The Grounds of the City

4.3
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1655 reviews
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$40 and under
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Café

Top tags:

Casual
The Grounds of the City, the second outpost from the team behind The Grounds of Alexandria, is bringing soul back to the CBD with old-school service and charm. Located in the heart of the CBD and bustling with activity, The Grounds of the City is tailor-made for a marvellous time; no matter the occasion. Start your day right as our baristas expertly serve up The Grounds house-roasted espresso and filter coffees, or end it in the best possible way and cosy in with our selection of cocktails and a dinner menu that features something for everyone. You’ll find our coffee sommelier at The Barista’s Bar ready to take you through a tailored coffee experience, and our tea lady roaming the room with a trolley adorned with fresh coffee, our selection of ethically sourced teas and cakes.

Special Offers

High Tea - $35 per person

Settle into the city and spoil yourself with all the delights of our High Tea. Our seasonal menu includes a curated daily selection of house-made sweet & savoury offerings, fresh from The Grounds very own Bakery & Patisserie.

Terms and Conditions: High tea offering is $35 per person, or $40 with a glass of sparkling wine. Bookings must be secured with a credit card (our team will call to confirm) and must be confirmed by 11am on the day of your reservation. Bookings cancelled within a 24 hour period will be charged the full amount. All details can be found at our website.

Valid For: 1 - 20 people

Starts: 18 July 2019

Ends: 31 May 2020

Availability: Sun 14:30-17:00
Mon 14:30-16:30
Tue-Sat 14:30-17:00

What 1655 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.3based on recent ratings
4.2
Food
4.3
Service
4.4
Ambience
3.9
Value
Noise · Moderate
86% of people would recommend it to a friend
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CM
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall4Food5Service5Ambience5

Everything was great apart from the girl at the front counter, allowing people to push in etc and when questioned just blew it off and was snippy at me, other than that great place and great service once we where inside

OT
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall1Food1Service3Ambience4

Good for taking photos, but thats it.

OT
Sydney / NSW
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall4Food5Service4Ambience4

The Grounds of the City

IM
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall3Food1Service3Ambience4

good coffee good ambience. service average no attention after order given. bacon precooked like hotel buffet. hash brown cold soggy. .mushrooms not seasoned and precooked and cold. all very average

TC
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

This was a cold booking, we had never heard of The Grounds of the City before. We were looking for a place for breakfast on the first day of a weekend visit to the city. We googled best breakfast in the CBD and went through the list. The Grounds of the City stood out from the rest and we decided to book, boy were we glad we did!!!
From our first look and the greeting we got it was a stand out. The menu was not the same as what was on the web but in the end that didn't matter. Our choices were more than amazing and before we even finish breakfast we had decided to book again for the following morning. The staff were friendly, helpful and chatty, it's what I like to see in an eating establishment, not stuffy folk that think they are too good to talk to you but make you feel at home and when three staff stand at your table it's like family.
We are already looking for an excuse to go back and tantalize our taste buds again. Can't wait for the next time!!

IM
Sydney / NSW
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall1Food1Service1Ambience3

Very disappointing high tea! Not enough savoury options and the scones were not cooked properly, we had to send them back and wait 30 minutes and they came back toasted - not what we expected at all from “the grounds”.... very disappointing

M
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall3Food5Service5Ambience3

The place was full and it was too loud inside, the tables are too close to each other, it was hard to keep a conversation without yelling. And it’s an abuse that you have a surcharge for card payments. The only good thing was the waiter and the steak sandwich.

AH
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall4Food3Service5Ambience5

Great attentive servers and beautiful interiors. Pasta was a bit plain and had giant fish bone in our grenade. Cake was amazing.

AF
Brisbane / QLD
4 reviews
Dined 5 days ago
Overall4Food5Service3Ambience5

Coffee was cold and it took 15 minutes to arrange a hot replacement

The Grounds of the City
Responded 3 days ago

Hi AussieFoodie, Thank you for the review and apologies for the coffee, we will do better next time!! Best regards, The Grounds of The City team

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d
Sydney / NSW
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall3Food4Service5Ambience4

Decor is great and service is excellent, the breakfast is good but nothing special that you can't get in other good cafe's for half the price. $22 for smashed avocado with tomatos and pouched egg is just excessive, French toast and smoothie was good but pricey and nothing special, the coffee wasn't hot enough.

The Grounds of the City
Responded 3 days ago

Hi there, Thank you for your review. We look forward to seeing you again. Kind regards, The Grounds of The City team

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L
Sydney / NSW
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Great food and coffe. Very attentive service. Love The Grounds.

