Hi Redwood and Captain Buckets, I was recently at the Merlo Roasting House at Ferry Road Markets and they have lost their best barista (Reyne) so not their usual high standard. I also tried Bumbles(Merlo) at Budd's Beach while out there and it was reasonably good. Have tried Bellago's(DiBella) as well and liked that Dulce Sappore blend. I found CBuckets impression of the Deck at Currumbin to be interesting as the barista (owner??) can really "nail" a Merlo on her day. Have also tried Le Monde but I can make a pretty good Vittoria on my home machine. Will check out Little Lido and let you know.
At Easter, with the usual good spots closed for the holiday and Ferry Road off the boil I went to Niche (Merlo) and enjoyed the experience. Look, if you like a Merlo and will travel to central GC, then try these 3, all within a minute of each other!
Piccolo( Mermaid Beach,Wega/Mazzer combo).....one of my top 10 Australian cafe experiences.
Vintage Espresso( Alfred St. Wega/Mazzer combo) . Retro 50's furniture, mirrors and Chandelliers....the little lady will be impressed!
Niche (Dawn Ave, Wega/Saeco combo) A budget fit-out and a barista who finishes every sentence with an aaaay, but he is good.
Also, expect a crowd, as these places are popular with the locals and well patronised by GC sports celebs.....e.g. I even saw Nathan Corbett (Google him) on my only visit to Niche!......just don't get into an argument with him over coffee!