Thanks to a strong following and online presence, The Rusty Rabbit in Darlinghurst has fared better than many other businesses during COVID-19.
“We’ve been really busy all the way through with takeaway, online, and UberEats orders,” Co-Owner Joshua Khoury says. “We built an online ordering platform before everything started, so when COVID-19 hit, we were already a step up.”
Since opening in 2014, The Rusty Rabbit has launched a second location in Burwood with a third on the way in Epping, New South Wales.
“It’s more than a café. The focus is on maintaining high-quality food, quality, and service, but there’s also a merchandise aspect – socks, jackets, shirts – that helps us stand out,” Joshua says. “It developed over time. You find your feet after a few years, find out who you are and what you do, and go from there.”
Also helping The Rusty Rabbit stand out is coffee from Toby’s Estate Coffee Roasters, that Joshua says has a “sweet, caramel-like flavour” with wide appeal.
“Toby’s Estate has been great, and we’ve been with them since day one,” he says. “We serve their single origins for all our black coffee and filter, offer batch brew on the weekend, and cold brew all year round.”
On the food side, fan favourites include the sweet potato and corn fritter, middle eastern-inspired Lamb Eggs, and “signature” pancakes, served with ricotta, strawberries, berry compote, passionfruit, pistachio, and maple syrup.
“There’s a second pancake dish we rotate each menu,” Joshua says. “This time round, it’s a cheesecake pancake with lemon curd, cream cheese, blueberries, strawberries, maple, and ginger cookie.”
The menu is scattered with pop culture references, including Dragon Ball Z-named burgers and the Pea-Kachu smashed peas. This matches the Pop Funko figures sold at and decorating the “sandstone and rugged and rusty feel” of the venue.
The café’s great food and coffee offering and eclectic style, combined with its good location, has gained The Rusty Rabbit a diverse following. This ranges from schoolkids and parents to at-home workers and retirees. “There’s a very mixed crowd and it’s because we’ve made strong connections and friendships with people in the local community,” Joshua says.
The Rusty Rabbit
252 Forbes Street, Darlinghurst, New South Wales, 2010
Open weekdays 7am to 3pm, weekends 8am to 3pm
0405 062 037
8A/27-31 Belmore Street, Burwood, New South Wales, 2134
Open weekdays 6:30am to 3pm, weekends 8am to 3pm
3/36 Oxford Street, Epping, New South Wales, 2121