Bridesmaid brunch at Gardiner & Field

It was probably a mistake to try the new Armadale venue, Gardiner & Field, on it’s first open weekend… especially after a good write-up in Broadsheet earlier this week…

I kinda thought that the old milk bar was going to transform into a cool cafe to give the girls at the Cubby House Canteen some healthy competition… but really, it’s not actually targeting the same crowd… or at least it shouldn’t be but obviously some of the Malvern Mums forgot that the little ones like a babycino and a swing-set as there were certainly a few kiddies filling the valuable real estate in the small cafe…

We knew we would have to wait and we were told 20 minutes… No problem. Five great friends and only one hangover (oh no… not the bride)… Half an hour later a very apologetic waitress explained that a group had finished but they just wouldn’t leave… Understandable. I hate being rushed out of places so we waited patiently for another 15 minutes and eventually sat down and ordered asap…

Spiced quinoa, pumpkin and chickpea fritters with flatbread, spiced yoghurt, coriander and poached eggs

Poached egg with prosciutto and a broad bean, peas, avo & fetta mash

I ordered the quinoa fritters on flatbread. Pretty much clean and lean too, except the flatbread… which was EXCELLENT!!! The whole dish was delish, except the eggs just felt a little out-of-place among all the other ingredients… and I am the one who loves weird stuff… The ladies told me the that broad bean eggs needed more fetta in the mash. Don’t hold back boys! Whack in some flavour or otherwise it’s just too healthy…. The coffee was great, served in really cute aqua cups.

For me this is a place I would return on a weekday… then again, these days I feel like I am writing that at the end of every breakfast story… Basically I just need to stop having hangovers and get up earlier! Dammit!

Gardiner and Field on Urbanspoon

A sisterly coffee in Hawthorn…

A catch up to discuss living arrangements now we are both back in the one city… and we own the one house together… in that one city… inneresting…

Sis is currently renting in Hawthorn, around the corner from Porgie and Mr Jones, a place I have heard a lot about, a place where a queue is standard. Today it was a case of good timing as we rocked up at noon and there were a few tables available… Not for long though, the lunch rush started about 20 mins later…

This was a coffee date but I was super hungry and couldn’t resist an order of folded “scrambles” with fresh herbs and chunks of goats cheese…

Scrambles with fresh herbs & goats cheese

It was really delicious (a nice ordering change for me) and seemed good value for around twelve bucks but I found the menu pricing super confusing with my old favourite eggs and avo on toast at approx $17 yet most of the dishes were around $12 or $13 dollar mark… The avo was costed with a few other things, as an extra at $5 which seems a little extreme for extras too… maybe I have just lost track of how much avos cost these days… It’s just I am not normally a price driven consumer and on this occasion it seemed to stand out. Overall I would definitely re-visit… at noon of course.
Porgie and Mr Jones on Urbanspoon

Brekkie in North Melbourne or was it Carlton…

… It’s tough to get brekkie in North Melbourne… without waiting in a queue… as we learnt on a recent Sunday brekkie.

Mum had requested we go to Duchess of Spotswood after reading my food story from our visit west, but I convinced her that North Melbourne was better brekkie territory so I could knock off another venue on my Northside Brunch Pledge. My intention was to visit the much-lauded Auction Rooms and that was the first address I gave to mum… The parentals were waiting out the front when we arrived… along with about 30 other people… The wait was about 30 mins according to the “brekkie door bitch”… I’m not really keen on queuing for brekkie and I would think that peeps over 50 are generally less inclined so quick-thinking Ben suggested Di Bella around the corner where he’d had a great coffee the week before (little did he know that was also on my list so there were no arguments from me). We jumped into one car and drove around the corner… We didn’t even need to slow down to see the situation was the same if not worse out the front of Di Bella… I clicked onto my Urbanspoon app to suss out the next closest venue (on my list) and we found Seven Seeds around the corner and, by now in the next suburb of Carlton. There was no obvious queue thank god, as Dad’s patience was well and truly waning… Unfortunately, once we got inside, we saw the little group of people milling at the front and were told 20 minutes… This time we did wait and were finally seated out the back on a table under a heater. I quite liked the little outside bit until a bunch of smokers also joined us dammit…

Brekkie was okay. The pics make it look fantastic (I think my best brekkie photos so far). The bacon and egg bagel was definitely the winner but mum’s rosti was a little disappointing with an overpowering oily taste. I choose my standard eggs and avo which was good (I think I am getting bored with my standard…. it might be time to mix it up a bit)

egg & bacon bagel with roasted cherry tomatoes & tomato relish

Heirloom tomatoes w yarra valley feta, avocado & sauce vierge on toasted seeded sourdough

Carrot & Potato Rosti with avo & tomato

I think Seven Seeds deserves another visit when it is our intended destination… and when I can get a little more exciting with my order!

 Seven Seeds on Urbanspoon

Girl talk at Chez Dre…

Lunch at Chez Dre was a gossipy affair over some delicious light meals. I was feeling really bad about the last time my friend and I hung out because as usual, my wedding talk took over, and I didn’t manage to ask enough questions about my friend to find out she had a new boyfriend… self-centred bitch that I am! Wedding talk is super boring compared to new boyfriend talk… as we both found out!

Tomato, Basil, Mozzarella & Pancetta Bruschetta

Moroccan Baked Eggs with Sourdough

I ordered the bruschetta which comes with an egg. The combination sounded little strange but totally worked for me. The pancetta was fab. The Moroccan baked eggs looked amazing and were ordered with sourdough instead of ciabatta to avoid too much crunch. We basically both ate brekkie at lunch but nothing wrong with that and to top it all off… they had one of their incredible cakes on tasting as we paid the bill… Yyyyeeeeesssssssss!!

Chez Dré on Urbanspoon

South Melbourne lunch special…

So we have a new South Melbourne local but there is a problem… It’s so bloody good that it’s getting super busy. The place is run by a team of two behind the bar and stove…. oohh… I get it now… Stove Monkey… Suddenly the name makes sense but I think they may need to be hiring another Stove Monkey soon to keep up with demand… There aren’t that many lunch spots in South Melbourne where you have to queue: the market dim sims…. and Origami Japanese but this is going to be the latest methinks…

They do a few sandwiches and a couple of soups that you can have eat-in or take-away. They are brilliant sandwiches and soups too… peeps in the office start calling from 11am to find out what’s on for the day but in my opinion the two absolute winning dishes that you must have if you have time to eat-in are the cuttlefish & calamari spicy tabbouleh salad and/or the fried chicken on coleslaw with a crispy fried egg… What does a crispy fried egg taste like? Try it… It’s definitely worth it!

calamari & cuttlefish on spicy tabbouleh

Pork Belly Ciabatta

chicken with coleslaw and crispy fried egg

Stove Monkey on Urbanspoon