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Melbourne CBD

Melbourne CBD

Bowery to Williamsburg (Midtown)

June 22, 2015

Hardware Street, and its surroundings have become staple brunch destinations. Very much where you would take your interstate friends in order to make some conceded point of how trendy and cool Melbourne is. Does Bowery to Williamsburg (BW) establish itself as another must-visit culinary hotspot? Yes.

Entering BW you’ll find yourself weaving pass other patrons and staff until you reach your seat. The place is incredibly narrow, but claustrophobics fear not! With it’s relatively high ceilings, BW feels like an open New York-esque delicatessen. The food-prep battle stations and the dinning area share a common space. You only need to peep over your shoulder to see the mesmerizing materialisation of your order. Be prepared to have other patrons to hear your scandalous brunch gossip because there is only one long communal table. Space efficiency is key.

Vincent

Chickpea and Green Pea Falafel Wrap – $14

Let’s not play around, I should have ordered the bagels. I love falafel more than I love meat, so that wasn’t the issue here. That damn Tzatziki however, was so overpowering that it’s sourness just ruined everything. The Tzatziki, like that ingrown hair on your inner thigh, just had to go. Without the sour white evil paste, the wrap was pleasant, but not out of this world amazing. I really wanted to like this place.

Sandy

Lechon Asado – $13

Served on a cafeteria-like tray, Cuban praised pork, pickled zucchini, fennel and celeriac slaw, and garlic aioli on a brioche bun sounded absolute amazing for the whale that was calling from my stomach. And… it sure was! The lechon was moist and every element completed each other well in this burger.

Ratings:

Vincent – 3/5

Sandy – 4.5/5
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Melbourne CBD

Krimper

May 4, 2015

Situated in what appears to be a former warehouse, Krimper offers an industrial interior no different to what you would expect from other alleyway cafes. You might miss this one if you’re not looking properly. This is of course with the exception of the large wooden crate out back, which you may dine in if you are lucky enough to allocated such excusive seats. The big wooden box in the middle of the room and the frantic staff, these are two most memorable elements of Krimper.

Vincent

Chicken – Stuffed with Sage and Chillli, Crushed Carrot Harissa, Peas, Mustard Seed $20

The last time I was at Krimper I ordered the awful Quinoa salad (please avoid this like you would the plague). I wasn’t going to make the same mistake again. I ordered the chicken to be safe this time, because how can you screw up chicken? The dish was strikingly presented on a black plate, effectively highlighting the pool of the sweet potato the chicken breast delicately sat on. It was certainly appealing to the eye. The flavours were subtle yet still aromatic. Middle eastern in inspiration perhaps?

I went with the safe option and that’s, quite frankly, what I got.

Sandy

UPMA – Crispy Polenta, Yoghurt, Eggplant Relish, Manchego Custard and Poached Eggs  $16

I went with the polenta chips as I quite enjoy them. This dish had no surprising element that I really adored, though the eggplant was nice and sweet. The flavour of (not sure what it was, kumquat?) overpowered my taste buds. I felt like the elements in this dish didn’t compliment each other well. The poached eggs and sour cream were a bit too heavy to have on the one plate.

Rating:

Sandy – 2/5

Vincent – 3/5

Krimper on Urbanspoon

Melbourne CBD

Operator 25

March 30, 2015

Goodness. The day that I have feared has finally arrived. I am sad to announce that that I have become a coffee snob. Typical pompous Melbournian behaviour. The exterior of Operator 25 looks like any other brick building you would pass in Melbourne’s CBD. I, being the snob I am, assumed that I was going to be glugging down mediocre and nibbling uninspired dishes.

How I love being wrong in these situations.
The new age, synth-pop and Lorde style beats will seduce you to come inside to have a peak. I knew where this was going. Soon I was seated and gently fingering my way through the menu. I knew what I wanted.

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Vincent
Braised Eggs in Spiced Tomato Sauce, Grilled Morcilla, Sweet Potatoes, Chickpeas and Labna served with House Corn Bread $18

Hello Braised Eggs! I’ve been waiting. I absolutely love corn bread, but it’s always a hit or a miss whenever I order it. In this case, it proved to be amazing. It was sweet, moist on the inside and yet crunchy on the outside. Much like how you would want your French toast. The eggs were braised in a sea of beans, tomato sauce, chickpeas and sweet potatoes. In the centre of storm was a dollop of Labna (a yoghurt product similar to cream cheese) combing all these elements onto my fork, I nervously took the first mouthful. I was expecting warmed up death, but instead I got a hearty mix of flavours. I was quite pleased (who am I kidding it was bloody divine!). At this point I was too exited to take down any more notes. This rustic broth of flavourful elements was hot, but I didn’t care. I probably burnt the roof my mouth, but it didn’t matter. I was finally satisfied.