The Grounds of the City
Responded 3 days ago

Hi Lizzy, Thank you so much for the 5 stars and the lovely comments! We look forward to seeing you again very soon. Kind regards, The Grounds of The City team

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GO
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall3Food3Service4Ambience5

Hi There,
I’m a vegetarian and found the menu with very limited options, but overall the experience was great. Thank you, Gravi

The Grounds of the City
Responded 3 days ago

Hi Gravi, Thank you for your review. Your comments have been passed on to or menu development team and will certainly be taken into account when designing our next menu! Kind regards, The Grounds of The City team

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OT
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall5Food4Service3Ambience3

It was so good I’m going back today! Great food and quick service

The Grounds of the City
Responded 3 days ago

Hi there, Thanks so much for your review, we look forward to welcoming you back soon, so we can turn those 4's into 5's! Kind regards, The Grounds of The City team

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LC
Sydney / NSW
1 review
Dined on 20 January 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Amazing food and even better cocktails. Very friendly staff, highly recommend!

The Grounds of the City
Responded 3 days ago

Hi Loren, Thank you very much for your lovely comments and the 5 stars, we can't wait to see you again! Kind regards, The Grounds of The City team

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AB
1 review
Dined on 20 January 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Love the croissants!
Coffees are spot on and you are left to chat without being hurried!

The Grounds of the City
Responded 3 days ago

Hi Alvia, Thank you very much for your lovely comments and the 5 stars, we can't wait to see you again soon! Kind regards, The Grounds of The City team

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CC
Sydney / NSW
1 review
Dined on 19 January 2020
Overall3Food2Service5Ambience3

The service was great and that absolutely made the experience. The tea we ordered was well over brewed and while my breakfast was great my partners was not. I always see a line out the front and so we booked to go but I would describe the food as overrated. It was also freezing in there and the aircon was almost gusty. As I said, our waitress was fantastic and she absolutely made the experience. But we will not be rushing back to the grounds again.

LA
1 review
Dined on 19 January 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Was amazing experience! Staff were so lovely. Food was delicious!

The Grounds of the City
Responded 3 days ago

hi Laura, Thank you very much for the 5 stars and your lovely comments, we look forward to seeing you again! Kind regards, The Grounds of The City team

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JA
Sydney / NSW
4 reviews
Dined on 18 January 2020
Overall3Food3Service2Ambience3

Service was really disappointing. The American waitress I had when I first arrived just didn't want to be there. Didn't make any effort to smile. I continually had to flag waitstaff down to take my order ... and even had to ask for water. Food was great but service really lets you down.

F
Milwaukee
10 reviews
Dined on 18 January 2020
Overall3Food3Service3Ambience3

Good place for a casual get together with friends.

M
1 review
Dined on 18 January 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

All mu guests were impressed with the atmosphere, quality of service and cuisine of the Grounds of the City.

M
1 review
Dined on 17 January 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

The waiter from Mexico was fantastic! A real gentlemen who knows how to provide superior service to his guests and knows how to make them feel special :-)

LI
1 review
Dined on 17 January 2020
Overall5Food4Service5Ambience5

We regularly hold breakfast meetings at the venue, however all are becoming increasingly agitated by the inability of the knives supplied, to be able to cut through the sour dough, that the eggs are served on.

R
Sydney / NSW
1 review
Dined on 16 January 2020
Overall1Food1Service1Ambience4

Very disappointing experience. My companion and I are both (visibly) pregnant so chose TGOTC for a convenient lunch catch up. Despite booking and arriving on time we had to stand and wait for 15 mins before being seated.
Once seated we asked for water which took 10 mins and two reminders despite being right next to the water filling station.
I ordered the ploughmans salad and being pregnant I flagged that the chicken needed to be served hot (cold meat is not recommended by health guidelines). The dish arrived with cold chicken. When I queried with the waiter who rudely told me he needed to check with the kitchen. The waiter and chef proceeded to have a lengthy discussion within sight of our table, with the waiter returning to say “the chef says the chicken is perfectly cooked”....not the issue. Again I emphasized that I was pregnant and that’s not suitable and please could the chicken portion just be heated up. The waiter (again in a rude tone) said “fine we’ll just take off the chicken”. Given this would just leave me with bread and cheese I went to the galley to speak to the chef. They finally agreed to heat the chicken in the pan. It arrived and tasted lovely but super disappointing to have to work so hard to get a safe meal when I’d been so specific in the first place. Very few of the light meals are pregnancy Suitable, suggest TGOTC review the menu to make it more inclusive.

JE
1 review
Dined on 14 January 2020
Overall3Food4Service2Ambience3

Tables too crammed in, too close to adjacent patrons. Service was poor, possibly due to lack of staff, didnt get my first drink order until half way through my main. No option of a second drink. Hard to get water topped up too, very loud atmosphere. However gluten free food options were great and food was good.

