The first time I entered Dibella’s Roasting Warehouse on the corner of Little Lefroy Lane and South Terrace in Fremantle (Freo) I gasped in awe then clapped my hands together like an excited three year old. Yes, I really did.
It’s a coffee-the-experience lover’s heaven.
(Note: coffee-the-experience is about so much more than coffee-the-drink. It’s about the vibe too).
The coffee is smooth, strong and aromatic. The service is exceptional. The food is wide in variety, high in quality and reasonable in price.
There are abundant options of home coffee preparation equipment and fresh beans for sale, and bicycles for hire. It’s perfectly located mid-way between the Fremantle Markets & South Beach – no more than a ten minute bike ride to each.
Disclaimer to my disclaimer: I’ve lived and travelled extensively across Australia, so I’ve experienced other coastlines…but I’m still biased.
In some parts of the West Australian coast, the Indian Ocean greets the land with a gentle kiss. In others it knocks it over with an enthusiastic thump on the back.
I’ve not seen the vigorous greeting in Fremantle, but I haven’t had a full winter here yet. That may still come.
So far, South Beach has been a place to regroup, to exercise, to drink coffee, to catch up with friends, and to simply enjoy the view.
There are two cafés at South Beach.
One is a beach kiosk with staff who are friendly and calm regardless of how busy they are. It’s a comfortable place to grab an ice-cream, hot chips or a coffee before, during or after a South Beach experience. You’ll be right at home in sweaty exercise clothes, or a swimsuit and towel with sandy bare feet, or in your best Going Out Thongs (aka flip flops). Kids can run around on the grassy foreshore, dogs can be on a leash at your feet.
The other café has delicious but expensive food (upwards of $25 for a lunch main). My experience is it’s really only worth it if you’re there early in the morning for a light breakfast or coffee on a weekday; on weekends it is packed and usually has a line-up. It’s not terrible, and clearly many people love it (hence the lines to get in), but lacks the right vibe for it to be a Favourite Place on Penny’s List.
That being said, South Beach as a whole is still a Favourite Place because of the views and the vibe – and the fact that really good coffee is only a short drive away.