Alleyways are traditionally those dark, seedy, urban pathways you want to avoid. They mean trou-ble. They’re typically the go-to for shady people carrying out shady dealings. But when you walk past an alleyway mysteriously lit with blue fairy lights, curiosity will probably get the better of you. After a few twists and turns, this George Street alleyway leads to RDC- an intriguing car park cafe.
RDC is short for Rez de Chaussee, French for ‘Ground Floor’. The cafe’s interior feels like some-thing between a wine cellar and a basement lounge. The low roof inside gives the cafe a sense of intimacy and seclusion. RDC is just a stone’s throw from the Dunedin’s main street, but when you visit you almost forget you’re in at the heart of the CBD.
RDC is outfitted with a range of beautiful, retro furniture. The cafe’s decor is eclectic, but not clut-tered. A rabbit is perched next to the counter, a porcelain set of ancient Chinese teapot rests upon a cinderblock book case and a Tin Tin cut out grins at you from the front door. Just being inside RDC is as interesting as getting there.
One of RDC’s highlights is its coffee. The coffee is roasted by Wendy, the owner of RDC and the Fat Cat roastery. Her award winning blend has been 8 years in the making, which stands testament to its impressive flavour. It is a full-bodied, medium to dark roast with chocolatey tones throughout. Unlike some blends, it is very consistent, holding its flavour in the cup until the last sip. Wendy al-so bakes all of the cafe’s food- a delicious range of scones, bagels, muffins and cakes.
RDC feels genuine. It’s not trying to be anything other than it is. It’s hardly signed on the street and Wendy admits that it’s low-key, understated vibe is an integral part of the cafe’s charm. The cafe is open from Monday to Friday, 7am-3pm. So go for an adventure, look for the blue lights and see if you can find one of Dunedin’s hidden gems.
Post submitted by Sam Fraser