Malaysian Food Blog, Travel, Diving & More

After lunch at Red Silks in Chinatown, like most people who has nothing better to do, we look for a cup of after meal coffee and a place to chill out. We headed up north a couple blocks to QV (Queen Victoria Building), a rather popular hangout area that houses several restaurants and a couple grocery stalls

max brenners at QV, Melbourne
Max Brenners at QV

Coffee drinking is actually quite a big thing in Australia. The annual coffee business amounts to some $3 billion, that is plenty of coffee for a population of some 21 million people. The market is a lot more mature than KL, with plenty of privately owned businesses and a few international chains.

In Malaysia, you’d go to Starbucks or Old Town, but in Melbourne, the defacto choice is Max Brenners (although you can find Starbucks, and actually even Old Town Kopitiam!), it is just convenient that there is an outlet located right in the middle of QV with a nice outdoor seating area that is sheltered from sun and wind.

milk suckao and milk chocolate at max brenners
milk suckao and cappuccino

The place is almost perpetually full, we actually had to wait for a couple minutes before landing ourselves a table. Since I was basically a tourist and Max Brenners is famous for their chocolates, Mell ordered a Milk Sukao for me, and from their website:

Suckao is the espresso of the chocolate drinks. It is a small, dense, concentrated shot of rich chocolate. The term “Suckao” is made up of two words that describe the utensil and the unique drink it contains: Suck – to draw the dense liquid through the metal tube. Kakao – the Spanish word for cocoa beans from which this rich chocolate drink is made and which determine its quality.

It is basically fresh milk (refillable) warmed by an aroma therapy size candle with chocolate chips on the side to mix. The quality of chocolate was rather high and I really liked it, not bad at all for $6.

latte and milk chocolate at max brenners
latte, KY, milk chocolate

Mell got herself a milk chocolate ($5) that comes in a “HUGMUG”. The cocoa used is originated from Venezuela, creamy and tasty. The hugmug is specially designed for chocolate drinks at Max Brenners, to be used for hugging with both hands, perfect for the rather chilly weather when we were there.

carol, margaret, and mellissa at max brenners
Carol, Margaret, and Mellissa with her hugmug

Carol and Margaret got themselves Cappuccino and Cafe Latte ($3.30 each), and both the drinks were better than the same offered by the likes of Starbucks or Coffeebeans in Malaysia. Part of the reason being that the milk used here is so much fresher and tastier.

We ended up going to Max Brenners a few more times, meeting up friends and sampling different types of drinks along the way (the coconut + lychee drink was awesome, and the magic waffle balls very interesting). It was sort of a meeting point for Mell and her friends there, for obvious reasons. Good drinks, nice environment, affordable prices.

queen elizabeth building, melbourne
Max Brenners is located at the heart of QV

Max Brenners has over a dozen branches in Australia, a couple in New York, Philippines, Israel, and there’s even one in Singapore at Esplanade Mall on Raffles Ave.

Max Brenners
Queen Victoria Building
25-27 Red Cape Lane,
Level 2, QV Square,
210 Lonsdale Street
Melbourne VIC 3000

GPS: -37.810657,144.965587
Tel: +61 3 9663 6000

Discuss : Max Brenners is not Starbucks

  1. Mellissa

    Max Brenner for hot chocolate, Cafenatics for coffee please! 😀 It’s very tragic we don’t get good coffee in Malaysia – Starbucks pales in comparison to the yummyness that is Cafenatics!

  2. aeroplane1234

    amazing…. the crowd and coffee are awsome.

  3. I remember QV. Thanks for all the great memories buddy. 🙂

  4. After tried the coffee at Max Brenner’s and others in Melbourne, Starbucks is just like… nothing! 😛
    Love the coffee there… and missed Margie’s coffee (but not serve on empty stomach la) hehehe

  5. Max Brenner is obviously not Starbucks… but Chocz is something like it wor.. I have a feeling that Max Brenner is going to come to K.L. one fine day, since I think our sweet teeth and Chocz’s success would entice them to set up shop here. I went to a chocoate place on Chapel Street – can’t remember if it was a Max Brenner but it was quite happening. You should visit Chapel Street at night next time you go to Melbourne (or did you??) – it’s got this Bangsar or Desa Hartamas vibe, but with swankier cars around.

