Atomica, a long time staple of Boundary Street in West End, has been in business for well over a decade now. The cafe everyone who knows West End knows about has done the same thing for years, and does not look like it will be changing any time too soon, which isn’t a bad thing. Not at all.
While Atomica does not necessarily exude any certain elegance or pretentious sophistication, with the oddly shaped mirrors reflecting the myriad of colourful posters of the opposite wall, it does exactly what it says on the tin. Delivering great customer service, with great food and coffee, in a fun and bustling atmosphere. It has, if you will excuse the pun, nailed what it sets out to do on a molecular level (get it?).
Speaking to the owner and chef, Dan Sykes, he explains a little more of the successes and appeals behind Atomica. Having been trading for 15 years, Dan took the helm almost 11 years ago. As such, operating in the same spot for such a time, they have become one of the most recognisable cafes in West End. “Everyone knows us, all the locals know us,” Dan tells, emphasising the importance of community in West End. Recognising this, he has played towards the community spirit with great personal service, and in turn reaped in the rewards with a healthy body of regulars. “We are very personal, we have a lot of regulars; 80 per cent of customers we know by name,” Dan added.
As the years have progressed, there has not been a great deal of changes in the menu, keeping to the staples and doing them well. Using local – and I mean very local produce – with the furthest coming from Toowoomba, the food is as fresh and as tasty as possible. Trying the fruit toast, which is accompanied with a helping of ricotta and honey, you can really appreciate the rustic flavours of the fruits and nuts, combining to the sweetness of the honey and slight tartness of ricotta. “It’s just quality!” Dan exclaims, referring to the food; to which he is driven to deliver the best for many more years. “We just keep plugging on, and keep doing things well.” This ‘doing things well’ continues with the coffee, made from a Merlot blend. Opting for a flat white this warm morning, its rich deep flavour was the perfect accompaniment to the fruit toast, kickstarting the morning in the best possible way.
Atomica is open everyday, apart from Tuesday.
Photos by Prue Thomson