The Grounds of the City

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4.2
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1304 Reviews
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$40 and under
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Modern Australian
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.
What 1304 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.2based on recent ratings
4.2
food
4.2
service
4.4
ambience
3.8
value
Noise · Moderate
86% of people would recommend it to a friend
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JG
1 review
Dined 2 days ago
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Not our first time there. We love visiting when we’re in town. Our meals were a little cold when they arrived but the flavours were amazing as usual.

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A
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

It was a good lunch experience with friends. I would love to revisit the place again.

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LW
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 3food 3service 4ambience 4

While we enjoyed the experience, I found my Spanish mackerel dish very underwhelming for $19. The service, coffee and atmosphere were good.

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R
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

beef sandwich is surprisingly good, apart from slightly salty. will recommend to friend. fried squid had a little bit too much coating. blach rice salad with avacado and tuna, soso, but defitely a light and healthy choice

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C
1 review
Dined 3 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

There's no toilet in the venue, I had to go upstairs in the shopping mall and find one. A bit annoying paying $70 for a breakfast and going to a public toilet. Despite of that, my experience was good.

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JS
Sydney / NSW
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

Consistently a great place to go anytime of the day.

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S
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 2food 1service 1ambience 4

Ambience was very good but their level of customer service was extremely bad. I clearly stated online and spoke to a customer service assistant that I want a table for two on the occasion of my anniversary and I want a greeting card stated’ mr and Mrs Chowdhury ‘! It was not there also we got the worst table in the cafe. They simply ruined my day. It’s a beautiful cafe look wise but I ll never go there again. Enough experience on my special day.

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M
Sydney / NSW
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 3food 1service 5ambience 5

Cold porridge despite providing a new bowl - staff were lovely though!

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k
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Love love every time I am in Sydney it is on my list !

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R
1 review
Dined 4 days ago
Overall 3food 3service 5ambience 2

Too noisy for what we typically look for in a restaurant. Tables were so close together you couldn't access your seat without pushing other customers over. Food was average, nothing to rave about - very simple and minimal taste for the expense paid. Staff were lovely, however we were upset that the door man turned us away for being 15 minutes early and gave us no text to return like he said they would.

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MP
Sydney / NSW
1 review
Dined 5 days ago
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 5

Such a lovely ambient venue,. a quiet Parisienne oasis in the heart of the city . From the moment we entered, the staff were very welcoming & thoughtfully took our shopping & kept it at the front desk for us ..My Brazilian waitress was very sweet . The decor is just beautiful and the atmosphere in there stunning! The food is always consistently good

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DW
New Zealand
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 3food 2service 3ambience 5

This time The Grounds wan't at it's potential best. Simple Avocado on toast failed with roughly cut chucks of cold tomato dominating the dish. Service was also very slow which was unexpected as the cafe was far from full.

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OT
Sydney / NSW
1 review
Dined 6 days ago
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

An awesome night with great food, drinks and service.

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AP
1 review
Dined on June 17, 2019
Overall 1food 3service 1ambience 4

We will start off this review giving credit where it is due. The ambiance, location and food (in general) is good.

Having said, that, the service is consistently below par, seeming to strive to hit new depths with each visit. During this most recent visit (and I do always say the last), when a guest asked if the poached egg with the avocado on toast could be scrambled instead, she was advised "We can't scramble 1 egg". Umm, really? Not possible? Not at all? Never in the history of egg preparation has someone been asked to scramble a single egg? Huh. Who knew? With no solution forthcoming for this seemingly unsolvable problem - she did what any good customer who was clearly in the wrong did - she ordered the omlette.

And we shouldn't get started on the "Greeting" staff. After we arrived at the restaurant (with a reservation made 3 days prior) we were greeted by someone who clearly wished they were anywhere else and were advised to "Wait (outside in the rain) while we check to see if your table is ready". Spoiler alert, it wasn't.

