Sunday, July 19, 2009

Sydney Rocks Aroma Festival - rock on!

Don't you just love days like this - sunny, bright, filled with convivial coffee-seeking crowds wandering the traffic-free streets. Welcome to the Rocks Aroma Festival for 2009.

In a city that is filled with festivals, this one celebrates 'coffee, chocolate, tea + spice'. It was held in the Rocks district of Sydney, redolent with convict-built structures and cobbled laneways.

We went fairly early, and it was not too crowded yet.
The first (and only) coffee we got was a mocha from PeaBerrys coffee. Nicely made, with a full-bodied flavour. Nice.

There was also a coffee stall next door, called yukk. Not sure about that name...

Coffee from PeaBerrys; or coffee from yukk?

There was some food for sale, mainly the sweet variety, cupcakes and so on. These berry/chocolate and mango mini pavlovas were very photogenic:

Cute pavolvas (forgotten the name of the company)

There were also plenty of tea stalls promoting the humble tea leaf - as a tea drinker, I found these interesting, but there weren't many samples to be had. I got a sample of Madame Flavour tea from the Good Food and Wine Show that I am keen to try again, but they weren't here, as far as I could see.

Stall selling chai; another stall with an opened flower bud tea in glass

A break for lunch saw us at the Lowenbrau stand, where I had a nibble of the 40cm hotdog ($10). It was served in a sweetish bun, and was alright. They also had available pea and ham soup with chorizo, and a massive meatloaf in a bun ($8).

Food for sale from Lowenbrau Keller

I needed something more, so a stop at La Renaissance patisserie provided a beef burgundy pie. It was full of delicious meaty chunks drenched in red wine. Yum. I ate it in a laneway while reading a wall plaque about Francis Greenaway's journey from convict to chief architect (did you know he probably forged the title deeds to his house in the Rocks?).
La Renaissance fortunately had a stall outside their shop, selling pies, sausage rolls and croque monsieur; pie shot; random phone box in the Rocks

The I love my chocolates stand had the most delicious-looking strawberries on skewers - so red, round and luscious:

Strawberry and marshmallow skewers (can be dipped in chocolate) from I love my chocolate

Flowerfruits sells amazing chocolate-dipped fruit, arranged in baskets and boxes. Very artistic and delightful...

Gorgeous arrangement from

The Aroma Festival also had an area called 'Flavours of the World' - think gozleme, Turkish coffee, etc.

Chinese musical performers on stage; camel rides (!?!); Turkish coffee; the lack of cool drinks for sale meant that the ice cream van under the Harbour Bridge did a roaring trade

As we were about to leave, we passed by this 'coffee masterpiece' produced by the Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority, Grinders Coffee and Dairy Farmers.

It is made of coffees ranging from long blacks to lattes. Amazing!

A fantastic day, can't wait for next year's!


  1. Wow, I can't believe they constructed a Mona Lisa out of coffee cups! Looks like we missed out big time - so many droolworthy treats!

  2. Didn't end up making it to this so thanks for the pictorial journey :) Love the Mona Lisa pic - what a fantastic concept and so well executed too!

  3. Oh woooww you are speeeddyy! Great to bump into you hee hee and great recap! I can't believe I missed that GIANT Mona Lisa though 0_o!?!?!

  4. Love that first picture and who knew that it became Mona Lisa! That's so inspired! Great and fast coverage of the day-I felt like I was there! :D

  5. That Mona Lisa is such a great idea, I love it! I should have gone but my cold & the crowds scared me off.

  6. I was at last year's Aroma Festival but sadly am abroad at the moment so missed this year's. Wow, looks like they took it up a notch - the Mona Lisa is wonderful!

  7. Oh the Mona Lisa "artwork" is genius!

  8. I love the coffee Mona Lisa, it's brilliant. The chocolate strawberry flowers look pretty impressive too!

  9. Love the coffee cup Mona Lisa. Thanks for capturing it so well for us who didn't manage to get there.

  10. Wow, that Mona Lisa made from coffee cups is amazing! Great photography!

  11. hi Zina - it was very worth going to this year, and the weather was fantastic.

    hi Helen - you're welcome. I usually rely on you for updates!

    hi FFichiban - great to see you too! The Mona Lisa was at the bottom of the stairs of the oseas terminal, near where we bumped into each other.

    hi Lorraine - thanks, my work here is done!

    hi Steph - hope you're better now. It wasn't too crowded to start with, but it filled up later.

    hi Yasmin - yes, it seemed bigger (and more popular than previous years). Are you getting to any festivals where you are?

    hi Trisha - yes, it's most inspired!

    hi Arwen - yes, the 'arrangement' would be a great gift, too.

    hi Ellie - you're welcome. I'm glad it was worth it, too!

    hi Rilsta - thanks so much (re. the photos!)

  12. Thanks for sharing those photos. Especially love those ones of the Coffee Lisa :)