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Sandy

Sweet Corn Fritters with Fried Duck Egg, Heirloom Tomato Salad, Goats Curd and Basil and Dill Herb Oil $18

Having been here before, I knew what I was expecting from previous dining experience. I love this place.
Corn fritters are my absolute favourite brunch food therefore; I had to order this dish. You would expect a corn fritter dish to come out as one or two little patty-sized fritters as the bed of the dish, but Operator 25 has uniquely presented this dish as a decomposed-like dish with dollops of goats curd, basil and dill herb oil in between each fritter. These fritters melted in my mouth!

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Can I just mention how perfect this duck egg looks? Almost wax like!

Rating:

Vincent – 4/5
Sandy – 5/5

Operator25 on Urbanspoon

Melbourne CBD

The Mule Café

March 17, 2015

A stone’s throw away from Little Mule Café is Captains of Industry and just down the other alley way is Manchester Press. Fair to say, that this little alleyway eatery has some stiff competition.

So how do they try and stand out? Well…by not doing much at all, literally. Bare essentials – perfectly describe the interior of the Little Mule Café.

Like many other before it, the Little Mule Café décor is very industrial. It feels familiar. You’ve seen this before. It has been replicated over and over again. I can’t help but feel that this is the mood the Little Mule Café wants to exude. You’ve tried all the crazy, now come back to what you know.

Vincent

Tuna & Wild Rice Salad: Tuna & Cherry Tomatoes, Roasted Peppers, Rocket & lemons $12

“Tuna and Wild Rice Salad please blow me away” – I quietly thought to myself. It arrived in front of me and I instantly dismissed it as something I could have made at home. I took my first bite and my dismissive judgements were confirmed. I wasn’t upset but damn this was a let down.

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Sandy

Chicken Sandwich with Chipotle Mayo Beetroot Relish, Avocado & Rocket $10

Though I am not quite the fan of sourdough when it is toasted, this sandwich was quite delightful. As a chicken sandwich is usually quite dry, the textures from the chipotle mayo, beetroot relish and avocado made every mouthful ever so delicious.

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Rating:

Vincent – 3/5

Sandy – 4/5

Little Mule Cafe on Urbanspoon

Melbourne CBD

The Grain Store

December 17, 2014

 Ever wondered what it would be like to step through the looking glass into Wonderland?

Depressingly for those of us that don’t use acid (party safely kids), however, walking into the Grain Store for the first time will be the closest you will ever get to such an experience.

The Grain Store is located on the dull end of Flinders Lane. Think car park lots and dark-outdated office
buildings filled with tradies out front. It’s a shock to the system when you transition from such drab surroundings, into a joint that looks like it’s been directly lifted out of an ikea catalog. The place is buzzing with life. It’s vibrant, energetic and joyous. You turn your head to one side and salivate over the baked goods on display, then turn your head another 90 degrees and gaze into the open kitchen. Our hard-ons for the harmonious ecosystem of the Grain Store could barely be contained.

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Between the both us, we had settled on devouring the Cider Poached Milawa Free Range
Chicken & Almonds (Sandy) and the Vegan Carrot Sumac Falafel & White Bean Hummus (Vincent) with a side of asparagus. G-L-O-R-I-O-U-S is the only word that comes to mind when trying to describe our dishes.

The Poached Cider Chicken would fizzle as a solo artist. However, once joined by it’s supporting acts such as the Ajo Blanco dressing, almond flakes and butternut pumpkin chips, the dish put on quite the performance.

Textures. Textures. Textures.

The moist poached chicken, fresh red lettuce and crisp butternut pumpkin strips would all be worthy of a standing ovation.

On the other end of the table, the Vegan Falafel Sumac was waiting to make its debut. This dish was full of life. Stunning on the plate and orgasmic on the tongue. Simply put, WOW. The subtly bitter salad, sweet morsels of pumpkin pieces, exotic falafel and soothing hummus made every mouthful so damn exciting.

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These dishes had us induced into a trance like state.

If you’re looking for a temporary escape from a colourless-boring arse day at the office, then
The Grain Store is where you want to be.

*Weekday Lunch menu*

Rating: 

Sandy – 4.5/5

Vincent – 4/5

The Grain Store on Urbanspoon