In order to have a productive writing day, it is imperative I get out of the house. Otherwise I run the risk of succumbing to the sweet embrace of my couch (and multi-episodes of Doctor Who).
I look for three things when searching for the right cafe to work in: wifi, decent coffee, and friendly staff who don’t mind me using their table as a “coffice” for a few hours.
I’m always a little surprised at how often I come up empty when looking for a place that can meet my needs. If their power points aren’t taped off, they don’t have wifi; if they have wifi, there are usually so few tables available or it is so busy that I wouldn’t dream of taking one of them hostage. While I always get more than just a coffee if i’m planning on spending more than 30 minutes at a place, I try to abide by standard cafe etiquette by not overstaying my welcome if they are busy.
Because I understand that turning tables=more money to keep that small business running, so far be it from me to get in their way! Thankfully, 2042 cafe in Newtown is always there to save me from procrastination by providing all three requirements and ample space to set up shop.
The restaurant is flooded with light and is very open and airy, a great bonus if you tend to get sleepy on the job.
They have a big menu that will cater to all of your dietary whims: all day breakfast, small plates, wraps and sandwiches, even cheese and charcuterie plates (yes, please). I come here with enough regularity to be able to say the food is consistently seasonal, fresh, and good; no small feat for a restaurant.
I sat down around 1 and took advantage of their all day breakfast (ie; the most amazing concept ever). I ordered 2 fried eggs over Turkish bread that had been shmeared with a good helping of hummus. As a small side they offered a parsley salad with chopped pistachios, tomatoes, and onions tossed in a sharp red wine vinaigrette.
I get that they were making a play off of tabbouleh (a traditional Middle Eastern salad made of bulgur, chopped parsley, garlic, onions, tomatoes and cucumbers), but I would have preferred that they chopped the parsley instead of leaving the leaves whole. Sure, it looked more elegant this way, but I felt like a cow chewing on tough cud (definitely not elegant).
But the hummus was fresh and the eggs were sourced locally from Hawkesbury River Farm. You can tell how good they were just by looking at the vibrant color of their yolks.
The Professor joined me a little later and tucked into some lunch: a wrap stuffed to the brim with slow roasted lamb, cous cous salad, hummus, yogurt, and mint sauce.
I snuck a bite (or three). The wrap did not lack for some melt-in-your mouth tender, shredded lamb. The sharp mint sauce helped with balancing the heavy meat, and the hummus provided a mediterranean style creaminess that was far better than mayo (something I thought I would never say). The couscous stuffed into the wrap felt a little redundant to me, because I’m not a big fan of starch on starch action. I would have much preferred a scoop of it nestled on to the green salad, but the perfectly cooked and seasoned lamb well made up for that.
Overall I would say 2042 Cafe is great when you’re looking for a quiet, casual atmosphere to get some work done, meet up with friends (the space can absorb a crowd), or get a cup of coffee and a small bite (or a big one). They also serve beer, wine, and cocktails, in case you are someone who occasionally imbibes to get those writing juices flowing (…like yours truly).
2042 Cafe and Bar
Hours: Mon-Thur 8am-4pm
403-405 King Street, Newtown, NSW 2042
Can any Sydney-siders recommend another “Coffice” for me to check out? Let me know in the comments.