Review: my favourite local cafes

Image source: The Penny Drop website

Everyone (especially uni students) are always searching for the perfect go-to brunch spot that is affordable and delicious. I have been lucky enough to find five that almost check these boxes, each are in or surrounding my local area of Box Hill. After being to quite a few brunch places over the years I definitely recommend the next few if you have never been. The great thing about breakfast or brunch places is that it does not have to take up your whole day, which is great for university students that are spending time studying for exams and assignments.

1. Rubix Cafe

Smashed avocado with poached eggs, image source: Deanna Savoia

Location: 519 Middleborough Road, Box Hill North 3129 

Hours: Monday – Friday 6:30am to 5pm

Website: Rubix Facebook page 

This cafe is located at the Kerrimuir shopping strip so the space is quite small, but that just adds to the overall community feel and cute atmosphere. The food is served quite quickly compared to other places, but still at a very high standard. There is a great sense of belonging to this cafe, as pet owners will sit outside with their pooches and others will simply sit alone with a book or be really ‘old school’ with a physical newspaper.

It was recently changed that the kitchen no longer closes at 2pm but now will stay open serving food until 5pm. This is perfect to head to after a long day at university for a quick bite to eat.

2. Red Cup Cafe 

Eggs benedict, image source: Deanna Savoia

Location: 1124 Whitehorse Road, Box Hill Vic 3128

Hours: Monday – Thursday 6:30am to 4pm, hours vary on the weekend 

Website: Red Cup Cafe online 

Perfect for getting away from the hustle and bustle of shopping strips, this cafe is surrounded by houses so it is a little more secluded compared to other cafes, giving it a more relaxing feel. The service is very fast and staff are always super friendly, which makes you feel right at home.

The menu provides a range of healthy options as well as some sweeter dishes like pancakes with berry coulis, however the prices are a little higher than the standard brunch place.

It can also be a little difficult to find parking as the spot is quite popular and does not have a set car park, so expect to walk a little to work off that ‘say cheese beef burger’ you might try for lunch.

3. The Penny Drop 

Hotcakes with berry sauce, image source: The Penny Drop website

Location: 913 Whitehorse Road, Box Hill Vic 3128

Hours: Tuesday – Thursday 7am to 5pm, hours vary on the weekend 

Website: The Penny Drop online

If you’re looking for a cafe that is more spacious than the usual cafe, then The Penny Drop is the place for you! The cafe is quite large, picturesque and located right near Box Hill Central, so it is very easy to get to if you do not drive.

The menu has a wide range of dishes so it is great way to explore different meals rather than your typical smashed avo on toast with a poached egg. Some are not often seen before at your typical cafe, for instance they have the ‘Buddha Bowl’ that consists of black rice, sweet potato, edamame, green chilli coconut broth and some other vegetables.

A downside to The Penny Drop is that the service can be a little slow, as the place is quite busy compared to the other low-key cafes. This is probably due to its location, as it is easily accessible to many that work in the Box Hill precinct and taxation office.

4. Mister + Miss Cafe 

Crushed avo, image source: Deanna Savoia

Location: 713 Whitehorse Road, Mont Albert Vic 3127

Hours: Monday – Saturday 7am to 4pm, Sunday 8am to 4pm

Website: Mister and Miss details

If you want big meals for a cheap price (who doesn’t) then this cafe is for you! With a menu for breakfast and lunch that is served all day Mister + Miss is always a great idea.

The venue includes a nice outdoor area which is perfect for getting the right lighting for your Instagram worthy photo, but also a great way for soaking up some sun as we head into warmer months. The staff always have a smile on their faces and seem to find a place for you to sit every time, even though the cafe is constantly bustling.

Only downside for me is that the freshly made smoothies and juices are quite expensive, although they are almost as filling as a meal itself.

5. Aunt Billies cafe

Eggs benedict, image source: Deanna Savoia

Location: 184 Surrey Road Blackburn Vic 3130

Hours: Monday – Friday 7am to 4pm

Website: Aunt Billies on Zomato 

If you are wanting to sit outside this cafe has an outdoor courtyard which is dog friendly, and perfect for the warmer summer days that are coming up.

Even though the food is on the more basic side – it is delicious and cooked really well, the produce is always very fresh. The service is great as it is quite fast and the chefs are always willing to add or change dishes according to your preferences.

However it can be difficult to find parking as it is right next to a church and on a main road, but yet again a walk is always good after a big lunch.


So give them a try if you think they sound like a great brunch spot, whether it is for getting out of the house and writing that 2000-word essay or catching up with friends. These relaxed low-key environments are great for almost any occasion, each have small flaws but nothing that would ever stop me from going again.


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