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Where to get your RoadNats coffee fix

Visit Ballarat

13 Dec 2023

Filed underFood & Drink

Australia’s best cyclists will battle it out on the streets of Ballarat from 3 – 7 January for the 2024 Federation University Road National Championships. With a jam-packed five-day program, RoadNats competitors and spectators alike are sure to hit the caffeine trail.

Espresso culture in Ballarat dates back just as far as our metropolitan neighbours, with coffee palaces established at the height of the temperance movement during the gold rush. Flash forward 130 years and we are really spoiled for choice, with a dream team of local coffee roasters, baristas and dairy farmers combining their crafts for the perfect cuppa.  

Keep an eye out for Ballarat’s own Hellbilly Roasting or Karon Farm Coffee, and quality milk by Inglenook Dairy, which has been produced locally since the early 1900s and is now served at more than half of the city’s cafes and restaurants.

Here’s a short selection of coffee spots to kickstart your cogs. Pick a new spot each day of RoadNats or plan your route around your favourite roasts.

Ballarat caffeine stops during RoadNats

  • 1816 Bakehouse (Hellbilly Roasting) open 6am Mon – Saturday, 7am Sunday
  • Cobb’s Coffee (Rumble Coffee), open 6.30am Wednesday – Saturday. Closed Sunday 7 January.
  • Johnny Alloo (St Ali and Proud Mary), open 8am daily
  • Hotel Canberra – The Stables Tea Room (Karon Farm Coffee), open 8am daily
  • Hydrant Food Hall (The Hydrant Blend), open 7am daily
  • The Turret Cafe (House Roast Coffee – Coffee Pirates), open 7am daily
  • Eclectic Tastes Cafe and Pantry, open from 7am daily. Closed Sunday 7 January.
  • Restaurant Lola (St Ali), open 7.30am daily
  • The Boatshed Restaurant (Piazza D’oro Terroso), open 8am daily
  • Pipers by the Lake (Dimattina), open 8am daily
  • Carboni’s Next Door (NorthSouth Coffee), open 8am Wednesday – Saturday, 9am Sunday 7 January.
  • Lilly’s Ballarat at Eureka Centre, open 10am daily.
  • Olive Grove Delicatessen, open 8.30am Wednesday – Saturday. Closed Sunday 7 January.
  • Racers Cafe (Little Collins), open 7am Wednesday – Friday.
  • Higher Society, open 7am Wednesday – Friday, 8am Saturday and Sunday
  • L’Espresso, open 7am daily

We’ll add more to the list as they are confirmed closer to the event – so bookmark this page for when you are on the go.

Head to Ballarat In the Know for a list of opening hours during the Christmas and New Year period.

At the Road Races, Mount Buninyong

Bean Me Up Coffee will be at the Road Race in Buninyong on Saturday 6 and Sunday 7 January. You’ll also find Deja Brew Xpresso in the spectator zone on the mountain on the Sunday to power you through the final day of RoadNats. To keep your belly happy, there will be gelato and food trucks at the event on both days.

You can also grab a warm brew from one of the many local cafes in Buninyong, including Maggie & Kate, Dynamite Cycles and Cafe, Buninyong Bakehouse Cafe, Bluestone Cafe, and Espresso Depot.

One Hour Coffee Ride

Challenge your mates on some of the most sought-after Strava segments in Ballarat or take it at your own pace and enjoy the scenery through the Creswick State Forest. The 30.7km Coffee Ride starts at L’espresso Café (open from 7am daily) and ends at Webster’s Market and Cafe. Please note Webster’s is closed in January but we recommend stopping by nearby cafe Johnny Alloo for your post-ride coffee fix (open from 7am daily during RoadNats).

There’s no shortage of cafes serving up locally-roasted or Melbourne-style coffee to keep you on pace across this action-packed weekend. Explore more breakfast and brunch ideas in our five-day RoadNats 2024 itinerary.

Across Victoria’s Midwest, we acknowledge that we travel across the ancient landscapes of many First Peoples communities.

These lands have been nurtured and cared for over tens of thousands of years and we respect the work of Traditional Custodians for their ongoing care and protection.

We recognise the past injustices against Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples in this country. As our knowledge grows, we hope that we can learn from their resilience and creativity that has guided them for over 60,000 years.

As we invite people to visit and explore Victoria’s Midwest, we ask that alongside us, you also grow to respect the stories, living culture and connection to Country of the Ancestors and Elders of our First Peoples.