· By Herb Lester

Mario’s, Melbourne

Extract from An Appetite for Melbourne.

Before the advent of single origins, syphons and soy milk, the coffee world was a simple place, one where full-bodied, dark-roast espresso and opinionated Italians reigned. For over 20 years, Mario’s approach to coffee has rejected trend and remained committed to the same uncompromising no-nonsense approach that established it as an icon during the 1980s and 1990s. The distinctive red neon signage, poster-filled walls and waistcoated waiters are marks of an era when things were not so rushed and a lazy half day spent over a few espressos and a book was time well spent.

303 Brunswick Street, 3065
Mon-Sat: 7am-10.30pm; Sun: 8am-10.30pm