When I started studying at university last year, the young, starry-eyed version of myself thought (naively) that delicious and affordable coffee would be abundant in Adelaide’s CBD.
My dream was shattered by the end of the first week.
These days, my on-campus coffees are reserved for circumstances of severe caffeine deprivation, as they usually range from awful to merely passable. Even a trip down Rundle St can’t always guarantee a good coffee, though they are usually better than their on-campus counterparts. And even if I manage to get coffee which actually tastes like coffee, most of the time I also want somewhere to unwind after a hard day of studying (or not), which is difficult to find on Rundle.
This is where Relax in Vintage comes in.
Relax in Vintage (or RV) is located, quite peculiarly, on the upper floors of the Myer Centre. Chances are that if you didn’t know it was there, you would likely never find it, since few people venture to these levels to begin with. I was lucky enough to spot it coming down the escalator one day, and I’ve been returning ever since.
RV is half cafe, half vintage fashion. I occasionally have a look at their selection of lovely-looking clothes, but I’m almost always there for the coffee.
So. The coffee. (Have I said coffee enough times yet?) They use de Groots beans, which are probably my favourite in the world. I am no coffee expert (just maybe a bit of a coffee snob) but this stuff is good. The milk seems to vary, but I’ve spotted Tweedvale and BD Paris Creek along the line, both of which I like and drink at home.
The best thing about it? It’s almost always strong enough, and it’s always at a drinkable temperature when you receive it. No burning mouth sensation which is horribly familiar to caffeine addicts. Seriously, you don’t understand how much I hate burnt coffee with scalded milk. Ick.
Along with the ordinary range of coffees, Relax also make a great ice coffee, which is perfect for a mid-afternoon caffeine/sugar pick-me-up. A more recent discovery is their affogato – it was presented so nicely, and made a tasty, but not so sweet treat when I didn’t feel like drinking a large amount of milk.
While RV don’t sell cafe-style lunches (although soup has been on the menu in the past), they always have a great selection of sweet treats. I’ve been fortunate enough to try the Persian love cake, the mini cheesecake and the shortbread kisses and I have enjoyed them all immensely. They all have a homemade touch.
The other plus about RV is that, as the name suggests, it truly is a great place to relax. There are super comfy couches scattered around the place, and an old TV* set up; you feel as if you’re sitting in someone’s cosy living room. Sometimes I’ll go there with friends or my boyfriend**, or if I’m alone I’ll bring a textbook, and just relax for an hour or so. It’s very easy to forget you’re in the middle of a busy shopping centre.
Of course, I couldn’t review RV without mentioning the lovely Greg and Nikohl, the owners of the shop. They are always so friendly and up for a chat. They also put up with my indecisiveness at the counter, which is pretty amazing!
Do you feel like relaxing in vintage now? Here are the details:
*The couch next to the old TV is my spot. Don’t steal it ;)
**Who lovingly took all the photos for this post. Find him on instagram: @taylorarrr