Brunch: City vs. Burbs
Brunch and dessert...the rest of the meal categories can take a hike because these two are all I need. On a trip to Melbourne recently, we were lucky enough to stay two nights...to Luke this was awesome because it meant he could make it to the footy on a Friday night (qualifying final or something important)...but all I was thinking about was the opportunity to fit in two brunches...priorities people.
First up, the CBD and Mister Close. I don't know how long they've been here, but I'm kicking myself for not finding them before this. Literally in the centre of everything but in off the street so you can chill over your brunch without the energy of the city taking over before you're ready to embrace it and start your day (of shopping!). Three words: Chocolate French Toast. Their words: "we know… ridiculously naughty & stupidly good"...yes, yes it was. A combining of my two great loves (brunch & dessert)...a sugary Everest if you will...I made it through.
Love the design...chalkboard/wood panels hanging from the ceiling/world globes/travel quotes/food quotes...and some giant imaginary country map made out of folded maps of world locations all pinned together in such a way that it looks like real coast line & land mass. Even their menu wording (see website above) has character. I can see this becoming a firm favourite...so much so that I will be returning for lunches as well as more brunches, and everything in between. Design your own Bircher Muesli...enough said...love you Mister Close, whoever you are!
She had: Chocolate French Toast...Pan fried brioche, salted chocolate ganache, hazelnut meringue & burnt orange sauce He had: Something that I can't see on the menu but it combined eggs, bacon, maple syrup & think also french toast
There's only so many times you can accidentally keep hearing about a place, from so many different sources, over more than 12 months, before you have to go and see it for yourself. This is Miss Marmalade...my suburbs contender...Brunswick to be precise. You wouldn't know that such a quiet unassuming street would be hiding an amazing brunch spot such as this, we almost drove past it as a result. Exposed brick walls, authentic vintage tram scroll, chalkboard a-plenty...they could pull off a chilled hipster vibe here but they are the opposite of chilled. Friendly staff (our guy looked like Michael Vartan...never hurts!), all smiles...quick but not overly hurried.
I loved the little touches like fresh flowers on the tables...and hanging in jars from the ceiling. There's a dog friendly terrace & super cute character cookies. If you're with the family and you want room to spread out & eat plus keep and eye on the kids whilst they play, there's a whole area for this too. The signature item on the menu is the "Eggs Benny" on potato and rosemary bread with the biggest hash brown I have seen in my life...Luke is a massive fan of eggs benedict at the best of times...this hash brown was a "brunch moment" for him. By the time we were leaving (Brunswick = short easy drive to freeway to Bendigo), the place was getting busy so you would want to be there in good time or investigate whether they allow bookings. I can't blame everyone streaming through the door as we were trying to get out...if I had this place around the corner from my house I'd be visiting every weekend too...on my vintage bike...parked out the front...it's that kind've happy/relaxed vibe.
She had: Eggs Benny He had: Eggs Benny...we're not stupid, this is the kind of meal guaranteed to give everyone else at the table menu-choice-envy...we knew this in advance based on twitter and weren't going to have anything else...although the rest of the menu looks gorgeous...as do their cakes at the counter!
As I write this post, Luke who has no idea what I'm blogging about has called out from the other room about a new brunch place to check out in Brunswick that he's just discovered via someone on Twitter...long live brunches...I don't think we will ever run out of choices to explore!