There was a bright spark in this visit - one lone member of the wait staff who was energetic, enthusiastic and helpful. He must be new. No doubt the rest of the staff will help him adopt the Grounds of the City work ethos.

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NL
1 review
Dined on June 16, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Have been a few times. Consistent food quality and service. Good coffee too. Love it

The Grounds of the City
Responded 7 days ago

Hi Nicholas, That's great to hear, thank you so much for the 5 stars! We are looking forward to seeing you again very soon! The Grounds of The City team

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KL
1 review
Dined on June 16, 2019
Overall 2food 3service 1ambience 4

Ambience is nice
Had been here once before and got to try the sponge cakes and tarts on the menu, however this time they had run out and ended up ordering the less popular items that were mediocre. Was disappointed but do understand that this is not the fault of the café - as those items are quite popular.
However the service we received this time was terrible. There was a waitress who was rude and unpleasant. Was surprised that such a coffeehouse that prides itself in its ambience and service would be okay with hiring somebody like this.

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LC
1 review
Dined on June 16, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 1

Tables were so close, noise level so loud. Very expensive for what you get. Hard to know who to ask to serve you.

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ET
1 review
Dined on June 16, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 4

Breakfast was nice, pretty standard offerings on menu. Coffee tasting platter good. Staff friendly. Suggested improvement is having two separate queues for those who made reservations and those who haven't. I would recommend to others but is not that special that I would wait in line for a table (as many seemed to).

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PD
1 review
Dined on June 16, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 4ambience 4

Whilst the atmosphere was lovely and the wait staff were very accommodating, I was disappointed to receive a meal that at best was lukewarm. This is not an inexpensive restaurant and you would expect better attention to detail.

The Grounds of the City
Responded 7 days ago

Hi Philip, Thank you for your review. I am so sorry your meal wasn't hot enough. Had you mentioned it to a member of staff, I am sure we could have rectified it for you there and then, as our managers are always around and ready to address any issues and sort them out with minimal fuss. If anything is even not to your liking in the future, please do not hesitate to bring it to our attention! Kind regards, Kat - General Manager

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OT
Sydney / NSW
1 review
Dined on June 15, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

First time at The Grounds of the City and was very impressed. Awesome cocktails, beautiful food and the service was faultless. Make sure you leave room for the trifle. The premises are just amazing....make sure you go and experience this place for yourself!!! Our waitress, Elenor, ensured we had everything we needed and made some great recommendations. What a delightful young lady.

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MT
1 review
Dined on June 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Excellent food, great service
Fantastic coffee. Had a great time
with my friends

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VD
1 review
Dined on June 14, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 3ambience 2

Tables are too close together, cramped, noisy, slow service, food disappointing.

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CK
Singapore
2 reviews
Dined on June 14, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Perfect for family - and to impress your in laws :)

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RH
1 review
Dined on June 14, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 4

but it is really noisy and the tables are too close together for comfort.

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MM
1 review
Dined on June 13, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 5ambience 4

Great place to catch up with friends. Quiet enough that you can hear each other, but if you are looking for quiet and intimate, this isn't it.

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KH
1 review
Dined on June 13, 2019
Overall 4food 5service 4ambience 5

Went here for a team lunch. Delicious meals (loved the veggie ploughmans board), fab cakes, impressive cheeseboard and great ambiance.

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B
1 review
Dined on June 12, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 4ambience 4

second time here and love the ambience and the look of this place, booked on Open Table in advance. Took a little waiting time to be seated at 6pm and we were met by a seemingly annoyed waitress who thankfully warmed up eventually. seats are a little cramped as tables are so close to each other, but easily overcome with a squeeze between tables. bustling noise so you do have to speak up to your date, but easy to understand menu, Ordered the Scotch Fillet cooked medium - cooking and sauce was on-point (would come back definitely to have this again). order sides only if you're starved, but the serving of potatoes with the meat was enough for us. ask for the bill and pay at your table. no toilets in the restaurant, but accessible in the Galleries. would definitely return and recommend, thank you team.

