Sydney cafe named most Instagrammable in the world

Speedos Cafe's beautified brunches. Image source: @speedoscafe via Instagram

North Bondi’s Speedos Cafe has been named the most Instagrammable cafe in the world by Big 7 Media’s travel site. 

Big 7 Travel, which has a dedicated “Instagrammable spots” pulldown tab, wrote that, “Speedos serves some of the most beautiful food you’ll ever see – all hues of the rainbow feature on the menu.”

Located on “one of the most iconic beaches in the world,” the colourful food and waterfront views helped it climb to number one, beating other beautiful cafes in London, Los Angeles, Hanoi, Bali and Dubai.

In the top 50 list, the Kettle Black in Melbourne, originally owned by the Mulberry Group but recently sold to the Darling cafe group, was the only one other Australian cafe was mentioned, at number 20. 

“In recent years, Instagram has started to massively influence where people go on holidays, what they wear and what they eat – especially where they eat,” the article continued. “Instagrammable cafes have popped up all over the world with decor, dishes and drinks that are made for the gram’.”

Speedos opened at Bondi in 1928, but has changed owners several times since. Now, it has gained 46,000 instagram followers by staying at the forefront of online trends to create photographable, beautified food for locals and tourist.

The “rainbow” menu is caters to the health-focused and the hedonistic – both extremes highly Instagrammable. 

On the menu, the $22.90 cornflake crusted brioche with white chocolate confetti, vanilla custard, berries, pistachio crumble, lime mascarpone and maple is labelled with the hashtag #instaporn.

Speedos' "#worldfamouspancakes". Image source: @speedoscafe via Instagram

Their “#worldfamouspancakes” with caramelised banana, sliced dragonfruit, kiwifruit, figs and strawberries, and edible pansies served on a pink plate are also flagged with diners as instaporn, and are one of their most photographed dishes. 

Venues designed for photos first, flavour second are a growing phenomenon. Earlier this year one new Melbourne venue called Pink. The Restaurant. was slammed on social media for devaluing hospitality by pandering to influencers.

Owner Darren Male happily admitted that the restaurant and its food and drink offerings were designed to look good in photos, and, in a press release, a spokesperson for the restaurant said, "Pink creates undeniably ‘insta-worthy’ moments to inspire and celebrate the true beauty of everyone who dines at their pink tables."

8bit Burgers owner Shayne McCallum also said that Instagram is a huge part of their business now, since opening in 2014. 

“We pride ourselves on being very Instagrammable. The colours, the box, which we designed for our burgers to sit in,” McCallum told Foodservice. 

Ume Burger owner Kerby Craig looks at it differently. “Influencers love food as much as chefs,” he told Foodservice, but “it becomes this weird little ecosystem of influencers [who] come in, and because they want something that their fan base wants, then that influences the business. So the [restaurant] starts doing it, and basically you pigeonhole yourself into the market. But these [influencers], you can’t satisfy them. They just want more and more.”