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Tea & Coffee Culture in Australia

Tea & Coffee Culture in Australia

There is no doubt that Australia has a strong and world-known coffee and tea culture, which is tightly linked to its migration history. Here, we will go through the main facts that have made these two popular beverages a signature for Australia’s biggest tourist attractions.

Coffee culture in Australia

You might wonder, how did Australia, being a tea-drinking British colony, found its way to become internationally recognised for its coffee?

The introduction of espresso coffee is tightly linked to immigration, when Italians arrived in Australia during World War II.  They brought the first espresso machines, which introduced a new flavour of less bitter brew, served by itself or topped with creamy milk. After that, the espresso bars quickly became a sensation in Sydney and Melbourne, much beyond the Italian migrant community that had started it. 

In the 1960’s, cafes, with their unique decorative styles, attracted Australian bohemians and people that were looking for something different than the old-style milk bars. Small groups of people started gathering around coffee spots, but it was still a very expensive drink. 

By the 1980’s, coffee had become more affordable, and that gave it a boost in a community that, at the same time started to enjoy a relatively higher standard of living, which allowed them to have time and money to enjoy a cuppa as a social experience. 

More cafes started to open in Australia’s big cities, and each of them competed on having the most unique decorations, along with providing high quality barista coffee, bringing the best coffee beans from around the world, and offering delicious coffee blends. 

Today, cafes in Australia offer innovative coffee beverages, together with exotic complementary foods, which makes it a really enjoyable and unforgettable experience for customers. Australians take great pride in their coffee scene today, and it has become a big tourist attraction for the country. Cafes get hundreds of coffee orders every day, and people are usually very loyal to their local cafe, going there daily for their morning coffee. 

Tea Culture in Australia

Now, regarding tea culture, there’s no doubt that the British legacy has permeated in Australia since becoming a British colony, but also the influence and immigration from Asian countries which have a strong tea culture has been crucial. Countries like China, Japan, Korea, India, Nepal, and other South-East Asian countries have brought their traditional blends and tea rituals to Australia. There’s also a wide and sophisticated variety of tea shops and small businesses offering unique tea blends, for the non-coffee drinkers. 

We talked to Grace from The Tea Nomad (, and asked her a few questions about tea culture in Australia:


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