  6. Mellissa,
    Chocolate & coconut lychee drinks 😀

    ya a very nice hang out.

    Huai Bin,
    You’re welcome 😀

    Hahhaa empty stomach = lausai 😛

    I heard there’s a problem as Max Brenners is own by jews.. or something. :S

  7. I miss coffee in Melbourne. There wasn’t a Gloria Jeans, Coffee Bean or Starbucks in sight!

    The coffee was brewed perfectly and frothy milk was to die for!

    Not only that, you could get a cappu for < AUD3.

    *sigh*.. When will I go back there again…

  8. KY! I hate you (again and again)
    I love Max Brenner! Sigh, too bad they’re not in Malaysia.

    Babe, why don’t you open a franchise here?

  9. i miss australian milk

  10. im off to Melbourne next month. wooooohooo.. I will definitely go to Max Brenner for sure.. woooooooooooooooooooooohooooooooooo 🙂

  11. Hmmmmm real coffee, at least a few places in Malaysia serve illy now which is not bad.

  12. beetrice

    woohoo! finally Max Brenners! 😀

    why no strawberries and chocolate dip wannn…haha…

  13. Angie Tan,
    Yah, very few global chains doing well there.

    Aqma Anis,
    I wish I could too, but you know, it needs money and all. :S

    Yaaa me too!

    sue me,
    Nice! 😀

    Yah illy’s actually quite nice! 😀

    Because strawberry makes me look gay 😛

  14. you could hop over to the first shop of max brener at Melbourne Central Shopping Center since its just another street away if the QV branch is full 😛


  15. Ah, read about this in Nicole’s blog. Seems like a popular spot for coffee in Melbourne.

  16. i tried the suckao when the first time i have max brenner… i enjoy sucking it hahahaha ok I shall try the coconut and lychee

  17. flubear,
    True! 😀

    Simon Seow,
    Yaa it is.

    Oh you enjoy sucking it ya? 😛

  18. suck kao kao wtf..LOL

    old town kopitiam wtf..damn rich right these fellas..

  19. Feedmelah sue

    This brings back soo many memories. I used to LOVE Max Brenners. I went there often during my uni days in Melbourne. I wish they’ll open one here in KL, but I don’t think it’ll be as good, cause nothing can beat sipping hot chocolate on a cold winter’s day. The closest we can get is Singapore.

  20. Ooh I must have a cup of suckao and I guess it’s so good, I’ll suck to the last drop!

  21. ah, wheres this cafenatics?!?!!!

    never knew the milk for suckao was refillable o.O

    shit. i need to experience melbourne for real when i return :S

  22. There’s another one there which is quite famous right called the Coffee Club. Haven’t taste the coffee there though

  23. u should try kokoblack in melbourne.. its better than max brenner

  24. Yatz,
    Hahaha, yah don’t praypray with old town!

    Well, maybe they can blast the air conditioning here or something 😛

    Make it happen! Though I don’t know anything not expensive can still satisfy you anymore, hahahaa.

    Cafenatics is at QV too, just a few doors down!

    Ooo I haven’t been to that one.

    OoO interesting.

  25. Jade Zheng

    looking at mell’s pic holding the cup warms my heart! XD

  26. shaoweii

    wah Melbourne also got Old town! haha

  27. omg have to fly there for a cup of coffee… when nuffnang going to pay me more man~~~ jking la… maybe when i decided to go UK or Aussie for my degree i will double check their coffee shops around the neighbourhood~~

  28. woaahh!! miss max B alot.. one of a great place to hang out during back in those days. making me remembering the old days. 🙂

    you should try the pancake with chocolate and strawberry on top…

  29. zomfgwtfbbq

    Reason why coffee is better in australia is that in Australia, high-end cafes like these have trained Baristas which actually know how to texture milk unlike most donkeys who work in Malaysia.