NR
1 review
Dined on 14 January 2020
Overall4Food5Service5Ambience4

The Grounds of the City was a lovely restaurant, food and service were great.
What lets the experience down is the stuffiness and noise level. It is very hard to have a conversation.
Also the bathrooms are external to the restaurant and are public toilets which were located quit far from the restaurant and were not very clean.
I would still recommend this for a place to enjoy a good meal, not good for business meetings though.

LL
Melbourne / VIC
2 reviews
Dined on 12 January 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience4

Fabulous lunch with the ladies, great food, amazing service and what a great space! Beautiful.

AW
1 review
Dined on 11 January 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Took my friends from overseas for dinner as recommended by my daughter and I made the right choice. We love everything about the the place. We will return.

P
1 review
Dined on 11 January 2020
Overall1Food3Service1Ambience4

The service was terrible and the food was cold. The manager did comp our entrees and a round of drinks but I still wouldn't go back.

SG
1 review
Dined on 11 January 2020
Overall4Food4Service4Ambience4

Our first time there and we were pleasantly surprised with the booths, the stylish decor and the atmosphere. The booths were roomy and gave an element of privacy which we liked. The staff were friendly and took the food allergies very seriously otherwise it could have been a disaster. Service was good but we had a little difficulty understanding the Irish accent of our server but she was OK with repeating herself. We had entrees only with fries on the side and the size of the dishes meant we were satisfied without having mains. Overall a good experience and we will be back.

SS
Sydney / NSW
1 review
Dined on 10 January 2020
Overall2Food4Service2Ambience3

Always seems to be understaffed as service is always poor (staff are friendly but there just doesn't seem to be enough of them to take orders). Suited for tourists or a casual catch up when time is on your side. The one saving grace is the food which is quite good (but you are paying tourist prices). I wouldn't recommend for work related meetings as you just won't be able to get in and out quick enough.

HP
1 review
Dined on 10 January 2020
Overall3Food3Service2Ambience4

I like the menu but on arrival in front of you it’s disappointing. The two scrambled eggs were small and the two toast were huge. Maple bacon was good but have had better. Hot chocolate milk was not hot enough to mix with the chocolate syrup so the fun concept deconstruction didn’t work well.
Staff are super friendly and helpful but too busy turning over tables to check if you need anything else/ more drinks etc.

t
London
3 reviews
Dined on 7 January 2020
Overall3Food3Service4Ambience4

Our fifth visit to the Grounds. Three timed for brunch and this our second for dinner. My husband and son enjoyed good T-bones, cooked perfectly and with yummy shoestring fries. I chose the grain, seed and roasted veggie salad with a buttermilk dressing and almonds. I was not impressed - waaaay too much quinoa, a major scarcity of both root veggies and seeds, both of which were the highlight when they could be tracked down. Didn't finish as a bowl if quinoa is not my idea of a decent meal.

Desert ordered was a cake for two from the bakery plus a rhubard fool. The cake came up immediately and franjly was not good. It was rock hard and clearly not fresh and the refrigeration had compounded this. They ate half between them and gave up. Fifteen minutes later and 10 after they'd finished my pud had still not arrived... why not hold back the cake until the menu pudding is ready? I don't enjoy sitting there eating way after everyone has finished.

We said we no longer wanted the fool, which was removed from the bill and then of course, despte me cancelling it, it turned up. We just took the bill and paid up.

This place is excellent for brunch but just misses the mark for dinner. Sadly, far too many superior choices out there for supper and as such we won't return, I'm afraid.

DB
1 review
Dined on 7 January 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

If you need a great central CBD cafe with excellent service, staff, food and coffee then Grounds of the City if the place. Make sure you book!

VV
London
10 reviews
Dined on 6 January 2020
Overall3Food3Service2Ambience3

Service has been inefficient and slow. The last 2 times I was there my coffee came room temperature. It is due to it been seating at the counter, waiting to be brought to the table....

SW
Sydney / NSW
1 review
Dined on 5 January 2020
Overall5Food5Service5Ambience5

Fantastic food and service, would recommend highly however if inside be prepared for the high noise level.

OT
1 review
Dined on 5 January 2020
Overall3Food1Service5Ambience5

Food was too rich and over priced, however the service was great and good coffee

C
1 review
Dined on 3 January 2020
Overall5Food5Service4Ambience5

Thoroughly enjoy each time I go to the grounds of the city. So much fun, gorgeous atmosphere, delicious food and drinks and scrumptious desserts! Highly recommend.

MP
Vancouver
1 review
Dined on 3 January 2020
Overall2Food2Service2Ambience3

Unfortunately orders were wrong, eggs overdone, toast under cooked and extras (bacon) modest in serving size.

KG
1 review
Dined on 2 January 2020
Overall4Food4Service4Ambience5

This is the fourth time I have been here, each time I cannot fault it. Would recommend it.

OT
New York Area
1 review
Dined on 2 January 2020
Overall5Food5Service4Ambience5

Exceptional food, great atmosphere and service.