Soda Pony is a determinedly independent café on King Street, Newtown, a 20 minute walk from the University of Sydney campus. Locals tell us this, the “other” end of King Street, is an up-and-comer, and we’re all for small businesses breaking into new areas. It’s also the perfect distance for a hungover student to amble in between breakfast eggs and the day’s first lecture.
We wouldn’t blame you for raising a quizzical eyebrow at the name. All but Brat Pack film fanatics will need reminding of Sodapop and Ponyboy from 1987’s The Outsiders, and that’s not the only movie reference knocking about the place – Clark Gable and Jeanette MacDonald beam down from a print that goes back even further. The space as a whole has a very personal atmosphere, as though the owners wanted to entertain their guests in an extension of their living room, complete with their own bits and bobs dotted around. Certainly the dining tables, a mix and match collection, give a more homely feel than the booth seating that is de rigueur these days, but we’d make a beeline for the comfy looking leather sofa in the window for a spot of people watching. Lecture attendance may be taking a nosedive once the word gets out about Soda Pony.