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Milk Bar by Cafe Ish, Redfern


“So this is the bit where we dribble a bit”

Such an apt introduction to a menu, it reflects the casual feel of this café, I think practically everyone who has researched Milk Bar or Café Ish would know about the history of these establishments and how they’re related, and that owners Josh and Ai are like celebrities in the blogosphere also known to mingle with bloggers. So I’ll skip that part and hand you some obvious but nevertheless, warranted advice.


Enter the torii-like gates for hearty American-diner/Japanese/Australian


Look up the opening hours of any place before you travel kilometres, only to find that it’s closed for that day of the week. I speak from experience. Milk Bar is closed on Tuesdays and open every other day, remember that, because the next time you find yourself in Redfern and peckish, you’ll want to pay this café a visit.

Pots of varying herbs adorn a wall, the menu tells you they make and bake everything, eggs and meat are free range, surprisingly affordable and is only a few minutes from Redfern station. Our first visit to Milk Bar by Café Ish is after it’s been open for months, which in blogger time, has been aeons. Having a penchant for lagging, my timing as usual is unfathomably behind considering most of the food blogosphere have already covered this place. On the plus side, with the time I should have spent blogging, I’m now a baus at thrift shopping, mothers and daughters don’t stand a chance when I rock up in my trackie dacks and my sidekick sister in tow, we are now the proud owners of 8 pieces of clothing for a meagre $16. I will gladly show you my finds if there is a demand for it, just leave a comment below requesting for a post about thrifting, or any subject matter really, I would love to hear from the hundreds of people that visit this blog, any comments shall be replied to in a timely manner, that I promise you.

It’s a blistering hot day when we turn up, also a great day for shakes, even if it were minus centigrade, you’d be hard pressed to turn down shakes with such tantalising descriptions as PBJ (salted peanut butter ice cream, crunchy peanut butter, raspberry and blueberry jelly) or Lime Time (vanilla ice cream, lemon, lime and yuzu curd, finger lime caviar). They use serendipity ice cream at Milk Bar, emphasising the top-notch quality produce they use.


Miso Caramel - vanilla ice cream, miso, caramel $7

This salty, sweet and creamy concoction is bring the house down, deserving of a rapturous applause. It’s so characteristic of the Japanese-Australian blend that makes Café Ish renowned. Without air conditioning in the café, on such a hot day as today, the shakes become less cold over time, perhaps chilled glasses would prolong the temperature when the mercury hits the thirties.


“Chuck Norris” it’s a P.G. rated pina colada - Vanilla ice cream, coconut macaroon ice cream, vanilla braised pineapple, yuzu, lemon & lime curd $7

Who else finds lengthy descriptions enticing? My theory as to why it’s called Chuck Norris is because it may well not get any better than all of the above. Coconut, vanilla, pineapple and citrus, just go along with the tropical fruitiness this shake offers and do not disagree with the ultimate epitome of summer.


Cheeseburger $5 w/ fries $4

Great quality burger and fries for under $10 in total, toppings are an extra $3. Such as: Classic (lettuce and tomato), Japanese (pickled daikon, carrot, cabbage and wasabi mayo), Italian (rocket, tomato, aioli, balsamic, parmesan) and $5 for Aussie (roasted beetroot, free range egg, free range bacon, lettuce, tomato)


The burger bun is soft and toasted, the beef patty is pleasingly smoky from the grill, although is a tad dry, however, oozes with cheese, pickles and a tangy ketchup. Perfect fries with crunchy exterior and fluffy inside are mandatory with burgers, as provided here. Take notice of the option to double or triple beef and cheese layers.

Ai’s freaking awesome chicken wings w/ vinegar and shallot sauce $13

Crispy, saucy, limey, fried chicken wings. Some that were left to soak up the sauce became stickily smothered in the mix of vinegar and sugar. We demolished the entire basket, skin and all, made a mess too.


Custard tart $4.50

Cola Float

Pet travel

Even though I don’t know Josh and Ai personally, their cheekily fun personalities are felt in the American-diner style food, this approach being refreshing from Ai enquired whether I was a blogger, when I told her so she said she would look up this blog, I am still so chuffed by how sweet she is, thank you Josh & Ai, I know this post has been a long time coming, looking forwards to a follow-up visit soon.There are so many more pastries, regretfully I couldn’t manage great shots though. These were taken a few months ago so the sweets in the display may have changed. Numerous bloggers raved about the coffee, Ash, the coffee aficionado has yet to try it, given how fine a barista Ai is, it would be ridiculous not to try an order of the well-known wattleseed maccacino, I strongly believe this is worth a mention, and that a tasting is in due order for those who have yet to undergo this endeavour.

Here’s a man being pulled along on a skateboard by his dog, poor dog and think of how dangerous it is for them to be on a road in Sydney. Like I’ve mentioned, it was bleeding hot and yet the dog seemed to be enjoying the exercise, but YOU SHOULD NOT USE YOUR DOG AS A COACH. Am I being too grandma-like about this? Let me know if you agree or disagree by commenting below, and would you pay a little extra to eat at a place like Milk Bar or opt for a fast-food chain?

Milk Bar By Cafe Ish on Urbanspoon

Opening hours:

Mon – Fri 6:30am – 5pm


Sat – Sun 9am – 4pm


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  1. Ashlamo

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