If you’re the type who likes your coffee and muffin with a side serve of quirky, Mishie Madhatter Cafe in Sunbury is your kind of place.

Open since early April, the cafe has an Alice in Wonderland theme, with a madly happy atmosphere generated by colourful chairs at wooden tables, bright plates and teapots and cups collected by owner Michelle Hower’s grandmother, Rene.

Michelle says she and Rene shared a dream of opening a cafe with a touch of magic, but sadly Rene passed away before it came to pass.

Michelle wanted to pay tribute to that dream – so Mishie Madhatter Cafe opened to much acclaim.

“I love seeing the looks on the children’s faces as they come through the door,” Michelle says.

“We can see they love and especially gravitate to the play area we’ve set aside for them – with lots of toys.

“Adults love our cafe, too, because after all, don’t we all enjoy a bit of ‘madness’ in a world that can be quite serious? And, with their children happily occupied, they can enjoy a treat in peace.”

Michelle’s son, Graeme, also helps in the shop. A special needs lad, he’s learning new skills and loves lending a hand a round the place.

It’s all about family – something that gives Mishie Madhatter Cafe a special vibe.

Most of the food is homemade.

A coffee and muffin can be had for just $5; with a croissant it’s $6.

Sometimes soup is on the menu, other days it might be roast pork or a potato pie. Michelle loves cooking and baking so expect to taste that in the food.

“One of our most popular dishes is the lasagne, so much so that it’s now a permanent fixture on our menu,” she says. “Kids love it as much as the grown-ups –it’s a perfect winter-warmer.”

A mum who recently visited the cafe with her daughter was thrilled with the hot chocolate served in “the cutest flamingo mug”. She said it was cheap at $5 and was “yummm”. She also commented that Michelle was so friendly and happy to have a chat, something she appreciates amid the busyness of life.

Yes, Michelle does love a chat – just another bit of wonder in Wonderland.


Mishie Madhatter Cafe, 103 Evans Arcade, Sunbury. Opens 8am-5pm Wednesday-Sunday. Inquiries: 0421 505 428 Facebook: Mishie Madhatter Cafe

Graeme whips up a coffee. (Photo supplied)

Hot chocolate in a flamingo mug.