Opened in 2012, Doma Cafe is owned and operated by two chefs, Takayuki Kuramoto and Takashi Yaguchi. It represents much of what is fascinating about the current food scene in Australia: the spread of vibrant and creative cooking to rural areas; the stunning ambition and quality found in the country’s cafes; and perhaps most important, the ways in which immigrant foodways are changing as they mix with this culinary landscape. The cafe’s wooden-slatted building is surrounded by weathered seating, as well as raised garden beds with wild overgrown herbs, tomatoes, and tiny pansies that decorate the desserts sold inside. Chickens wander among the tables with entitled beady stares, begging for scraps. Inside, up some ramshackle steps, a line of customers forms early at lunchtime to order at the counter and take a number. If they get there after noon they’ll spend some time outside hovering until one of the tables or benches is vacated. (A park across the street provides some needed extra seating.)

Sushi is available at lunch as prepackaged rolls to go, daily specials listed on a blackboard and freshly made hand rolls. The most economical tactic is to order one or two of the rolls from the short menu beside the cash register, but you’ll miss out on the gorgeous salads that accompany the special roll of the day.

ADDRESS: 3/6 Albert Street, Federal NSW

HOURS: Daily 7.30am - 2.30pm

PHONE: (02) 6688 4711