutella when we go out, they begrudgingly agree to come along with me.
Last Saturday morning, yet again I struggled to convince the boys to get dressed and out of the house - but then I showed them a photo on Instagram of the Nutella Bear from Vertical Espresso in South Turramurra - their little faces lit up and they were dressed and into the car in no time!
Vertical Espresso is a funky cafe located in the suburban shops on Kissing Point Road. There is a decent amount of parking right in front of the cafe and access into the cafe with a pram is easy. Seating is available both inside and out the back in a courtyard and it was one of those cafes where you grab a menu and go up and order at the counter. There are a number of high chairs available and there are toilets on site at the back of the cafe, but they don't contain a baby change table.
The nutella bear (actually according to the menu it is a rabbit) is not the only cool kid friendly aspect of Vertical Espresso - they are also located next to a pretty cool playground! Balmaringa Reserve is across a lane way from the back of the cafe. There is excellent play equipment, swings and slippery slides within the bush like reserve, as well as a bike path. Now if you have older kids, you can sit at one of the outdoor tables in the back court yard and your kids can happily play in the playground - we were happy to let our boys do this as they were the only kids in the park at 8am in the morning!
But my dear parents, I must warn you of two things - the one-way only lane way is used by vehicles (a garbage truck drove by whilst we were eating our breakfast), so please do not let your kids wander across to the playground by themselves. Secondly the gates to access the fully fenced playground are not directly opposite the cafe - one of them is on the opposite side of the playground, and the other is around the other side which cannot be seen when sitting down at the tables out the back of the cafe. If you have little kids you can always grab takeaway and sit in the park on one of the park benches whilst your kidlets play.
The seating area out the back of Vertical Espresso is enclosed by a wee picket fence. The tables are old cable wheels and the seating is on milk crates - luckily there are cushions on top of the crates, as my mum bum doesn't sit too well on these! There are pots of herbs (make sure your kids don't pick the chillies) and other cute knick knacks around the place, giving it an industrial yet rustic feel.
Now back to the kids food - obviously the nutella bear is darn cute. It comes on a melamine plate and to give it a "healthy" touch, it is meant to come on wholemeal bread. If your kids aren't fans of nutella they also serve a peanut butter version which comes with banana and honey - both of these options are $4.00. If you would prefer your little munchers eat something more wholesome, they also have a soft boiled egg on wholemeal toast available for $6.90. The kids menu is available all day and a couple of more lunch time like options are Hawaiian pizza toasted sourdough with grilled cheese, ham & pineapple ($8.50); or quesadillas with either grilled cheese & avocado or ham & cheese that come with cucumber and strawberry ($8.50).
I think the kids menu is excellent - not a chip or nugget to be seen. It's not really that hard to put together a reasonably healthy kids menu is it? I didn't order the boys anything to drink - I just grabbed them some tap water from the self help water station within the cafe. However kid size milkshakes are available for $4.00 and come in a cute teddy bear glass and standard babycinos are also served. Fruit juice, smoothies, lush hot chocolates as well as Salty Dog sparkling soft drinks are also on the drinks menu.
They brew Gabrielle Coffee at Vertical Espresso and geez it's good. Perfectly brewed and presented, it's most definitely the sort of coffee you can have more than one of. If you are in the hood at either morning or afternoon tea time it would go perfectly with one of the decadent looking sweet treats that are in the cake cabinet inside the cafe. For those of you who do not require a caffeine fix to get yourself through the day, Vertical Espresso have an intriguing tea list - flavours such as spring green and honeydew green sit alongside your staples of English breakfast and earl grey.
They serve an all day adults menu at Vertical Espresso. You too can indulge in nutella (on wholemeal crumpets) or in healthy breakfast bowls, tarts, sandwiches and salads. I loved that the menu is reasonably priced (most items are less than $15.00) and I loved the cafe's version of avo smash that I chose for breakfast! It's a bit different from other avo on toast that I have sampled, in that the toasted sourdough was smeared with basil pesto and there was a good size wedge of grilled haloumi on each slice - haloumi and avocado are definitely a marriage made in heaven. Mr Munch's scrambled eggs with a side of bacon was one very large serve and the bacon was just a bit too well done for his liking.
As we left I was going to grab a takeaway coffee to enjoy in the park whilst the boys had one last play BUT the queue was huge! So here is a little tip - arrive early if you plan to have breakfast on the weekend. Vertical Espresso swing open their doors at the family friendly hour of 7am, so get the brood up and ready early (promise them a good dose of nutella if that helps) and check out how darn kid friendly Vertical Espresso is for yourself some time soon.
Do you have nutella in your house Little Munchers? What are your tips to get the kids out of the house first thing in the morning on weekends?
217 Kissing Point Rd, South Turramurra
Open 7 days 7am - 4pm