    Milk I don’t think really plays a factor in my opinion, but if what I think is right, cafes like the one you mentioned use 3% fat content fresh milk, which would produce the best texture when steaming it under the steamwand.
    Thie milk also would have been chilled below 10 deg C (minimum) and then steamed till it reaches just bout 50degs C as so you won’t burn the milk proteins and cause it to separate from the water content in the milk which would give you very undesirably thin, watery piss shit flavor of coffee. (I get this type of coffee a lot in uni down here in kangarooland).

    Most people will fuck up the steaming process by just heating the milk without taking into consideration to bleeding the steamwand first (to get rid of any trapped moisture) and also not consider that the position of the steam-wand with relation to the milk levels.they fail to take care and precision in not overheating the milk and to ensure that there is a swirling action around so that the milk is incorporated with the hot air. The result if all the above is actually done and done properly is a taste is richer in a sense because of the air being mixed in the milk.

    You would tend to notice that milk based coffees in malaysia have little to no foam on the top especially for flat whites or lattes (THERE IS NO TECHNICAL DIFFERENCE, if you are picky a latte has slightly less volume of coffee ratio per milk but by 5ml or something only.) you would tend to notice it to be very thin at the top, and if not very light as all that really came out is inconsistent bubbles which taste like frothed air.

    While on the other hand, true milk based coffees, if the milk textured right, would have very consistent micro-foam on the top (about 1cm or just under that) which shows the milk has been textured right and that the entire coffee has a consistent smooth velvety sort of taste.

    That’s just a quick summary of what good coffee is, and yes I used to work at a cafe.

  30. Jade Zheng,
    Sweet ;D

    Hahha yah, I was surprised too.

    Hahaha make it happen!

    Ooo, pancake you say, maybe next time 😀

    Ok that’s really one of the most interesting comments I’ve seen in a while. Thanks for the input. 🙂

  31. hi KY! wow your Melbourne pictures are soooooooooo wonderful and nice! 🙂 Besides Max Brenners; SEDAPnya! Haha! I love their chocolate fondue a lot! 🙂

  32. mMMmMmm i heart max brennars!

  33. foodcrazee

    guess all in all American sux in their coffee. . . .lolz

  34. Ee Vonn,
    Thanks thanks. Yaa they serve very good chocolate items 😉


    but their business sense is still very good tho! 😀

  35. i am always fascinated on how they design the cappuccinos and all.. hehe

  36. zomfgwtfbbq

    @ Irvine : It’s all to do with free flow pouring first, you can watch people design latte art on youtube and watch their techniques. People start off with rosettas before moving onto other patterns.

  37. irvine,
    zomfgwtfbbq just answered your question, I didn’t know myself either. 😀

  38. Kang Yin

    OMG! I went to Max B too! And also Mekong! They are just awesome!

    AND YOU KNOW WHAT?! Actually we were on the same plane to Melbourne that day! I saw you sitting 2 rows in front of me! I think you did see me,but couldn’t recognize me cause this is my first time leaving comment here. 😛 But I think our eyes meet once! And how funny it is,my name is KY too! XD

  39. Kang Yin,
    What a coincident, you should have said hi! 😀

  40. Haha. Sorry cause I am not sure whether is that really you. When I first spot you I was thinking why your face look so familiar! Maybe is like what people always says,real person looks different from pictures! Haha. 😛

    But not too late to say HI now is it? 😀

  41. Kang Yin,
    Well next time then! And of course it’s never too late. 😉

  42. […] other corner is a cafe, mostly locally owned and operated with some international chains like Max Brenners. Restaurants and breakfast places like too usually serves excellent coffee (MART 130 is an absolute […]

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