I’ve said it time and time again but the Northside is seriously brimming with hidden local gems if you look hard enough! Okay, so I was told about this place a while ago by one of my best foodie friends so I didn’t really stumble upon it it BUT when spontaneous coffee dates with your Mum (sometimes that’s all you need right?!) happen it’s sort of the same thing.
Located in the blooming neighborhood of Northlakes, you could be fooled in believing The Fort just looks like your regular morning coffee pit-stop. Think again. Once you venture in further, you would think you had stepped back in time to a rather retro American themed establishment full of interesting knick knacks in every corner. I was so surprised to see something this cool in the ‘burbs. Decked out with a bucket load of NFL paraphernalia a comic book collection on the ceiling (and tables, for reading), a Duff Beer planter, hanging bicycle, cross-stitches of the owners faces and sugar in Dr. Pepper bottles complete the design. The space is open without being too spacious featuring an eclectic mix of tunes and the sweet sounds of coffee being ground and poured while you tuck into some seriously tasty treats. Let me tell you about them.. and the all important coffee.
Run by Jason and Tim – with a bundle of their housemates also found behind the machine, Cup Specialty Coffee is featured on the blend front. The Five Star Day house blend and a rotating single origin grace the machine along with Queensland Milk from the Sunshine Coast Hinterland or Bonsoy complete your coffee, with the cafe’s bottles of cold-pressed coffee also causing a stir. We had a flat white and cappuccino and I must say while they could have been a tad warmer the blend was lovely, as were the cups they were presented in. Latte art on the top was also on point so I can see why so much love and attention to detail goes into the coffee side of things here.
Keeping things simple but not skimping on quality, the current short but sweet menu sees brunch faves like seasoned avocado mash with caramelized onions, goats cheese and basil on pumpkin sourdough, granola with organic yoghurt and the corn fritters Fort style. At lunch, sandwiches take on an American feel as well as cabinet stocked with rolls and wraps. After hearing so much about them, we went for the corn fritters and avo mash (naturally!) the latter which featured two slices of delightful pumpkin sourdough, smeared with creamy avo (lovely and seasoned too!) dotted with creamy goats cheese, sprinkled with sweet sticky caramelized onion and garnished with basil. Super tasty and presented beautifully. The fritters were a real surprise, stacked high and topped with bacon jam, spicy sauce and rocket. A little bit firey for me but Mum loved it.
Well I’m just going to say it again, I was super impressed with The Fort being such an uber cool hangout in little ol’ Northlakes. With attention to detail and obvious passion for coffee and humble eats, the guys at The Fort have really nailed a suburban venture that would take pride of place in any city laneway. I’ll definitely be back for some signature cold press and probably more avo goodness. Make a spontaneous little trip out and try The Fort, I’m sure you’ll love it!