The Flavour Report with Derek Goforth: Sampling the offerings and ambience at AJ’s Beach Cafe

Derek GoforthGeraldton Guardian
AJ's Beach Cafe serves up coffee, shakes, bratwurst and coastal views.
Camera IconAJ's Beach Cafe serves up coffee, shakes, bratwurst and coastal views. Credit: Derek Goforth

There’s nothing quite like the salty smell of a sea breeze mixed with the aroma of freshly ground coffee beans and sizzling bratwursts.

AJ’s Beach Cafe sits in the area just off Stella Maris Drive, next to Midalia’s Beach. Specialising in bratwurst, homemade cakes and cupcakes, with of course a variety of coffees, AJ’s is a great place to stop by with the family as part of a beach trip, Sunday walk or bike ride.

Still in its infancy AJ’s has gathered a lot of support from the rather picky Geraldton coffee crowd.

For us our choices were bratwurst, hot chips with mustard and a thick shake, filling our lunchtime hunger without breaking the bank (I hoped anyway).

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At under $30 for the lot it seemed good value. The bratwurst came with the choice of onions, sauerkraut and some tangy German mustard (we went for all three!). The bread was fresh and light, the sausage well-cooked with nice chargrill marks. The onion and sauerkraut capped it off nicely. If anything, I would love the sausage to be on the spicier side, but I get that this may not be to everyone’s taste.

The chips were as they should be — crisp, hot and plenty of them. AJ’s “special spice” is a nice addition, but it would have been good to have the spice on the side.

The milkshake was acceptable but lacking in the expected strawberry taste. It was creamy and thick but didn’t smack me with fresh berry flavour.

The service as usual was fast and courteous, especially the nice fella serving us, whose happy greeting came across as friendly but not pushy (as we had people behind us). I did miss Alex (AJ himself) though, he adds to the ambience, his booming Germanic tones sweeping across the foreshore.

AJ's Beach Cafe on the foreshore.
Camera IconAJ's Beach Cafe on the foreshore. Credit: Derek Goforth

Alex and his team have aimed to provide a nice stop for folk to either grab a coffee-to-go or to relax and unwind — eating, drinking and listening to the waves crashing.

I do think Alex and the AJ’s crew have missed a trick though. The main selling point for the cafe (second only to its location on the beachfront) is Alex himself and the inclusion of German food. But you would be forgiven for not realising that German food was on the menu at all.

I think offering a wider range of German fare would be a real selling point and a way to make the cafe really stand out against the competition in the area.

Overall AJ’s is well worth a visit, even if you only get to try the one type of wurst!

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