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WP
1 review
Dined on June 12, 2019
Overall 5food 4service 5ambience 4

Good food
Really really nice staff
Excellent service
Helpful front- of-house

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KG
1 review
Dined on June 11, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Absolutely fabulous!!

Can’t wait to dine there again

The Grounds of the City
Responded 7 days ago

Hi Kay, We are thrilled you enjoyed your experience! Looking forward to seeing you again very soon, The Grounds of The City team

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TR
Sydney / NSW
1 review
Dined on June 10, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

A wonderful place to visit - it feels like you're in another world!

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AD
1 review
Dined on June 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Delicious, fresh food with varied menu. Would definitely come back again.

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BW
1 review
Dined on June 9, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

Great location & forget where you are when you leave. Food is excellent & very attentive service. Coffee is good too!

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OT
1 review
Dined on June 8, 2019
Overall 4food 4service 4ambience 5

The feel of the place is lovely. The food was good. I think that my expectations were too high. The restaurant feels special, but the food is a bit short of special. Still, I am a big fan of the coffee.

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WF
1 review
Dined on June 8, 2019
Overall 5food 2service 4ambience 5

We celebrated my wife's birthday there recently. Staff made it a memorablel celebration for us. The service was great and food was delicious. Will definitely return.

The Grounds of the City
Responded on June 12, 2019

Hi there, Thank you for your review. We are very glad you and your wife enjoyed the visit! Kind regards, The Grounds of The City team

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K
Sydney / NSW
1 review
Dined on June 8, 2019
Overall 4food 3service 4ambience 5

Cool place to take people from out of town or if you want to impress a date.

The Grounds of the City
Responded on June 11, 2019

Hi Karina, Thank you very much for your review. Have a wonderful evening, The Grounds of The City team

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OT
1 review
Dined on June 7, 2019
Overall 1food 1service 1ambience 1

Our experience was

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DI
1 review
Dined on June 5, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 2ambience 3

The hosts of Grounds in the City has a way of making you feel unwelcome the minute you walk in the door. It marred the whole experience for us and won’t be coming back because of it. The food was fine and the servers where pleasant enough though.

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SF
1 review
Dined on June 5, 2019
Overall 5food 5service 5ambience 5

We met at The Grounds of the City for a late lunch and business meeting. All who attended enjoyed the venue immensely. The food was very good and the service attentive but not intrusive. I will book again.

The Grounds of the City
Responded on June 11, 2019

Hi Sue, Thank you so much for the wonderful review, we are thrilled you and your colleagues had a great time! See you again soon, The Grounds of The City team

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EC
1 review
Dined on June 4, 2019
Overall 3food 3service 3ambience 3

Great nourishing dishes. The fluffy sponge cake dangerously yummy. Service great.
Only draw back restaurant a little cold as the main door opened continuously.
It was a very cold day. It’s also noisy.

The Grounds of the City
Responded on June 11, 2019

Hi Elizabeth, Thank you for your review. Next time you visit, we will be happy to find a table further away from the door for you! Have a great week, The Grounds of The City Team

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e
1 review
Dined on June 4, 2019
Overall 2food 2service 2ambience 2

Not off to a good start when you arrive 10 mins early for your table and are told your table is not ready and to sit outside in the freezing cold. The menu is quite eclectic for lunch, it would be helpful to show which dishes are vegetarian. The service was quick but maybe that's to turn the tables over as quick as possible. The restaurant is very noisy, not where I would go to have a quiet long lunch.

The Grounds of the City
Responded on June 11, 2019

Hi there, My apologies for not having the table ready for you on the day of your visit. I have discussed your comments with our host team to make sure the guests are at the very least given an option to wait inside during cold winter months. Thank you for your comments and we hope to see you again soon. The Grounds of The City Team

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